It would be hard to describe Friday as anything but a HUGE win for Republicans.
With fears running rampant that Dems had the numbers to get more witnesses called, enough Republicans held the line to defeat the measure.
Winning the Battle
This impeachment has been a coup from the outset, but it finally appears as though Republicans have been able to put it down.
Republicans were concerned that Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) had been working as a whip for Democrats behind the scenes to get support for calling fresh witnesses.
When the votes were cast, only Romney and Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) sided with Dems, defeating the measure with a vote of 51-49.
After the vote, McConnell stated, “A majority of the U.S. Senate has determined that the numerous witnesses and 28,000-plus pages of documents already in evidence are sufficient to judge the House Managers’ accusations and end this impeachment trial.”
Now, there are some formalities to go through before the final vote will be cast.
Senators were given the weekend off, and the trial will resume on Monday.
The next step is for closing arguments, which will be followed by a period to allow every Senator to address the country for 10 minutes to explain his or her vote.
Once that is over, the Senate will vote to acquit President Donald J. Trump.
For Romney, this vote was far more costly than simply losing this one battle.
He has found himself on an island with virtually no party support.
CPAC, arguably the largest conservative event of the year, formally disinvited Romney after his vote was cast.
This event has always given Republicans considerable exposure and a chance to boost fundraising efforts, but Romney will not be there.
His vote also probably assured him of being a one-term Senator for Utah, as it is highly likely that if he does decide to run again, a pro-Trump candidate will look to unseat him.
As far as pro-Trump conservatives are concerned, that day cannot come soon enough.