Jimmy Kimmel explains the nearly impossible path to convict Trump

Thursday was day three of Donald Trump’s impeachment trial, and despite all the damning evidence that the former president incited the storming of the Capitol, it’s clear that he will not be convicted. As was true before the trial even started, s a majority of Republican senators have no intention of voting to convict. 

It’s kind of like ‘The Empire Strikes Back,’” Jimmy Kimmel joked on Thursday’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live.” “We already know how it ends, but we’re watching it anyway.”

“At this point [Democrats] could produce a video of Trump looking straight into camera saying, ‘I, Donald J. Trump, hereby incite the insurrection of violence’ and most of the Republican Senators would be like, ‘but where’s the proof? We didn’t see proof,” Kimmel said. 

Kimmel then did a helpful explainer breaking down the path to convict Trump. A two-thirds majority is needed for conviction, which means 17 Republicans would have to break with their party. Only six voted to even have the trial, and they can’t be relied on to vote to convict, but Kimmel kept them on the board. 

“Now, we know that most of these people are scared that if they vote to convict, a big chunk of their voters back home will turn on them,” Kimmel said. “They saw what the mob did to Mike Pence. They’re worried they’ll get primaried and lose their seats.” So he took anyone up for reelection in 2022 or 2024 off the board. He also removed all the senators who voted to overturn the election, as well as Lindsey Graham, “because his secrets are apparently too dark to overcome.” 

That leaves 21 senators: “Three senators who say they plan to retire at the end of their terms, twelve Republicans who won’t be up for re-election until 2026, and the six who voted yay on day one,” Kimmel said. “This is the group that can make the difference right here. They have the power.”  

Most of them, like Arkansas’ Tom Cotton and Tennessee’s Bill Hagerty, are lost causes. “These guys, they would eat the hair out of Donald Trump’s shower drain,” Kimmel cracked. “But a few of them, who knows? Maybe three ghosts will visit them in the middle of the night tonight.” 

He encouraged Americans who are represented by any of the 21 senators to contact them and tell them what they think.

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