National Public Radio (NPR) reported on Saturday that “support for impeachment hearings grows.” It was interpreting results from a survey that NPR itself funded (using taxpayer monies) along with help from PBS (Public Broadcasting Service — also taxpayer funded) and the Marist Poll (funded by Marist College). Writer Domenico Montanaro noted that, based on that poll, “There is a growing desire for impeachment proceedings to begin against Trump.” He then admitted that “Americans are still split overall on what to do after the release of the Mueller report.”
He reported that “a slim majority of Americans (52 percent) want one of the following: to begin impeachment proceedings (22 percent), to continue investigations into potential political wrongdoing of Trump (25 percent), or to publicly reprimand Trump — that is, censure him (five percent).”
Montanaro noted that last month just 16 percent of those polled by NPR/PBS/Marist wanted to “start impeachment proceedings against President Trump,” while this month that number is 22 percent. What he failed to note is that those polled who want to “continue the investigations” dropped from 33 percent to 25 percent.
The poll surveyed 944 “adults,” only 783 of whom were even registered to vote, with a margin of error of =/- 4.5 percentage points.
There was good news for Trump in that poll, but that didn’t appear until page four: “In this poll, 51% said they will ‘definitely vote against’ Trump in next year’s presidential election.” In January, that number was 57 percent. Montanaro admitted that in 2016, 54 percent of Americans didn’t vote for Trump or, to put it another way, according to this poll, Trump’s polling numbers are better today than they were when he got elected!
The NPR/PBS/Marist poll asked only 783 registered voters, not “likely” voters. Rasmussen Reports focuses on those who say they are likely to vote next November, and their latest survey on the matter reveals that 58 percent of them say that the results of the Mueller report are unlikely to lead to the president’s impeachment, while only 14 percent feel that his impeachment is very likely.
Democrats hope that public opinion will turn against the president, especially in light of the White House blocking former staff members from responding to demands from the Democrat-controlled House for still more documents and more time in front of their committees. Representative Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, subpoenaed both Hope Hicks, the former White House communications director, and Annie Donaldson, chief of staff to former White House counsel Don McGahn, but the White House said no, claiming that releasing the hundreds of documents covering dozens of topics requested would be a repeat of the Mueller investigation and the documents were “subject to claim of executive privilege.” The Wall Street Journal pointed out that both Hicks and Donaldson spent hours in front of the Mueller committee and that “Donaldson’s testimony and notes … were prominently featured in the Mueller report.”
Nadler, not willing to take no for an answer, announced that his committee will be holding a hearing on Monday, calling it “Lessons from the Mueller Report: Presidential Obstruction and Other Crimes” and inviting various “legal experts” to testify. One of those is 80-year-old John Dean, a noisy anti-Trumper who served as White House counsel during the Nixon administration. He is expected to regale the committee with old Watergate investigation stories about how Nixon administration officials broke the law in the cover-up. It’s worth mentioning that Dean himself was part of that cover-up, pleading guilty to a felony but receiving a reduced sentence in exchange for testifying against his fellow miscreants.
All of this is dangerous foolishness to another Democrat who at least recognizes the dead end facing Nadler and his ilk if they continue to pursue Trump. Bret Stephens, an op-ed columnist for the New York Times, has been a virulent anti-Trumper since the days of Trump’s campaign, becoming part of the original Stop Trump movement back in early 2016. But he had a moment of clarity last Tuesday, writing: “Impeachment will not end Donald Trump’s presidency, since the Senate will never vote to convict. Impeachment is more likely to help Trump politically than it is to hurt him…. Impeachment will further polarize the country and consume the country’s attention away from everything else.”
Stephens went on to say that right now, the president is in control of his own political future thanks to the damage being inflicted on the Democrat Party by the likes of Nadler: “I know I sound like a broken record, but the Democratic candidate is going to be the underdog in the election, no matter what the polls say right now. [Trump] has produced a strong economy and incumbents usually get re-elected.”
With anti-Trumpers such as Montanaro stretching the truth to score a point against Trump and Nadler setting up a public display of “expert” opinions against the president, it’s clear that the Democrats have run out of viable options to keep Trump from being reelected. Real pollsters such as Rasmussen are showing that the average voter just plain isn’t interested in rehashing the Mueller report, but it’s the only thing anti-Trump Democrats have left in their increasingly threadbare bag of tricks.
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