The Louisiana Republican Party moved swiftly to punish GOP Sen. Bill Cassidy for his vote to convict former President Donald Trump in his Senate trial for sparking the Capitol riot.
“The Executive Committee of the Republican Party of Louisiana has unanimously voted to censure Senator Bill Cassidy for his vote cast earlier today to convict former President Donald J. Trump on the impeachment charge,” the party said in a statement late Saturday.
Cassidy was one of seven Republican senators who broke ranks to vote with all Senate Democrats to convict Trump on the one impeachment charge of “incitement of an insurrection” for his role in the Jan. 6 storming of the Capitol that left five people dead.
The final vote was 57-43, far short of the 67 votes required to convict Trump in the chamber.
Cassidy stood by his decision to convict in an interview on Sunday, arguing Trump intentionally stirred up the mob of his supporters on Jan. 6.
“It was clear that he wished lawmakers be intimidated,” Cassidy said. “And even after he knew there was violence taking place, he continued to basically sanction the mob being there. And not until later did he ask them to leave. All of that points to a motive and a method, and that is wrong. He should be held accountable.”
The executive committee’s vote against Cassidy was unanimous.
“We condemn, in the strongest possible terms, the vote today by Sen. Cassidy to convict former President Trump,” the members said. “Fortunately, clearer heads prevailed and President Trump has been acquitted of the impeachment charge filed against him.”
Cassidy joined six Republican senators – Richard Burr of North Carolina, Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Mitt Romney of Utah, Ben Sasse of Nebraska and Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania – to convict.
Louisiana’s other Republican senator, John Kennedy, voted to acquit.
“Impeachment is not supposed to be political sport where one party seeks advantage over the other at the expense of the country. The merits of the Democrats’ case were not even close,” he said.
Executive committee secretary Mike Bayham said retribution against Cassidy “couldn’t wait.”
”Many Republicans believe this was a betrayal and required immediate action,” he told the USA Today Network.
Cassidy won reelection to a six-year term in November.
Other Republicans in the House and Senate, including Sasse and Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming, have been targeted by their state parties for criticism.
Cheney was among 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach Trump on Jan. 13.
With Post wires