Billionaire impeachment activist Tom Steyer believes Republican operatives think GOP voters will be more motivated to turn out in 2018 to oppose House Minority Leader and potential Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) than to vote against the potential impeachment of President Donald Trump.
“If you look at what Republicans are using in their advertising, which is a pretty good measure of what they think will drive their constituents to the polls, it’s taxes, immigration, and Nancy Pelosi,” he told BuzzFeed’s Profile on Sunday evening. “It’s not impeachment.”
A recent USA Today report found that Pelosi, who has vowed to run for Speaker again if Democrats take back the House, has been targeted in more than a third of the commercials run by GOP House candidates.
Top Democrats like Pelosi, who has seen poll after poll that have found that a majority of Americans oppose impeaching Trump, have tried to distance themselves from impeachment zealots like Steyer and Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA).
Impeachment has consistently polled terribly for Democrats, which is why Pelosi even said that running on impeachment would be a “gift” to Republicans. A recent NPR poll, for instance, found that a plurality (47%) of registered voters would definitely vote against candidates who want to impeach Trump.
Nationalizing the midterm elections by running against impeachment could unite Republicans and motivate the types of infrequent voters who do not show up in polls but powered Trump to a shocking White House win in 2016 to turn out again in 2018 and stop the so-called blue wave.
But Republican-aligned election entities have focused more on Pelosi and fiscal issues, as Steyer observed.
Steyer, on the other hand, argued on Monday that he thinks turning out left-wing voters who want to impeach Trump will allow Democrats to take back the House.
And he is putting his money where his mouth is, announcing that he is putting in $10 million more into his efforts to impeach Trump. Steyer has already built a $110 million impeachment army that has 1,000 staffers and 2,000 volunteers across his political groups.
“Midterm elections are about turning out your votes and making a statement,” Steyer reportedly said. ”On average, we have 10,000 supporters in the country’s most competitive House districts.”
Steyer said he expects many of the key races “will be decided by a few thousand, if not hundreds, of votes.”
“That means that if our movement shows up in November, we can change who controls the House,” Steyer continued.