Most Americans believe that the Senate impeachment trial for former President Trump will only serve to “cause more division” in the country, a Rasmussen Reports survey released Thursday found.
The survey, taken January 25-26 among 1,000 likely U.S. voters, asked, “Will the Senate trial on Trump’s impeachment help unite the country or will it cause more division? Or will it not make much difference?”
Fifty-seven percent, overall, said it will only serve to divide the country compared to the 19 percent who said it will help “unite” the country. Another 20 percent said it will not make much of a difference, and four percent expressed no opinion. Republicans are significantly more likely to believe that the proceedings will divide the country — 83 percent compared to the nine percent who said it would unite the nation.
Democrats are virtually split across the board. A plurality, or 35 percent, said the trial will unite the country, followed by 31 percent who said it will not make a difference and 30 percent who said it will divide the country further. The majority of voters outside of either major party, 61 percent, also believe the trial will divide the country.
Additionally, half of those surveyed do not believe that Trump should be convicted for “high crimes and misdemeanors,” compared to the 45 percent who said he should be.
Per Rasmussen Reports:
In the immediate aftermath of violence at the Capitol and a House impeachment vote on January 13, half of voters supported removing President Trump from office before Joe Biden’s January 20 inauguration. Now that Biden is in the White House, however, there is less support for convicting Trump in the Senate trial.
Male voters are strongly in favor of acquittal, with 56% saying the Senate should not convict, compared to 41% who say the Senate should find Trump guilty of “high crimes and misdemeanors.” Women are more evenly divided, with 49% for conviction and 45% for acquitting Trump.
The survey’s margin of error is +/- three percent.
The impeachment trial is expected to begin the week of February 8, although Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) declared the trial “dead on arrival” following 45 senators supporting his motion questioning the constitutionality of impeaching Trump:
The Senate just voted on my constitutional point of order.
45 Senators agreed that this sham of a “trial” is unconstitutional.
That is more than will be needed to acquit and to eventually end this partisan impeachment process.
This “trial” is dead on arrival in the Senate.
— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) January 26, 2021
Only five GOP senators joined Democrats: Sens. Mitt Romney (R-UT), Ben Sasse (R-NE), Susan Collins (R-ME), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), and Pat Toomey (R-PA).