WASHINGTON, D.C., USA — President Donald Trump was acquitted by the Senate Wednesday on both the abuse of power charge and the obstruction of congress charge he faced in his impeachment trial. Among the Senators who voted in favor of the acquittal is Maine Sen. Susan Collins.
While the Republican Senator has received some praise for her decision, she has also received an ample amount of backlash for her vote.
Collins sat down with NEWS CENTER Maine just moments before casting her official vote and opened up more about her final decision.
“I would hope that anyone who looks at how I reached my decision, whether or not they agree with it, would conclude that it was a careful decision,” Sen. Collins said in her D.C. office.
Collins has said repeatedly that she intended to follow the same guidelines that were used in the impeachment trial of President Clinton back in 1999. She was one of only a handful of Senators who voted in favor of hearing from witnesses after hearing opening arguments. That motion ultimately failed.
Some have questioned whether the Senator had faced pressure from the Trump administration or her Republican colleagues, but she has denied those claims. She also said those who think her vote to acquit the President means she is setting a dangerous precedent for future administrations, ‘are wrong’.
Instead, she said there are a number of issues in which her vote has been in favor of limiting the amount of power given to the President. One example she gave was voting against the President’s ability to transfer money from military construction projects to build his border wall, though she said she does believe we need stronger protection at our borders.
“I have co-sponsored a resolution that I expect to come up very soon that will reassert the congressional role under the constitution to say that the President cannot commit our troops to assist in military action unless Congress specifically authorizes that action,” Collins added.
When asked if she believed the President had learned his lesson?
“I hope the President has learned his lesson but we will have to see,” Collins said. “It’s important that Congressional oversight will still be there and the President has said he does not like having the fact that he was impeached on his resume.”
As far as the call being ‘perfect,’ as the President has claimed repeatedly, Collins said the President’s phone call was ‘not even close to perfect’.
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