BREAKING: The Senate has voted to acquit President Donald Trump on all impeachment charges as the impeachment trial comes to a close.
They voted first on the first impeachment charge of "abuse of power". Sen. Mitt Romney broke with his fellow Republicans to vote guilty, but his vote did not affect the outcome. In the first vote, 52 senators pronounced Trump innocent and 48 senators pronounced him guilty.
The Senate then voted 53-47 to acquit President Trump on "obstruction of Congress". On this charge, Sen. Romney voted "not guilty".
With Chief Justice John Roberts presiding, senators voted twice on Wednesday afternoon to acquit President Trump of the two charges against him, bringing an end to the third presidential impeachment trial in American history.
Trump, 73, was acquitted by the GOP-held Senate of the charges of abuse of power by a vote of 52 - 48 and of obstruction of Congress 53 - 47. The charges were brought to the Senate by the Democrat-held House of Representatives less than three months ago.
Senators sworn to do "impartial justice" were required to stand at their desks for the roll call and state their votes – "guilty" or "not guilty."
Earlier in the day, one Republican, Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah, announced on the Senate floor that he was breaking with his party and voting for impeachment. He was the only Republican to vote "guilty."
Ahead of voting, some of the most closely watched senators took to the Senate floor to tell their constituents, and the nation, what they had decided. The Senate chaplain has been opening the trial proceedings with daily prayers for the senators.
"This decision is not about whether you like or dislike this president," began GOP Sen. Susan Collins, the Maine centrist, announcing her resolve to acquit on both charges.
GOP Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio said that while he doesn't condone Trump's actions, he was not prepared to remove him from the ballot nine months before the election. "Let the people decide," he said.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell slammed House Democrats' drive to impeach Trump as "the most rushed, least fair, and least thorough" in history.
He said the two impeachment charges against Trump – that he abused his power and obstructed Congress' ensuing investigation – are "constitutionally incoherent" and don't "even approach a case for the first presidential removal in American history.″
Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer of New York accused McConnell and his GOP colleagues of sweeping Trump's misconduct under the rug.
"The administration, its top people, and Senate Republicans are all hiding the truth," Schumer said, adding that Trump tried to "blackmail a foreign country to interfere in our elections."
House Democrats prosecuting the case argued that Trump abused his power when he pressured Ukraine to investigate Democratic rival Joe Biden.
The impeachment finale comes as President Trump has just hit his highest job approval rating in the Gallup Poll.
The latest survey has him at 49 percent approval which is the best mark for the president since he took office in January in 2017.
The poll also showed that 50 percent disapprove.
Among Republicans, the president has a 94 percent approval rating compared to just seven percent among Democrats.
And 63 percent approve of the way the president is handling the economy. The public is showing its highest satisfaction with the economy in nearly 15 years.
CBN News carried the broadcast of the impeachment vote LIVE at 4 p.m. on the CBN News Channel and at CBNNews.com.