Pelosi Objects to CNN Anchor’s Claim That Trump Was Acquitted in Impeachment Trial

Tobias Hoonhout

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) interjected during an interview Saturday to make the case that President Trump was not acquitted from impeachment because his Senate trial lacked additional witnesses and documents demanded by Senate Democrats.

“You can’t have an acquittal unless you have a trial, and you can’t have a trial unless you have witnesses and documents — so he can say he’s acquitted, and the headlines can say ‘acquitted,’ but he’s impeached forever: branded with that, and not vindicated,” Pelosi argued.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) used the 53-47 Republican majority in the Senate to push for a trial that mirrored that of former president Bill Clinton with a vote to call witnesses after opening arguments from both sides. After days of back and forth, and a push to include testimony from former NSA adviser John Bolton, the Senate ultimately voted 51-49 to reject additional witnesses, as Senators Mitt Romney of Utah and Susan Collins of Maine joined Democrats to call for more evidence.

Speaking to CNN Saturday, the House Speaker went on to praise Romney for  voting with Democrats to impeach Trump. Romney explained his decision at the time as one made with “thorough analysis and searching,” including prayer. “I don’t pretend that God told me what to do . . . I’m subject to my own conscience,” he told The Atlantic.

Trump singled out both Romney and Pelosi the day after his impeachment acquittal for using “their faith as justification for doing what they know is wrong” while speaking at the National Prayer Breakfast. He also publicized the conclusion of impeachment by holding up copies of USA Today and The Washington Post with headlines reading “ACQUITTED” and “Trump Acquitted,” respectively.

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