Speaking shortly after House impeachment prosecutors and President Donald Trump’s defense team wrapped up their closing arguments Monday, Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska called the president’s actions “shameful and wrong.”
But Murkowski also lambasted Congress and the highly partisan impeachment process and said on the Senate floor, she “cannot vote to convict.”
“Removal from office and being barred from ever holding another office of honor, trust or profit under the United States is the political death penalty,” she said.
Most senators acknowledge the House Democratic managers have essentially proven their case.
Trump was impeached in December on two charges: that he abused his power like no other president in history when he pushed Ukraine to investigate rival Democrats, and he then obstructed Congress by instructing aides to defy House subpoenas.
But key Republicans have decided the president’s actions toward Ukraine do not rise to the level of impeachable offense that warrants the dramatic political upheaval of conviction and removal from office. His acquittal in Wednesday’s vote is all but assured.