I will never lose hope
Throughout the impeachment trial, I've thought a lot about what this country stands for. For me, as the son of an immigrant whose family came to the United States from Germany in the 1930s, America stands as a beacon of liberty, equal justice, and democracy. Under the Constitution, we are governed not by monarchs--who act with impunity and without accountability--but by elected officers who answer to and work for "We The People."
I hope you can take a moment to watch and share the speech I just delivered on the Senate Floor before our final vote on Wednesday.
VIDEO: U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich delivers remarks on the impeachment of President Donald Trump, February 3, 2020.
The Senate has a duty and a moral responsibility to uphold our democratic republic. Over the last two weeks, I fear that the Senate has failed in that duty. I am deeply disappointed that nearly all of my Republican colleagues refused to allow for the kind of witness testimony and documentary evidence that any legitimate trial would include. You cannot conduct a fair trial without witnesses. In my view, you also can't have a legitimate acquittal without a fair trial. That the Senate refused to bring forward evidence and testimony that would have shed more light on the facts is truly astonishing.
Despite this, the facts as we know them are clear and plain. President Trump pressured the government of Ukraine, an American ally, not for our national security interests but for his own selfish and corrupt political interests. When he was caught, he sought to cover it up by suppressing documents and preventing witnesses from testifying before Congress and the American people. President Trump has proven to be unfit for the office he occupies. He presents a clear and present danger to our national security and, more fundamentally, to our democracy. That is why my conscience and my duty to defend our Constitution compel me to vote to convict Donald Trump.
We should all fear what President Trump will do next if the Senate does not hold him accountable for the clear abuses of power he has already committed. This is the same president who praises dictators and despots and jeopardizes our international alliances. He stole billions of dollars from military construction funds to pay for his monument to division and racism. He is more focused on lobbing insults and spreading Russian conspiracy theories on Twitter than he is on his intelligence briefings.
Right now, patriotic Americans working in the State Department, for our intelligence agencies, and serving in the military are defending us from grave threats. These Americans pledge to obey the orders of their commander-in-chief. They trust that their commander-in-chief's loyalty and sole focus is squarely on the best interests of the United States of America. I don't say this lightly: President Trump has betrayed that trust. He promised to put America first. Instead, he put himself first.
Despite what the Senate is about to do, and the danger I fear it will bring about, I will never lose hope in what America stands for. That's because "We The People," not any king or dictator, still hold immense power in this nation. It is up to all of us now to wield that power.
United States Senator