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CNN Poll: Fewer support impeaching Trump

With Democrats set to take control of the House in January, speculation abounds about whether the new majori...

Posted: Dec 14, 2018 1:50 PM
Updated: Dec 14, 2018 1:50 PM

With Democrats set to take control of the House in January, speculation abounds about whether the new majority would impeach the President.

Americans break against that idea, according to a new CNN poll conducted by SSRS. Half, 50%, say they don't feel that Trump ought to be impeached and removed from office, while 43% say he should be. Support for impeachment has dipped some since September, when 47% favored it, and is about the same as in a June poll (42% favored it then). Support for impeachment of Trump remains higher than it was for each of the last three presidents at any time it was asked. It's on par with President Richard Nixon, who 43% of Americans said should be impeached and removed from office in a March 1974 Harris poll.

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The shift on impeachment comes mostly from political independents. In September, they were evenly split on the question, with 48% behind impeachment and 47% opposed. Now, 36% favor impeachment and 55% are opposed.

There's also been a meaningful shift on the question among younger adults (53% of those under age 45 backed impeachment in September, now that's down to 45%) and racial and ethnic minorities (66% favored it in September, 50% do now).

Related: Full poll results

Trump himself warned his supporters during the 2016 midterm campaign that Democrats would try to impeach him, although Democratic leaders like soon-to-be House Speaker Nancy Pelsoi have dismissed the idea.

More recently, Trump has been worrying about the prospect, according to reporting by CNN's Jim Acosta, as a number of his former associates cooperate with the special counsel investigation into possible collusion by Trump's campaign with Russians interfering in the 2016 election.

The incoming Democratic chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Jerry Nadler of New York, told CNN's Jake Tapper that if allegations by Michael Cohen that Trump directed him to issue illegal payments to women alleging affairs to keep them quiet during the 2016 election were true, those would constitute "impeachable offenses." At the same time, Nadler made no suggestion Democrats would pursue impeachment against Trump.

One reason Democrats might not impeach Trump even if he is ultimately implicated by special counsel Robert Mueller is that while they control the House, and so could potentially impeach him in that chamber with a simple majority, Republicans will still control of the US Senate. It would require the defection of 20 Republican senators to remove Trump from office if he were impeached by Democrats in the House.

That defection among the President's partisans failed to happened when Republicans in the House impeached Bill Clinton in the late 1990s. There were nowhere near the 67 votes needed in the Senate to remove Clinton from office.

Trump, however, is not nearly as popular now as Clinton was then. Clinton reached more than 70% approval when the House voted to impeach him in December of 1998, according to CNN/Gallup/USA Today polling.

Former President Richard Nixon, who resigned rather than be impeached, had a much lower approval rating than Trump has now. He was under 30% approval when he resigned in August of 1974. Trump's approval rating has remained remarkably steady, in the high 30s and low 40s -- much less than Clinton, but much higher than Nixon.

All of this remains academic since Democratic leaders have not expressed any interest in impeaching Trump.

The CNN Poll was conducted by SSRS December 6 through 9 among a random national sample of 1,015 adults reached on landlines or cellphones by a live interviewer. Results for the full sample have a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.8 percentage points, it is larger for subgroups.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 308111

Reported Deaths: 7122
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto20826248
Hinds19910411
Harrison17510302
Rankin13334276
Jackson13118243
Madison9908210
Lee9871170
Jones8297160
Forrest7525147
Lauderdale7198237
Lowndes6272144
Lamar611084
Lafayette6039117
Washington5281133
Bolivar4772129
Oktibbeha455897
Panola4445103
Pearl River4428141
Warren4284118
Marshall4276100
Pontotoc416972
Monroe4061132
Union403975
Neshoba3994176
Lincoln3871109
Hancock372885
Leflore3468124
Sunflower329589
Tate322782
Pike3188104
Scott310872
Yazoo304468
Alcorn298065
Itawamba297177
Copiah293265
Coahoma289778
Simpson288284
Tippah284868
Prentiss275759
Marion266079
Leake261373
Wayne261341
Grenada255384
Covington254780
Adams246082
Newton245161
George238147
Winston225981
Tishomingo222267
Jasper219748
Attala213473
Chickasaw205057
Holmes186872
Clay182854
Stone179331
Clarke177076
Tallahatchie175540
Calhoun163531
Yalobusha159236
Smith158834
Walthall130643
Greene129433
Lawrence126423
Noxubee126233
Montgomery125542
Perry125138
Carroll120926
Amite120141
Webster113532
Jefferson Davis105432
Tunica102725
Claiborne101330
Benton97325
Kemper95428
Humphreys94332
Franklin82123
Quitman78916
Choctaw73417
Wilkinson64928
Jefferson64828
Sharkey49617
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 520503

Reported Deaths: 10722
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson754091487
Mobile38938798
Madison33898495
Tuscaloosa25297443
Montgomery23992567
Shelby23124239
Baldwin20652300
Lee15541165
Calhoun14301311
Morgan14145270
Etowah13665346
Marshall11967219
Houston10381278
Elmore10001200
Limestone9822147
Cullman9481188
St. Clair9435234
Lauderdale9223227
DeKalb8748181
Talladega8071171
Walker7100275
Jackson6762110
Autauga6734103
Blount6497135
Colbert6210130
Coffee5404112
Dale4766110
Russell429038
Franklin419982
Chilton4087109
Covington4056114
Tallapoosa3898146
Escambia388574
Dallas3531149
Chambers3503122
Clarke346560
Marion3066100
Pike305876
Lawrence295395
Winston272572
Bibb256459
Marengo248661
Geneva245875
Pickens233059
Barbour225255
Hale218775
Butler212566
Fayette209260
Henry187744
Cherokee182144
Randolph176941
Monroe172040
Washington164238
Macon154848
Clay149555
Crenshaw149257
Cleburne146241
Lamar139334
Lowndes136553
Wilcox124327
Bullock121340
Conecuh109128
Perry107926
Sumter102932
Coosa99328
Greene91034
Choctaw58724
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