You’re a GOP Senator, privately concerned about the actions of President Trump. In your darker moments, you think what you’ve seen is worthy of his removal from office. You also really like being a Senator and don’t want to “spend more time with your family” just yet.
This is a dilemma!
When the Senate trial happens, you can vote against removal. This keeps you in good standing with the GOP base. Bonus points if you give a bunch of fiery bullshit speeches about the process! Sure, you have to lie a lot and maybe that stings your conscience a little. And you run the risk of another four years of Trump. But you get to keep your job!
On the other hand, if you defect – vote for Trump’s removal – you might succeed in removing Trump from office. Principles FTW! You will also utterly infuriate the GOP base, who will mount a primary challenge against you the next time you’re up for election (and flood you with death threats until then). And you will probably lose – no Democrats are coming to your rescue, and there’s a good chance unaffiliated voters can’t vote in GOP primaries. So, voting for removal is likely a career killing move.
What do you do?
Obviously, you vote against removal. Before that, you work to derail the House impeachment process before it gets to the Senate – to avoid a Senate vote altogether. If you really want to win, you get in line behind Lindsey Graham and start kissing Trump’s ass, hoping he loses in 2020. Because you want to keep your job, not sink your career for something as unprofitable as principles.