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28 senators who were in Congress for Clinton’s impeachment, and how they voted then

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  • A little more than 20 years separates the impeachment trials of former President Bill Clinton and President Donald Trump.
  • Twenty-eight current senators will have had a say in the outcomes of both.
  • Last time, most voted along party lines. The notable outlier was Republican Sen. Susan Collins, who voted to acquit Clinton, and will be voting again on whether Trump should be convicted.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Very few will be able to say they voted in the impeachment of two presidents.

Of the senators who will decide whether to convict President Donald Trump in his impeachment trial, 28 were also in Congress when former President Bill Clinton was impeached in 1998.

Clinton was acquitted. Congress voted largely on party lines, except for two Republicans — Sen. Susan Collins, who voted “not guilty” for both impeachment articles, and Sen. Richard Shelby, who voted “guilty” on one and “not guilty” on the other. The partisan divide looks likely to be the same this time.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, who was in the House at the time, even served as an impeachment manager prosecuting Clinton.

These are the 28 current senators who were in Congress during Clinton’s impeachment, and what they did then.

Republican Sen. Susan Collins was a senator. She voted “not guilty” for both impeachment articles. She didn’t think what he’d done amounted to high crimes and misdemeanors. During Clinton’s trial she also called for more evidence and witnesses to ensure the trial was fair.

Sen. Susan Collins of Maine.

Alex Wong/Getty Images


Sources: CBS News, The New York Times, Washington Post

Republican Sen. Michael Crapo was a member of the House at the beginning of the Clinton’s impeachment. He voted to impeach Clinton and then became a senator before the trial. He voted “guilty” for both impeachment articles.

Chairman of the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee Mike Crapo (R-ID) hearing listens to testimony from Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen on the “Semiannual Monetary Policy Report to the Congress” on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., February 14, 2017.

REUTERS/Joshua Roberts


Source: The Lewiston Tribune, Washington Post

Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham was in the House, and served as an impeachment manager prosecuting the president. Graham voted to impeach Clinton, and urged Democrats to resist prematurely making up their minds. “People have made up their mind in a political fashion that will hurt this country long term,” he said.

Sen. Lindsey Graham

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images


Sources: Washington Post, Salon, CBS News

Democrat Sen. Dianne Feinstein was a senator. She voted “not guilty” for both impeachment articles. She also made it clear she didn’t condone his behavior. “I do not defend it. And I do not accept it. The conduct at the heart of the charges is deplorable,” she said. After he was acquitted she pushed to censure Clinton, but the Senate didn’t back it.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein on Capitol Hill in Washington, in 2017.

Kevin Lamarque/Reuters


Sources: Los Angeles Times, SF Gate

Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell, now the Senate majority leader, was a senator. He voted “guilty” for both impeachment articles. He said the White House had tried to orchestrate a smear campaign against Republicans, and he asked the Senate floor, “Will we pursue the search for truth or will we dodge, weave and evade the truth?”

Mitch McConnell.

Drew Angerer/Getty Images


Source: Washington Post

Democrat Sen. Bernie Sanders was a member of the House. He voted against impeaching Clinton. He also said the proceedings were a waste of resources, and a distraction from the challenges America should have been dealing with.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) speaks at the NAN Conference, April 5, 2019 in New York City.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider


Sources: Washington Post, C-Span

Democrat Sen. Chuck Schumer was a senator. He voted “not guilty” to both impeachment articles. He wrote a letter to Clinton before he was acquitted, saying he was “shaken” that Clinton might be removed because of the whims of a political group who hated him and wanted to “exploit the institutions of freedom.”

Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY) talks to reporters following his party’s weekly policy luncheon at the U.S. Capitol May 16, 2017 in Washington, DC.

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images


Sources: CNN, New York Post

Republican Sen. Roy Blunt, who is now the Senate Rules Chairman, was a member of the House. He voted to impeach Clinton.

Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO) speaks to the media following their weekly policy luncheon on April 30, 2019 in Washington, DC.

Pete Marovich/Getty


Sources: RollCall, CBS News

Democrat Sen. Sherrod Brown was a member of the House. He voted against impeaching Clinton and said he should be censured instead.

Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) speaks at the NAN Conference on April 5, 2019 in New York City.

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider


Source: The Columbus Dispatch

Republican Sen. Richard Burr was a member of the House. He voted to impeach Clinton and made it clear where he thought power should be. “The United States is a nation of laws, not men,” he said. “And I do not believe we can ignore the facts or disregard the constitution so that the president can be placed above the law.”

Sen. Richard Burr.

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images


Source: The Guardian

Democrat Sen. Benjamin Cardin was a member the House. He voted against impeaching Clinton, but also clarified his vote wasn’t because he was “rallying around the president.” He told reporters one portion of Democrats were “outraged” by the impeachment, while the other half were “somewhat in bewilderment” that it was classed an impeachable offense.

Sen. Ben Cardin of Maryland in April 2019.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP


Source: CBS News, The New York Times

Democrat Sen. Dick Durbin was a senator. He voted “not guilty” for both impeachment articles.

Sen. Dick Durbin speaks at Islamic Foundation in Villa Park, Ill. Sunday, Feb. 5, 2017.

Associated Press/Nam Y. Huh


Source: The New York Times

Republican Sen. Mike Enzi was one year into his first term as a senator. He voted “guilty” for both impeachment articles.

Republican Sen. Mike Enzi.

AP


Sources: AJC, Laramie Live

Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley, now the Senate president pro tempore, was a senator then, too. He voted “guilty” for both impeachment articles. He said the “true tragedy” was the loss of the president’s moral authority. “He undermined himself when he wagged his finger and lied to the nation on national TV,” he said.

Sen. Chuck Grassley.

Alex Wong/Getty Images


Source: The New York Times

Republican Sen. James Inhofe was also a senator then. He voted “guilty” on both impeachment articles. He said not having all of the witnesses in Clinton’s impeachment would be “shirking our constitutional duty.” He said he didn’t think calling witnesses in Trump’s trial was necessary.

Sen. James Inhofe in 2017.

Manuel Balce Ceneta / AP


Sources: The Hill, NewsWeek

Democrat Sen. Patrick Leahy was a senator. He voted “not guilty” for both impeachment articles. Despite the vote, he didn’t hold back when Clinton called him up before the impeachment. To his wife’s horror, he said he told Clinton, “You’re a fool! You’re a damn, damn, damn fool!”

Patrick Leahy

Robert F. Bukaty/AP


Source: The New York Times

Democrat Sen. Ed Markey was a member of the House. He voted against impeaching Clinton. Like Feinstein, he also urged Clinton be censured. During proceedings, he said, “GOP used to stand for Grand Old Party. Now it just stands for Get Our President.”

Sen. Ed Markey in 2019.

Andrew Harnik / AP


Source: NEPR

Democrat Sen. Robert Menendez was a member of the House. He voted against impeaching Clinton. He asked Republicans where their sense of fairness was, and added, “Monica Lewinsky is not Watergate. Let he who has no sin in this chamber cast the first stone.”

Bob Menendez.

Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images


Source: CNN

Republican Sen. Jerry Moran was in the House. He voted to impeach Clinton. He said he chose to be “on the side that says no person is above the law; that this is a nation of laws, not men; that telling the truth matters; and that we should expect our public officials to conduct themselves in compliance with the highest ethical standards.”

Sen. Jerry Moran in 2019.

Alex Brandon / AP


Source: Washington Post

Democrat Sen. Patty Murray was a senator. She voted “not guilty” for both impeachment articles. She then set out how angry and dismayed she was with Clinton. “I trusted him. I thought I knew him. I refused to believe he would demean the presidency in the way that he has. His behavior was appalling and has hurt us all,” she said in a statement.

Sen. Patty Murray in March 2019.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP


Source: CNN

Republican Sen. Rob Portman was a member of the House. He voted to impeach Clinton. He said he was “particularly troubled” by Clinton’s lying under oath, and he called on him to resign.

Sen. Rob Portman in January 2019.

John Minchillo / AP


Sources: The Columbus Dispatch, Washington Post

Democrat Sen. Jack Reed was a senator. He voted “not guilty” for both impeachment articles. He was also against allowing new witnesses into Clinton’s trial, saying that it would lead to lawyers taking over, and cause the trial to take on a “life of its own.”

