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Democrats force polarizing Senate impeachment trial of Trump

US House Clerk Cheryl Johnson, Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) and Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) walk through the Capitol’s Statuary Hall to deliver the article of impeachment against former President Donald Trump to the Senate floor, in Washington, DC, on January 25, 2021. (Photo by AFP)

Ramin Mazaheri 
Press TV, Chicago

The Democrat-led lower house of Congress has forced a second impeachment trial in the Senate for ex-president Donald Trump on charges of “incitement of insurrection”, following the deadly protests inside Capitol Hill on January 6th.

There is seemingly no chance that a super-majority two-thirds of the Senate - which is evenly spit between both parties - will vote to convict Trump this time, either. Recent polls show America is almost evenly split on if Trump deserves a conviction, meaning the trial will be yet another highly-divisive political event. 

Analysts suggest that Democrats may be pushing the trial as a way to weaken the Republican Party: by forcing Republicans to openly choose between pro-Trump and anti-Trump factions, conservatives could be weakened by infighting for years. 

Trump remains incredibly popular among Republicans, but a conviction would forbid him from holding office and running for president in 2024. Given the record anger, disunity and polarization, many wonder if a successful conviction could backfire and provoke even greater problems. 

New president Joe Biden is being criticized for allowing Congress to focus on a trial instead of creating legislation to cope with a raging pandemic and a once-in-a-century economic disaster. Many fear the controversial trial will eliminate willingness for bipartisanship in a Congress in which Democrats have only a very slim margin of control.

Biden’s primary aim of his first 100 days is to attempt to undo four years of Donald Trump’s policies. That’s a different agenda than Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s first 100 days in 1933, when amid similar economic catastrophe he rolled out 15 pieces of major legislation to begin the so-called “New Deal” and economic recovery. 

The trial will begin on February 8th, and must dominate the proceedings of Congress until its conclusion weeks later. 

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