Republican Sen. Patrick Toomey (Pa.) on Saturday evening released a statement explaining his reason for voting to convict former President Trump during the Senate impeachment trial, saying that Trump’s actions betrayed the Constitution.
The Senate earlier in the day voted 57-43 on a single charge of incitement of insurrection, falling short of the two-thirds majority needed to convict the former president.
The statement, released after the trial concluded, explained Toomey’s decision to break from his party.
“His betrayal of the Constitution and his oath of office required conviction,” he wrote.
The Pennsylvania senator claimed that Trump’s defense team was accurate in their observations that Democrats were doing everything in their power to get Trump impeached.
“Many elected Democrats did want to impeach President Trump from the moment he won the 2016 election.”
Toomey added, “The mainstream media was unrelentingly biased and hostile to the president. Both often overlooked violent riots when perpetrated in favor of causes they found sympathetic last summer.”
Despite this, Toomey stated he believes Trump’s conduct following his loss in the 2020 election was not acceptable.
“He began with dishonest, systematic attempts to convince supporters that he had won. His lawful, but unsuccessful, legal challenges failed due to lack of evidence.”
Toomey said he was one of the 74 million Americans who voted for Trump, but that the former president’s behavior in the final months of his presidency “betrayed the confidence millions of us placed in him.”
Toomey added that Trump put pressure on state and local officials to reverse the election outcomes in their states. When he exhausted all other options, Toomey continued, Trump invited his supporters to Washington, D.C.
“He urged the mob to march on the Capitol for the explicit purpose of preventing Congress and the Vice President from formally certifying the results of the presidential election.”
Trump acted only to “hold on to power despite having legitimately lost,” Toomey alleged, adding that because of Trump’s actions, the transfer of power from one president to another was not peaceful for the first time in history.
“A lawless attempt to retain power by a president was one of the founders’ greatest fears motivating the inclusion of the impeachment authorities in the U.S. Constitution.”
Toomey was one of five GOP lawmakers who voted that Trump’s impeachment trial was constitutional in January.
On Saturday, Toomey was joined by six other GOP senators in his vote to convict including Sens. Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), Susan Collins (Maine), Ben Sasse (Neb.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Richard Burr (N.C.) and Mitt Romney (Utah).