Trump hammers Manchin over impeachment vote

Trump hammers Manchin over impeachment vote
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President TrumpDonald John TrumpHouse panel approves 0.5B defense policy bill House panel votes against curtailing Insurrection Act powers after heated debate House panel votes to constrain Afghan drawdown, ask for assessment on 'incentives' to attack US troops MORE slammed Sen. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinManchin draws line against repealing legislative filibuster Steyer endorses Markey in Massachusetts Senate primary The Hill's Morning Report - COVID-19 alarms escalate; Trump under fire over Russia MORE Friday over his vote to convict in the Senate’s impeachment trial, saying the West Virginia Democrat was a “puppet” for the Democratic Party.

“I was very surprised & disappointed that Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia voted against me on the Democrat’s totally partisan Impeachment Hoax. No President has done more for the great people of West Virginia than me (Pensions), and that will always continue,” Trump tweeted.

“[Sen. Capito] was all in (a great person),” he added, referring to Republican Sen. Shelley Moore CapitoShelley Wellons Moore CapitoMcConnell makes strong call for masks, saying there should be no stigma Ernst sinks vote on Trump EPA nominee GOP: Trump needs a new plan MORE (W.Va.). “I was told by many that Manchin was just a puppet for Schumer & Pelosi. That’s all he is!” 

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Manchin, a red-state Democrat who narrowly won reelection in 2018, was widely considered a swing vote on impeachment heading into Wednesday’s vote. He announced just before the vote began that he would back convicting Trump on articles of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress regarding the president's dealings with Ukraine. 

“The charges brought against President Trump are serious and carry grave consequences for our nation,” Manchin said in a statement explaining his vote. “The evidence presented by the House Managers, including video testimony of witnesses under oath in the House of Representatives, clearly supports the charges brought against the President in the articles of impeachment."

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“I take no pleasure in these votes, and am saddened this is the legacy we leave our children and grandchildren,” he added. “I have always wanted this President, and every President to succeed, but I deeply love our country and must do what I think is best for the nation.”

Manchin was a top target for Trump in the 2018 midterm cycle, with the president campaigning heavily against the West Virginia Democrat in a state Trump won more than 40 points in 2016.

In his tweet, Trump also went after Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyOvernight Defense: Lawmakers demand answers on reported Russian bounties for US troops deaths in Afghanistan | Defense bill amendments target Germany withdrawal, Pentagon program giving weapons to police Senators aim to limit Trump's ability to remove troops from Germany Voters must strongly reject the president's abuses by voting him out this November MORE (Utah), who was the only Republican to break party lines by voting to convict on the abuse of power charge.

“Every Republican Senator except Romney, many highly religious people, all very smart, voted against the Impeachment Hoax,” Trump tweeted.

Trump has repeatedly hammered Romney, with whom he’s had a rocky relationship, over the vote in recent days. However, the president has also touted Wednesday’s votes to acquit him on both articles.

Brett Samuels contributed.