Impeachment views unchanged after start of Senate trial: poll

Impeachment views unchanged after start of Senate trial: poll
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A poll released Sunday showed that the early days of President TrumpDonald John TrumpFederal plan to contain Washington protests employs 7,600 personnel: report GOP Rep calls on primary opponent to condemn campaign surrogate's racist video Tennessee court rules all registered voters can obtain mail-in ballots due to COVID-19 MORE's Senate impeachment trial did little to affect Americans’ views.

The NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll found that 46 percent of registered voters supported President Trump’s removal to office, while 49 percent said the president should remain commander-in-chief. 

Pollsters discovered strong partisan divisions, with 84 percent of Democrats saying Trump should be removed from office and 92 percent of Republicans saying should stay. Independents in the new poll are split on supporting Trump’s removal, with 45 percent backing it and 50 percent against it.

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A December poll found a 48 percent to 48 percent split among all voters on whether Trump should be removed from office.

“We’ve been through an impeachment inquiry in the House, a trial in the Senate, and America’s attitudes about Donald Trump have hardly budged,” Democratic pollster Jeff Horwitt, who helped conduct the survey,  told NBC.

A majority of voters in the new poll -- 52 percent -- also say that Trump abused his power as president when asking a foreign government to investigate former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenOVERNIGHT DEFENSE: Murkowski, Mattis criticism ratchets up pressure on GOP over Trump| Esper orders hundreds of active-duty troops outside DC sent home day after reversal | Iran releases US Navy veteran Michael White Davis: 72 hours cementing the real choice for November OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Trump signs order removing environmental reviews for major projects | New Trump air rule will limit future pollution regulations, critics say | DNC climate group calls for larger federal investment on climate than Biden plan MORE. Fifty-three percent of participants said they thought Trump obstructed Congress, with 37 percent saying he didn’t. Pollsters also found strong partisan divisions on those questions.

When describing the one word that best describes the Senate trial, Democrats’ top three answers were “necessary,” “justified” and “warranted,” while Republicans’ top responses were “ridiculous,” “wasteful” and “sham.”

Almost four in 10 respondents -- 39 percent -- said the upper chamber has enough information to vote on impeachment, 37 percent say additional witnesses are needed and 22 percent say they don’t know enough to say. 

After opening statements from both sides and questions from senators, the Senate decided not to allow additional witnesses to testify in the trial, after an unsuccessful Democratic push. The impeachment trial is expected to conclude with Trump’s acquittal this week.

The poll was conducted between Jan. 26 and 29 and surveyed 1,000 registered voters. The margin of error amounted to 3.1 percentage points.