Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) according to a new book which will be released next month came really close to voting to impeach President Trump during the impeachment trial following the Capitol Riot on January 6, 2021.
According to an excerpt from “UNCHECKED: The Untold Story Behind Congress’s Botched Impeachments of Donald Trump,” published in the Washington Post, which is written by the Post’s Karoun Demirjian and Politico’s Rachel Bade, McConnel had been conflicted in what to vote and whether to convict Trump for inciting the mob to enter the Capitol on Jan. 6.
McConnell also saw that many Republicans turned against Trump following the riot and even asked that he resign. However, despite the original outrage, McConnel was “stunned” by how quickly many GOP members started supporting Trump again and only 10 House Republicans ended up voting in favor of impeachment.
McConnell also knew at the time that Senate Republicans would turn to him for guidance, especially in regards to Sen. Rand Paul’s (R-Ky.) motion which was looking into whether convictions for a president no longer in the office are constitutionally allowed.
The House voted to impeach Trump during his term, but the Senate trial began only after Trump had left office.
At the time of the insurrection, McConnel was reportedly telling his aides that Trump was crazy and he was done with him. He also considered that if they voted to convict Trump then he would not be able to run for office again.
According to some of his legal advisors, McConnell was also informed that it might not be possible to stop Trump from running again and that Trump could have grounds to sue any state that refused to put him on the ballot.
Ultimately, McConnell did not vote in favor of impeachment during the trial.