GOP Senators Who Voted to Convict Donald Trump Face Local Censures

Republican senators who voted to convict former President Donald Trump were rebuked by GOP chapters in their states, with many local groups either censuring them or considering doing so.

During the week-long unprecedented second impeachment trial, Sens. Richard Burr (R-NC), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Susan Collins (R-ME), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Mitt Romney (R-UT), Ben Sasse (R-NE) and Pat Toomey (R-PA) stood at odds with their party and joined 50 Democrats in finding Trump guilty of inciting the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.

Trump was acquitted on Saturday, as the guilty votes did not meet the required Senate supermajority of 67 to convict the ex-commander-in-chief.

Second https://t.co/8nVKeljwLe

— Congressman Dan Bishop (@jdanbishop) February 13, 2021

The dissenting Republicans faced a backlash from GOP groups local to the states they represent, some of which moved to disavow their senators.

Louisiana's Republican Party said it had voted unanimously to censure Cassidy in a brief statement released on the day of Trump's acquittal.

"We condemn, in the strongest possible terms, the vote today by Sen. Cassidy to convict former President Trump," the party said prior to announcing the censure. "Fortunately, clearer heads prevailed and President Trump has been acquitted of the impeachment charge filed against him."

Toomey was censured by several Pennsylvania GOP chapters, including Centre County, Clarion County, Washington and York.

In a statement, Washington GOP Chairman Dave Ball alleged Pennsylvania's Republican Party almost produced a resolution to censure Toomey prior to the impeachment trial, until the senator assured he would "neither vote to continue the trial nor vote for impeachment."

"We have acted decisively to send a very strong message to Senator Toomey that he works for us and what he is doing is not in the interest of his constituents or our Party," Ball wrote, announcing the censure a day before Toomey cast his vote to convict Trump.

York County Republican committee chairman Jeff Piccola said on Saturday his group "no longer recognizes" Toomey as a "creditable representative of our party."

"[Toomey's] participation in and support of a kangaroo court trial created by crazed, partisan Democrats [...] is insulting to all Pennsylvanians," said Piccola.

The Carolina Journal reported Sunday that the North Carolina Republican Party's central committee will hold an emergency session Monday evening to pass a resolution censuring Burr.

The Johnston County Republican Party said it has "encouraged" the state's GOP group to censure Burr, while Republican North Carolina congressman Dan Bishop seconded a Twitter user's call for the senator's censure.

North Carolina Republican National committeewoman Kyshia Lineberger expressed support for Burr's censure over his vote in the impeachment trial.

"His job is to do the will of the people and to support his constituents," Lineberger wrote in a Faceboook post. "Senator Burr did NOT vote the will of the people and should be held accountable."

The Nebraska GOP moved to censure Sasse earlier this month over his refusal to support Trump's election fraud claims. Romney dodged a censure resolution by Utah Republicans last year over his vote to convict Trump during the first impeachment trial.

While there were no apparent plans by the Alaska GOP to censure Murkowski, her vote in this month's proceedings risks costing the senator reelection in 2022. Murkowski could lose her seat to Sarah Palin, who has threatened to challenge the incumbent senator.

Pat Toomey walks through Senate subway
Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA) walks through the Senate subway at the conclusion of former President Donald Trump's second impeachment trial February 13, 2021 in Washington, DC. Toomey was censured by several Pennsylvania GOP chapters over his vote to convict Trump. Samuel Corum/Getty Images