Poll: 44 percent say Trump should be removed from office

A plurality of voters say that President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump passes Pence a dangerous buck Overnight Health Care — Presented by American Health Care Association — Trump taps Pence to lead coronavirus response | Trump accuses Pelosi of trying to create panic | CDC confirms case of 'unknown' origin | Schumer wants .5 billion in emergency funds Trump nods at reputation as germaphobe during coronavirus briefing: 'I try to bail out as much as possible' after sneezes MORE should be removed from office following an impeachment trial in the Senate, according to a new Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll.

The survey found that 44 percent of voters support Trump’s removal, against 40 percent who said the Senate should take no action and 15 percent who said the president should be censured by Congress.

Opinions cut largely along partisan lines. Seventy-three percent of Democrats support removal, while 72 percent of Republicans oppose it. Independents are split down the middle, with 40 percent supporting it and 40 percent opposing it.

“Partisanship drives the answers more than anything else and the outcome was expected,” said Mark PennMark PennFree Roger Stone Sanders drags Democrats to the left; will it be 1972 all over again? Majority of voters want Trump to address health care in State of the Union: poll MORE, co-director for the Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll. “The great middle stayed in the middle.”

A majority of voters, 54 percent, said the Senate should call additional witnesses for the trial.

That appears unlikely, as Republicans believe they have enough votes to oppose a motion to consider new witnesses.

Democrats had pushed for additional witnesses, including bringing in former national security adviser John BoltonJohn BoltonOvernight Health Care — Presented by American Health Care Association — Trump taps Pence to lead coronavirus response | Trump accuses Pelosi of trying to create panic | CDC confirms case of 'unknown' origin | Schumer wants .5 billion in emergency funds Bolton's lost leverage Azar downplays chance Trump will appoint coronavirus czar MORE, as part of the examination into President Trump's push for Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden looks to shore up lead in S.C. Hillicon Valley: Dems cancel surveillance vote after pushback to amendments | Facebook to ban certain coronavirus ads | Lawmakers grill online ticketing execs | Hacker accessed facial recognition company's database Vulnerable Democrats brace for Sanders atop ticket MORE and his son, Hunter Biden. 

“The public might have supported more witnesses but they would have supported not just John Bolton but the whistleblower and the Bidens as well,” Penn said. “The Democrats would not have been able to limit the witness list.”

About two-thirds of voters said they believe a central accusation at the heart of the impeachment trial — that Trump's push to get the Ukrainian government to open an investigation into Biden and his family amounted to an abuse of power and merits removal from office.

Trump has maintained his talks with Ukraine were legal and part of a push to root out corruption.

Forty percent view the request as an impeachable offense. Thirty percent described it as misconduct but not impeachable, and an additional 30 percent said it’s within the president’s authority.

Voters also say they are tuning in for the impeachment trial. Sixty-seven percent said they’ve followed it somewhat closely or very closely.

The House impeachment managers representing Democrats are viewed favorably by 35 percent of voters, against 39 percent who view them unfavorably. Senate Democrats post a 43 favorable-42 unfavorable split.

Trump’s defense lawyers are underwater at 35 percent favorable and 46 percent unfavorable, and GOP senators post a negative 38 percent-47 percent split.

Chief Justice John Roberts has by far the best favorability rating of anyone, at 45 percent positive and 20 percent negative.

The Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll survey was conducted online within the U.S. among a representative sample of 2,527 registered voters between Jan. 27 and Jan. 29 by the Harris Poll.

Penn is an opinion contributor for The Hill and has advocated against Trump’s impeachment and removal, as well as former president Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson Clinton6 ways the primary fight is toughening up Democrats for the fall general election Rahm Emanuel: 'Panic would be the adjective to describe the mood' over Sanders Do Trump and Sanders hate America? MORE's impeachment and removal in the 90s.

Results were weighted for age within gender, region, race/ethnicity, marital status, household size, income, employment, education, political party and political ideology where necessary to align them with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online.