Poll: Half of voters say Ukraine whistleblower should publicly testify before Congress

Half of voters say the whistleblower at the center of President TrumpDonald John TrumpZuckerberg launches public defense of Facebook as attacks mount Trump leaning toward keeping a couple hundred troops in eastern Syria: report Warren says making Israel aid conditional on settlement building is 'on the table' MORE's Ukraine controversy should publicly testify before Congress, according to a Hill-HarrisX poll released Tuesday.

The survey found that 51 percent of registered voters said the whistleblower should testify in a public setting on Capitol Hill, while 35 percent said the person should testify privately in a congressional committee hearing.

Just 14 percent of respondents said the whistleblower should not testify at all.

Democrats were the most divided: Forty-eight percent said the whistleblower should give public testimony, compared to 43 percent who said private testimony is preferable.

A little more than half of Republicans (54 percent) and independents (52 percent) want the whistleblower to testify in public.

The survey comes as House Democrats weigh whether to mask the whistleblower's identity.

The Washington Post reported Tuesday that Democratic lawmakers are taking some precautions to protect the whistleblower over concerns that their Republican colleagues could leak the person's identity.

According to officials familiar with the situation, those steps include distorting the whistleblower’s appearance, having them testify in a remote location or holding a staff-only session that would prohibit lawmakers from attending and asking questions.

The whistleblower alleged in the August complaint, made public last month, that Trump tried to pressure Ukraine into digging up dirt on former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenZuckerberg launches public defense of Facebook as attacks mount Graham: 'Stupid' for Trump to ask China to investigate Biden Romney: Republicans don't criticize Trump because they fear it will help Warren MORE. The complaint prompted Democrats to launch an impeachment inquiry into the president.

The Hill-HarrisX survey was conducted online among 1,000 voters from Oct. 6-7. The margin of error for the full sampling is plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

—Tess Bonn