Sen. Jack Reed talks about bipartisan legislation to create ‘red flag’ gun laws during a news conference at the U.S. Capitol March 22, 2018 in Washington, DC.

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images


Sources: CNN, Washington Post

Republican Sen. Pat Roberts was a senator. He voted “guilty” for both impeachment articles. “I believe an open-minded individual applying Kansas common sense would reach the conclusion that I reached,” he said.

Sen. Pat Roberts.

AP


Source: CBS News

Republican Sen. Roger Wicker was a member of the House. He voted to impeach Clinton.

Senate Commerce Committee member Sen. Roger Wicker questions witnesses on Capitol Hill in Washington during the committee’s hearing on Toyota.

Manuel Balce Ceneta, File via AP


Source: Daily Journal

Democrat Sen. Ron Wyden was a senator. He voted “not guilty” for both impeachment articles. In his statement he called for the end of “toxic partisanship.”

Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) in Washington, DC, in November 2017.

Aaron P. Bernstein/Reuters


Sources: CNN, CBS News

Republican Sen. Richard Shelby was a senator. He had switched to the Republican Party in 1994. He voted “guilty” for the obstruction of justice article, and “not guilty” for the perjury article.

Sen. Richard Shelby, chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, leaves the chamber in Washington, Monday, Feb. 11, 2019.

AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite


Source: CNN, Washington Post

Democrat Sen. Debbie Stabenow was a member of the House. She voted against impeaching Clinton and also wanted to censure him instead.

Sen. Debbie Stabenow in June 2018.

Andrew Harnik / AP


Source: Michigan Radio

Also, 55 members of the House of Representatives who are still in office were there for Clinton’s impeachment.

Independent counsel Ken Starr (C) raising hand, swearing-in before House Judiciary Committee, testifying in impeachment inquiry against Pres. Clinton in Capitol Hill committee room panorama.

Terry Ashe/The LIFE Images Collection / Getty


These Republicans voted to impeach Clinton: 

  • Rep. Steve Chabot
  • Rep. Don Young
  • Rep. James Sensenbrenner
  • Rep. Hal Rogers
  • Rep. Chris Smith
  • Rep. Fred Upton
  • Rep. Ken Calvert
  • Rep. Peter King
  • Rep. Frank Lucas
  • Rep. Mac Thornberry
  • Rep. John Shimkus
  • Rep. Robert Aderholt
  • Rep. Kevin Brady
  • Rep. Kay Granger

And these Democrats voted not to impeach Clinton:

  • Rep. Zoe Lofgren
  • Rep. Steny Hoyer
  • Rep. Marcy Kaptur
  • Rep. Peter Visclosky
  • Rep. Peter DeFazio
  • Rep. John Lewis
  • Rep. (now House Speaker) Nancy Pelosi
  • Rep. Frank Pallone
  • Rep. Eliot Engel
  • Rep. Nita Lowey
  • Rep. Richard Neal
  • Rep. Jose Serrano
  • Rep. David Price
  • Rep. Rosa DeLauro
  • Rep. Collin Peterson
  • Rep. Maxine Waters
  • Rep. Jerry Nadler
  • Rep. Sanford Bishop
  • Rep. Jim Clyburn
  • Rep. Anna Eshoo
  • Rep. Alcee Hastings
  • Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson
  • Rep. Carolyn Maloney
  • Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard
  • Rep. Bobby Rush voted
  • Rep. Robert “Bobby” Scott
  • Rep. Nydia Velazquez
  • Rep. Bennie Thompson
  • Rep. Lloyd Dogget
  • Rep. Michael Doyle
  • Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee
  • Rep. Earl Blumenauer
  • Rep. Danny Davis
  • Rep. Diana DeGette
  • Rep. Ron Kind
  • Rep. James McGovern
  • Rep. Bill Pascrell
  • Rep. Brad Sherman
  • Rep. Barbara Lee
  • Rep. Adam Smith
  • Rep. Gregory Meeks

Source: Business Insider

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