Donald Trump acquitted of all impeachment charges

WASHINGTON (AFP) – US President Donald Trump drew on staunch Republican support to defeat the gravest threat yet to his three-year-old presidency on Wednesday, winning acquittal in the Senate on impeachment charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

Only the third US leader ever placed on trial, Trump readily defeated the Democratic-led effort to expel him from office for having illicitly sought help from Ukraine to bolster his 2020 re-election effort.

Trump immediately claimed “victory” while the White House declared it a full “exoneration” for the president — even as Democrats rejected the acquittal as the “valueless” outcome of an unfair trial.

Despite being confronted with strong evidence, Republicans stayed loyal and mustered a majority of votes to clear the president of both charges — by 52 to 48 on abuse of power and 53 to 47 on obstruction of Congress — falling far short of the two-thirds supermajority required for conviction.

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