After weeks of House Democrats justifying their headlong rush to impeach President Donald Trump, a new CNN poll shows support for impeachment has fallen.
The House is expected to vote Wednesday on two articles of impeachment against Trump, concluding investigations of the president that began when Democrats took the majority in the House at the start of the year and that gathered steam this fall after the Mueller report failed to show that Trump had committed any wrongdoing in terms of collusion with Russia.
The poll found that support for impeachment, which had been at 50 percent of those polled in October and November, has now dropped to 45 percent.
That’s the lowest level found in the survey since late May, when just 41 percent of respondents backed impeachment.
At the same time, respondents who said they do not think Trump should be impeached and removed from office increased from 43 percent to 47 percent, meaning that opponents of impeachment now outnumber its supporters.
The poll’s results show disenchantment with the impeachment inquiry, and not simply from a partisan perspective. Fifty-one percent of those polled disapprove of the conduct of Republicans during the impeachment inquiry. Democrats do not fare much better, with 49 percent of those responding registering disapproval with Democrats’ performance.
The poll found that 72 percent of those responding said it was not likely that anything Democrats might conjure up for the Senate trial that would follow House approval of the articles of impeachment against Trump would change their minds on impeachment.
Among those who reject impeachment, the poll found that 82 percent of respondents believe Trump was the victim of an unfair investigation.
Seventy-seven percent said they are opposed to impeachment because they think the president is innocent of the charges Democrats have leveled against him.
Meanwhile, 78 percent of those opposing impeachment agree with the argument often made by Trump that he should not be removed from office because he is doing a good job of running the country.
The CNN poll was conducted via telephone Dec. 12-15 among a sample of 1,005 respondents. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.7 percent.
FiveThirtyEight, which has tracked weeks of impeachment polls, says support for impeachment is divided along party lines.
It reports that 83.5 percent of Democrats want Trump impeached, but only 9.8 percent of Republicans support impeachment.
As for independents, FiveThirtyEight pegs support for impeachment at 43.2 percent, a number that has fluctuated, as have they all.
As the House moves toward its expected adoption of the articles of impeachment against Trump. Sen. Josh Hawley, a Republican from Missouri, scoffed at House Democrats.
“The House impeachment articles are a joke, Laura, as you pointed out. They don’t even charge a crime,” Hawley told host Laura Ingraham on Fox News’ “The Ingraham Angle.”
“Let’s remember what an impeachment is,” he said. “[It’s] like an indictment and then it comes to the Senate for a trial. If you had the evidence for a crime, they would have charged the crime and put it in the articles of impeachment. They didn’t because they don’t have anything. This whole thing is a joke, and it’s time to get the president exonerated.”
Hawley said it was up to House Democrats to prove Trump did something wrong, and they failed.
“We have seen the hearings. Look, there is nothing there, and they didn’t charge a crime, Laura,” he said. “They had their chance, they had their kangaroo court. They had their show, their circus for weeks and weeks and months and months. …
“I can tell you, there’s no way I’m voting for impeachment for someone who has not committed any impeachable offenses.”
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