Both of Georgia’s U.S. senators say they are ready to get to work on policy and governance issues now that the impeachment of President Donald Trump is behind them.
But it’s an election year for both David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler, and their political opponents have indicated that impeachment will follow them on the campaign trail.
Perdue and Loeffler were critical all along of Democrats’ decision to bring impeachment charges against Trump, and their votes to acquit him were not a surprise. Shortly after the mostly party-line votes to clear the president on Wednesday evening, Perdue said he hopes members of both parties can now focus on issues such as immigration, health care costs and federal spending.
“Now that it’s over and we voted it down, I hope the House and the Senate both can get past this partisanship and start moving on to the things that are important,” he said.
Loeffler, via a statement Wednesday evening, struck a similar tone.
“The impeachment trial is over, and we are moving on,” she said. “The American people will make a judgment for themselves in nine months. Now let’s get back to work.”
Nine months will be November’s general election, where Trump will face a yet-to-be-determined Democrat. Both Loeffler and Perdue are also on the ballot this year.
The Democratic Party of Georgia, which has candidates lined up to challenge both Republicans, criticized their decision to defend Trump.
“Rather than upholding their oath to do ‘impartial justice,’ Perdue and Loeffler spent the entire trial doing Mitch McConnell’s bidding instead of allowing for a fair hearing of evidence and firsthand witness testimony,” party spokesman Alex Floyd said.
Loeffler also caught heat from her Republican opponent, U.S. Rep. Doug Collins, because of her ties to Utah U.S. Sen. Mitt Romney, who was the only Republican in either chamber of Congress to vote with Democrats during this impeachment.
Although Loeffler has distanced herself from Romney since taking office, the two were once friends and she donated large sums to his presidential run.
After Romney announced he would vote “guilty” on one of the charges against the president, Collins wrote on Twitter that he wanted voters to remember that Loeffler donated more than $750,000 to Romney’s campaign in 2012 but nothing to Trump in 2016.
The president said he would address the American public on Thursday about his acquittal. White House press secretary Stephanie Gresham released a statement Wednesday that accused Democratic leaders in the House of waging a partisan attempt to overturn the 2016 election.
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