Rasmussen: 52% of Voters Say Senior Law Enforcement Officials Illegally Targeted Trump

Former FBI Director James Comey is sworn in during a hearing before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence on Capitol Hill on June 8, 2017. Comey's memoir will be published this spring. BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/GETTY
BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/GETTY

A Rasmussen poll released Monday found 52 percent of likely U.S. voters say senior law enforcement officials broke the law in seeking to prevent Donald Trump from becoming president in 2016.

The telephone and online survey results showed 39 percent of voters say it is unlikely law enforcement officials broke the law in targeting Trump.

“These findings are virtually unchanged in surveying since February of last year,” Rasmussen Reports notes.

What has changed, however, is the percentage of voters who say the senior law enforcement officials who targeted Trump should be jailed if found guilty of breaking the law.

A plurality (43 percent) of respondents say the officials should be jailed – up from 25 percent in February, while 22 percent say officials who acted illegally should simply be fired.

Despite these results, only 34 percent of likely voters believe the law enforcement officials responsible will face criminal charges for illegally targeting Trump. Of those who participated in the survey, 55 percent say criminal prosecution of these individuals is unlikely.

Of the voters surveyed, 77% say they have been closely following the news about the Justice Department inspector general’s investigation of the FBI, with 41% saying they have been following reports “very closely.” Among those following “very closely,” 55% say it is “very likely” that senior law enforcement officials broke the law in an effort to block Trump from winning the presidency.

Related to these results are those from a survey in September, when the U.S. Justice Department’s inspector general revealed that James Comey improperly leaked information to the news media while he led the FBI. A Rasmussen survey at that time found voters, by a 47% to 35% margin, said Comey should be criminally prosecuted.

The survey of 1,000 likely voters was conducted December 12 and 15, 2019. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.

Of those surveyed, 33 percent identified as Republicans, 37 percent as Democrats, and 30 percent as “other.”

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