A new poll shows that 60 percent of U.S. voters want Donald Trump impeached and removed from office or formally censured.
The Harvard CAPS/Harris poll that came out yesterday says that a large majority of American voters polled think there needs to be “some kind of action” taken against Trump at this time.
Given the fact that federal prosecutors have not charged the president with a crime or even released any evidence saying he has committed crimes, these are surprisingly high numbers. The poll shows that the small amount of information about Trump’s crimes that has been reported in the media is enough for the majority of voters to form opinions about Trump.
The implication is that once special counsel Robert Mueller and other federal prosecutors issue indictments then public opinion will turn even more against the president. Trump will probably also be hurt when Mueller releases his final report on the Russia investigation sometime in the next few months.
The poll also shows that Americans have different views concerning how far Congress should go after Democrats take over the House majority next Thursday.
The poll asked voters for a response to the question of what actions Congress should take concerning Donald Trump. The choices were:
- Trump should be impeached and removed from office for his actions,
- Trump should be censured by Congress, and
- Congress should take no action.
The poll found that 39 percent of respondents believe Trump should be impeached and removed from office.
It is possible that a House of Representatives controlled by Democrats would bring impeachment proceedings against Trump. It requires only a simple majority vote by the House to impeach a president, but the Senate must also take action to remove him from office.
Conviction in the Senate requires a two-thirds vote, which means 67 senators would have to vote to remove Trump from office. With just 47 Democrats in the new Senate, this would be highly unlikely, unless more evidence comes out concerning Donald Trump’s crimes.
An additional twenty percent of poll respondents said Congress should vote to formally censure the president.
Forty-one percent of respondents chose #3: “Congress should take no action.”
This latest poll has results similar to other polls in recent months which show the percentage of voters who believe Trump should be impeached and removed from office in the range of 32 percent to 43 percent.
The percentage of voters who believe he should be censured has stayed in a range between 14 and 22 percentage.
The percentage of voters who believe that Congress should take no action has remained in the 40-percent range for several months.
It is likely that these poll numbers won’t change much until new damaging information comes out that implicate Trump in more crimes. He already faces criminal investigations into whether and how much his presidential campaign colluded and conspired with Russians to help him win the 2016 presidential election.
Several weeks ago federal prosecutors implicated the president in the Michael Cohen case concerning hush money payoffs made to Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal to keep them quiet about affairs they had with Trump before he became president.
In Cohen’s sentencing memo, federal prosecutors said Trump illegally directed the payments to the two women in violation of federal campaign finance laws. The payments can be considered illegal contributions to the Trump campaign.
Forty-nine percent of voters polled said they favor trying to impeach Trump over the hush money payoff allegations, 51 percent do not.
Mark Penn, the co-director of the Harvard CAPS/Harris poll, said:
“When it comes to going after the president on campaign violations, a narrow majority of voters said it would be a repeat of 1998 when President Clinton was acquitted over charges he lied about sexual affairs.”
Voters are evenly split on whether they believe Robert Mueller has uncovered evidence that Trump campaign officials coordinated with Russians during the 2016 election. Thirty-nine percent of respondents said they believe he has, while another 39 percent say that he has not.
I am a lifelong Democrat with a passion for social justice and progressive issues. I have degrees in writing, economics and law from the University of Iowa.