Surprise, surprise. Americans’ views of impeachment are split and largely unchanged, according to a new NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist Poll.
With the House expected to impeach President Trump by the end of the week, and after hours upon hours of congressional testimony, 48% of the country opposes impeachment, while 47% supports it.
The last time the question was asked in the poll, last month, it was 47% supporting impeachment and 46% opposing. Those results are statistically unchanged.
The latest poll was conducted between Dec. 9 and 11, just as the House Judiciary Committee was debating which articles of impeachment to introduce against the president.
“It’s like the hearings have never happened,” said Lee Miringoff, director of the Marist Institute for Public Opinion, which conducted the poll. “The arguments have only served to reinforce existing views, and everyone is rooting for their side.”
The poll found Trump’s approval rating essentially unchanged at 42%, with familiar splits evident — there are sizable gender and education gaps, with college-educated women overwhelmingly disapproving of the president.
And Americans are divided by where they live, with those in cities and suburbs disapproving of the president and people in rural areas approving of the job he’s doing.
The survey found that 51% believe that the ideas being offered by Trump would generally move the U.S. in the wrong direction, but they’re split on what they think of what Democrats are offering — 45% say Democrats’ ideas would move the country in the wrong direction, and 44% say they would move it in the right one.
“There’s not a lot of persuasion going on,” Miringoff said. “This is definitely lining up to be all about the base. You can do all the message-testing and convincing and persuasion [efforts], but it’s going to be about targeting your group and making sure they show.”
The survey of 1,744 adults was conducted between Dec. 9 and 11 by the Marist Poll using live telephone callers via cell phone and landline and has a margin of error of +/- 3.5 percentage points. There were 1,508 registered voters surveyed, and where they are referenced, the poll has a margin of error of +/- 3.7 percentage points. There were 704 Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents surveyed, and where they are referenced, results have a +/- 5.4 percentage point margin of error.