Republicans are increasingly turning to a simple message to motivate their voter base to turn out for the 2018 midterm elections: stop impeachment.
The message is one that unites all factions of the party, save for the last few #NeverTrump holdouts on cable news pundit panels. Republicans do not want to see President Donald Trump removed from office.
The Democratic Party base, by contrast, would love to see Trump impeached. Members of congress, and candidates, who have urged impeachment have been cheered by the so-called “resistance” and celebrated by left-wing media outlets.
But the voters do not want impeachment.
As the New York Times observed Sunday: “Polls show most voters are not supportive of impeachment at the moment.” Only 39% wanted to see impeachment proceedings brought in the House of Representatives in a recent Morning Consult/POLITICO poll (versus 48% who did not).
Some Democratic Party leaders understand the risks of impeachment as a campaign message, and have been urging their colleagues to avoid the idea.
As Breitbart News has noted repeatedly, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has clashed with California billionaire Tom Steyer, who is promoting impeachment through a massive nationwide ad campaign.
But Pelosi’s task is made more difficult by the fact that her fellow Democrats, especially those from California, seem eager to press for impeachment.
Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), one of the first Democrats to propose impeachment, told her state party’s convention in February: “I say it is time to get ready for impeachment … I cannot wait and I’m counting on special counsel Mueller to connect the dots. … Democrats, I don’t care what the Republicans say. I say impeach 45!”
As a result, the Times notes, Republicans have been increasingly using the prospect of impeachment to warn voters about what a return to Democratic control of the House and Senate would mean:
Last week, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas used his re-election kickoff rally to introduce a video featuring a faux news anchor reading would-be headlines were conservatives not to vote in November.
“Senate Majority Leader Schumer announced the impeachment trial of President Trump,” one of the anchors says.
Last week, America Rising, a Washington-area candidate-tracking and opposition-research firm that assists Republicans, sent out a fund-raising email that read, “Right now the only thing standing between the president and the Democrats’ underhanded impeachment attempts is the Republican majority in the House fighting to defend our president.”
Or as Representative Sean Duffy of Wisconsin, a Republican, put in last week in a talk radio interview: “Do you think that the far-left Resist movement base of the Democrat Party would accept anything other than impeachment?”
Some Republicans are wary of the message, fearful that it may sound alarmist — or even encourage Democrats to pursue impeachment if they do win the House, which some polls suggest is likely.
But Democrats clearly need little encouragement. After six House Democrats called for impeachment in December, 66 did so in January.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named to Forward’s 50 “most influential” Jews in 2017. He is the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.