U.S. Senate Votes to Acquit President Trump of Abuse of Power, Obstruction of Congress

Impeachment trial of Trump ends with acquittal and rancor.
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The U.S. Senate on Wednesday voted 52-48 to acquit President Donald Trump of abuse of power, and 53-47 of obstruction of Congress, ending his impeachment trial and leaving bitter divisions on Capitol Hill.

The vote was widely expected after enough Republican senators indicated last week they would vote to acquit, even though many said House managers had proved their case against the president.

Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, broke with other Republicans to vote to convict the president on abuse of power charges, saying he had committed an act that rose to the level of a high crime and misdemeanor. Romney became the first senator ever to vote against a member of his or her own party in any of the three impeachment trials in U.S. history.

The second vote on obstruction of Congress followed party lines, with all Republicans backing Trump, and all Democrats voting to convict him. 

The vote came a day after Trump used his State of the Union address to Congress to effectively launch his re-election campaign.

In a measure of the partisan atmosphere at play, Trump refused to shake House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's hand before the speech. Immediately after it was concluded, Pelosi, D-Calif., tore her copy of the address in half and tossed it aside.

Trump used the speech to boast about the stock market's performance during his administration and to claim that the U.S. economy had never been in better shape. 

U.S. stocks closed sharply higher Wednesday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average up nearly 500 points and both the S&P 500 and Nasdaq ending at record highs.