Political Science Expert Breaks Down Former President Trump’s Acquittal

Trump stands as the only president in U.S. history to be impeached twice in the House and acquitted by the Senate.

FARGO, N.D. (KVRR) — As former president Trump is acquitted of charges in causing insurrection at the U.S. capitol.

A Political science expert breaks down what’s next for the country.

“You had a president that two times activated the party in the majority of the house, the Democratic party that they felt compelled by his actions to go through impeachment even though they knew the likelihood of conviction was very low in the senate,” MSUM Political Science Professor, Dr. Barbara Headrick said.

Dr. Barbara Headrick of MSUM says even after leaving office, the vote to convict Trump on charges of insurrection was to serve as a message.

“The Democrats felt that you could not let future presidents know just because it’s late in your term, you’re about to go out the door you shouldn’t be able to do whatever you want and think nobody is going to do anything about it just because you’re about to leave, they thought that was a bad precedent to set,” said Headrick.

Seven Republicans joined Democrats in voting to convict Trump on charges of insurrection.

Headrick says a widening divide is coming for the Republican party.

“I think there’s going to be a fight within the Republican party about what the future of the party should be. Some of the things Trump pushed for will continue to be a part of the Republican party, but the question is what is the role of Donald Trump himself.” Headrick said.

One of those roles is whether Trump will continue to hold power over the party.

“He holds power over the Republican party as long as he holds influence with enough Republican voters. As long as there is a view that Donald Trump has influence over a significant part of the Republican voters he will continue to have influence over the Republican party,” Headrick said.

She says with the divide in one party it could mean the possibility of some cooperation amongst opposing political candidates.

“You hope they find some common ground on some things. The fact that they were able to get seven republican votes will encourage President Biden to look for not a lot of Republicans to join Democrats at times, but perhaps a few on some issues that they will be able to find some common ground on,” said Headrick.

Former President Trump stands as the only president in U.S. history to be impeached twice in the House and acquitted by the Senate.

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