Registered Voters Poll poses serious questions about Democrats impeachment obsession
By Byron York
Theres no doubt Democrats in Washington are hellbent on impeaching President Trump over the Ukraine matter. But after weeks of polling it is still unclear precisely what Americans outside the Beltway think.
Much depends on how pollsters ask their questions. Some are straightforward while others are a bit more complicated. but in the last few weeks many have been a variation of: Do you support or oppose impeaching Trump?
A new poll however done by Suffolk University for USA Today gets at some of the nuance behind public opinion on the president and Ukraine.
The Suffolk pollsters gave 1000 Registered Voters an opportunity to choose among three options regarding impeachment.
Which did respondents personally prefer?
A) The House of Representatives should vote to impeach President Trump.
B) The House should continue investigating Trump but not vote to impeach him.
C) Congress should drop its investigations into President Trump and administration.
- 36 of those polled said the House should vote to impeach
- 22 said the House should continue investigation but not impeach and
- 37 said the House should drop its investigations
- 5 did not have an answer or refused to give one
Looking inside the results there are some major differences based on party gender race and more.
- 70 of Democrats said the House should vote to impeach while just
- 8 of Republicans and
- 22 of independents favored an impeachment vote.
- 21 of Democrats favored more investigation but not impeachment
- while 15 of Republicans and
- 34 of independents agreed.
- And just 8 of Democrats favored dropping the House investigations altogether.
- 71 of Republicans and 36 of independents favored the no-more-investigations option.
- 41 of women supported a House vote to impeach while just 31 of men did.
- Nearly equal numbers of women and men 22 and 23 respectively wanted to see the investigation continue without impeachment.
- 42 of men wanted to see the investigation dropped entirely versus 32 of women.
- 30 of the white voters polled wanted a House impeachment vote versus 73 of black voters.
- 45of white voters wanted the matter dropped while just 7 of black voters favored that result.
The overall message of the poll is that there is a range of opinions among voters that is more complex than much of the yes-impeach-no-dont-impeach commentary in the media today.
But the Suffolk questions do leave at least one issue unclear.
The opinions of those who want a House impeachment vote as well as those who want the House to drop its investigations altogether are pretty clear. But what about those who say the House should continue investigating Trump but not vote to impeach him? Does not mean not vote ever?
Does it mean impeach if new evidence is discovered? Or just exercise oversight?
Fortunately another question in the poll sheds some light on that. It is about the phone conversation between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky:
The White House has released a transcript summary of a July 25th phone call in which President Trump encouraged the Ukrainian president to pursue investigations involving Democratic rival Joe Biden and hacking allegations in the 2016 election.
Which comes closest to your view?
A) The phone conversation is an impeachable offense.
B) The phone conversation was wrong but doesnt rise to an impeachable offense.
C) There was nothing wrong with the phone conversation.
Thirty-eight percent said the conversation is an impeachable offense. Twenty-one percent said the conversation was wrong but not impeachable. And 31 said there was nothing wrong with the conversation. Ten percent were undecided.
That means at the moment according to Suffolk there is a bare majority that does not believe Trump should be impeached for the phone call which of course is the heart of the Democrats impeachment effort.
- The number that believes the call is an impeachable offense 38 is well below what could be called a groundswell.
The 10 who havent decided are important.
The Suffolk numbers suggest many Americans hold complex views of the Trump impeachment. Some are fine with the continued investigation although large numbers dont believe they have yet seen an impeachable offense.
The numbers of people who are ready to impeach Trump now or who believe the whole thing should be called off are not big enough to win the day.
Just as they did after the release of the Mueller report Democrats now hope televised hearings will convince Americans that the president must be impeached.
It didnt work out before.
Now the Suffolk poll suggests Democrats should be cautious as they try again.
Byron York is the chief political correspondent for the Washington Examiner a Fox News contributor and the author of The Vast Left Wing Conspiracy.