Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, accompanied by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of Calif. and other congress members speaks during a news conference on Trump Putin Helsinki Summit at Capitol Hill in Washington on Tuesday, July 17, 2018. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)
Despite bizarre polls generated by CNN that no one — not even Democrats — believes,
Highest level of support for impeachment, by president:
Clinton (1998) 29%
W. Bush (2006) 30%
Obama (2014) 33%
Trump (2019) 50%https://t.co/GLkp9xP9Zj
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) November 27, 2019
the overall trend shows that the nation is basically split over the issue and all the polls show that support for President Trump is hardening. None of these polls make a lot of difference in reality because impeachment is not a popular vote question and GOP senators feel no electoral pressure to vote to oust Trump and a great deal to vote against removing him from office.
Where the impeachment struggle really counts is in the race for the House. Nancy Pelosi is House Speaker thanks to a relatively small number of districts that had voted for Trump that flipped to Democrat in 2018. Impeachment is not playing well there. In fact, it is playing so poorly that the media is giving Pelosi a wave-off. From the New York Times: They Voted Democratic. Now They Support Trump.
Nearly two-thirds of voters in six battleground states who voted for President Trump in 2016 — but for Democratic congressional candidates in 2018 — say they intend to back the president against each of his top rivals, according to recent polling by The New York Times Upshot/Siena College.
The results suggest that the party’s winning formula in last year’s midterms may not be so easy to replicate in a presidential election. The Democrats’ relatively moderate House candidates succeeded in large part by flipping a crucial segment of voters who backed the president in 2016. If these voters remain open-minded again in 2020, Democrats will have a ready-made blueprint for winning back the crucial Rust Belt battlegrounds.
Think about it for a moment. Over a year out and in the midst of an impeachment kerfuffle, the Democrats have already lost two-thirds of the voters that gave them a House majority. This is before the general election pits a candidate who is guaranteed to support all manner of anti-American and anti-common-sense ideas…like paying for sex changes for prisoners.
Most of the people are impressed with what President Trump has done, and, unlike a lot of people at The Bulwark and The Resurgent, they seem to understand they are voting for a president, not for a religious leader.
“If you’re going to Washington, you need to do something,” he said. “If the only thing you’re going to do the whole time you’re there is try to get rid of the president, that’s a problem. I mean, Trump is not a great person, but you’ve got to get some work done.”
“He’s not exactly the person I’d have as my best friend,” said Ms. California, who currently lives in Los Angeles as a traveling nurse. “But he’s a great president. Most politicians just talk about doing things, but Trump does them.”
Mr. Trump is “an egotistical, overbearing man,” she said — but said that doesn’t change what he’s achieved.
“You’re all going to be very surprised because all these quiet little Christian women aren’t saying anything right now, but they are going to vote for Trump again,” she said.
As a segue to that, there is this;
Many of the voters cited economic strength as a major reason to support Mr. Trump in 2020, even if they didn’t support him last time. Also, certain voters who support Trump said they had soured on Democrats because of partisan fighting, culminating in impeachment hearings.
Today, the Associated Press finds impeachment is a dud: Impeachment fight leaves voters cold in contested Wisconsin.
After 30 hours of televised hearings, a dozen witnesses, at least a couple of major revelations and scores of tweeted rebuttals, voters in Wisconsin and nationwide aren’t changing their minds about removing the Republican president. If they came into the inquiry defensive of Trump, they likely still are. And if they were inclined to think the president abused his power, they didn’t need televised hearings to prove it.
“For the most part, most Americans already have pretty solidified views of the president,” said Josh Schwerin, senior strategist for the Democratic super PAC Priorities USA. “There’s a small segment of the population that can be moved, and they’re not paying as close attention to the day-to-day ins and outs of the impeachment hearings.”
It’s a disappointing — if not unexpected — response for Democrats, who had hoped to use the hearings to sway public opinion. Without that backing, it’s virtually impossible to imagine Republican senators voting to convict Trump.
Again, the voters realize that Trump is not a Messiah, something that the NeverTrump swath of the punditocracy can’t quite get through their minds, but they’ve balanced that with other things:
Republicans, meanwhile, will need to maintain their coalition of white working-class voters and suburban moderates to hold onto a swing state like Wisconsin. That means persuading those voters to focus on the economy.
There are signs of success for Republicans on that front. Several Republicans across Racine County said that though they didn’t like Trump’s tone and were tired of the controversies, they were happy with the economy — and expected nothing less from the president to begin with.
“He’s probably guilty of something. … I thought he might run into problems because it’s just the way he is,” said Scott Davis, a 67-year-old landscaper from Sturtevant, a manufacturing town that’s a key base for Republican votes in the county.
But Davis said his business has flourished, and he lauded Trump’s handling of the economy. Controversies or not, Davis said he sees no reason not to support the president in 2020.
“In a lot of ways, (Trump’s) not suited to be president, but he’s done a lot of good for the country,” Davis said. “I would probably vote for him again, just because of the economy.”
David Titus, a 68-year-old retired banker from just outside Racine, said Trump “runs his mouth too much,” but he’s still satisfied with the president’s performance.
“I like what he’s done. I don’t like the way he’s doing it,” he said.
These sentiments echo the findings of a large scale series of focus groups conducted by the left-wing dark money group, House Majority Forward, of Democrat-leaning voters in districts that had flipped in 2018. (READ: Democrat Dark Money Group Sounds Red Alert on Impeachment’s Impact on the Democrats in 2020,) They note that the perception of Trump playing fast and loose with many norms is baked into the voters’ decision process:
Almost nobody in the groups said they are intentionally following impeachment news. Several are avoiding it. There was a great deal of ambivalence about impeachment and apparently more support for dropping it than pursuing it. The proceeding is seen a dominating the Democrats’ agenda. At least one person in each group could clearly articulate the charge against Trump and Ukraine. No one thought the charges were related to Russia. Voters were divided on whether Trump’s actions were appropriate or not or criminal or not even though they all seemed to agree that the charges involved Trump trying to enlist the Ukraine to “dig up dirt” on Joe Biden. So, the question in their minds was whether the significance of this rises to the level of impeachment and whether this process will dominate the government’s work. The inherent sense of corruption of all politicians allowed space for many to believe that what Trump did was commonplace, and ultimately several were ready to let Trump off the proverbial hook by characterizing the charges as “politics” without digging deeper to determine of the charges are impeachable or not. Few called it a crime although some mentioned he abused his power
It is not that this is unknown. We already know that the impeachment vote will be party-line in favor and several Democrats will break ranks and vote against it.
*Axne (IA): "I didn't run to impeach Trump"
*Brindisi (NY): "undecided"
*Lamb (PA): *crickets
*Lawrence (MI): "censure instead"
*Bullfrog (MD): Croaked, seat not filled
*Hill (CA): Resigned in disgrace, seat not filled
*Van Dyne (NJ): opposed
— Larry Schweikart (@LarrySchweikart) November 26, 2019
Lawrence has been strong-armed into returning to the fold but you know that more endangered freshmen Democrats will jump ship because there is no upside to the kamikaze mission Pelosi and Schiff want them to take.
Titus predicted, however, that the impeachment proceedings could backfire. He said he’s heard from others who are fed up of the fighting and just want the president to be allowed to do his job.
“I think the longer it goes, the worse it gets for the Democrats,” he said.
I think that is true. And when this Schiff-show makes its way to the Senate where Mitch McConnell will control the action, it will be Adam Schiff who ends up on trial. And that is not going to be very helpful to the Democrats.