Republican Senator Susan collinsSusan Margaret Collins North Carolina Republican Party condemns Burr for impeachment vote against Trump Toomey for Trump vote: ‘His betrayal of the Constitution’ required conviction Collins: Trump ‘incited an insurrection’ to prevent transfer of power MORE (Maine) said Saturday that the former President TrumpDonald TrumpBiden on Trump’s acquittal: ‘Substance of charge is not in dispute’ North Carolina Republican Party Condemns Burr for Impeachment Vote Against Trump Toomey for Trump’s Vote: ‘His Betrayal of the Constitution’ required conviction MORE He “incited an insurrection” against the Capitol on January 6 and laid the groundwork for months by claiming his elections had been stolen.
“That attack was not a spontaneous outbreak of violence. Rather, it was the culmination of a constant stream of provocations from President Trump that aimed to overturn the results of the presidential election,” Collins said from the Senate.
Collins was one of seven Republican senators who voted Saturday to condemn Trump for inciting an insurrection. Although senators fell short of the two-thirds majority needed to convict the former president, it marked a major bipartisan reprimand for his actions.
Collins, during his speech in the room, laid out a timeline of how he believed Trump had been setting the political atmosphere for the eventual violent mob by repeating false claims of widespread voter fraud.
The president’s unprecedented efforts to discredit the election results did not begin on January 6. Rather, it planted the seeds of doubt many weeks before the votes were cast on November 3. He repeatedly told his supporters that only a ‘rigged election’ could cause him to lose, “Collins said.
Collins also pointed to Trump’s actions immediately after the election, where he tweeted that he was “stolen” and said it showed that his “post-election campaign to change the outcome began.”
Collins also pointed to a surprising call Trump had with Georgia officials, urging them to “find” nearly 12,000 votes, as well as efforts to get the then vice president. Mike penceMichael (Mike) Richard PenceCollins: Trump ‘incited an insurrection’ to prevent transfer of power McConnell unloads on Trump: ‘Morally responsible’ for provoking the mob Seven Republican senators vote to condemn Trump MORE to discard the results of the Electoral College on January 6.
“In this situation, context was everything. Throwing a lit match in a pile of dry leaves is very different from throwing it in a pool of water. And on January 6, the atmosphere in the crowd outside the White House was highly flammable, largely as a result of a bad wind blowing from Washington for the past two months, “he added.
“That set the stage for the assault on the Capitol for the first time in more than 200 years,” he added.
Collins, who won reelection last year, is part of a dwindling group of moderates in the Senate and was seen as a swing vote in the impeachment process.
As part of an hour-long question and answer session on Friday, she, Sen. Lisa Murkowksi (R-Alaska), the senator. Mitt romneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt Romney North Carolina Republican Party Condemns Burr for Impeachment Vote Against Trump Toomey for Trump’s Vote: ‘His Betrayal of the Constitution’ Required Conviction Collins: Trump ‘Incited an Insurrection’ to avoid power transfer MORE (R-Utah) and Sen. Bill cassidyBill Cassidy North Carolina Republican Party Condemns Burr for Impeachment Vote Against Trump Toomey for Trump’s Vote: ‘His Betrayal of the Constitution’ Required Conviction Collins: Trump ‘Incited an Insurrection’ to Prevent Transfer of power MORE (R-La.) He asked questions about when Trump realized that the Capitol had been violated and what steps he took next.
Instead of preventing a dangerous situation, President Trump created one. And instead of defending the constitutional transfer of power, it incited an insurrection in order to prevent that transfer of power from occurring, “Collins said.
He added that Trump, by “subordinating the interests of the country to his own selfish interests, bears a significant responsibility for the invasion of the Capitol.”