A majority of Kentuckians disapprove of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-KY) job performance, a Mason-Dixon Polling & Strategy survey taken ahead of the formal start of former President Trump’s impeachment trial found.
The survey, taken February 1-4, 2021, among 625 registered Kentucky voters, found 41 percent approving of McConnell’s job performance and 53 percent disapproving. Six percent remain unsure.
Among Republicans, specifically, McConnell garners a 62 percent approval and 29 percent disapproval.
McConnell, who has remained relatively quiet in the first week of Trump’s impeachment trial, has not revealed if he intends to acquit the former president. Rather, his office has referred to his past remarks in which he expressed his desire to “listen to the arguments” on both sides.
“I think that’s what we ought to do. That’s what I said before it started. That’s still my view,” McConnell said.
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), a fellow Kentucky senator, has been more vocal about his beliefs regarding the nature of the impeachment trial, holding the position that it remains unconstitutional. His approval, the poll showed, is higher than McConnell’s, standing at 53 percent.
The survey’s margin of error is +/- 4 percent.
McConnell made waves during a January 19 floor speech, where he asserted that the January 6 rioters were “fed lies” and “provoked by the president and other powerful people.”
“And they tried to use fear and violence to stop a specific proceeding of the first branch of the federal government which they did not like,” he said.
“But we pressed on. We stood together and said an angry mob would not get veto power over the rule of law in our nation,” the Kentucky Republican added:
Sen. Majority Leader McConnell: Insurrectionists were "provoked by the president and other powerful people." pic.twitter.com/6kqSlAJHky
— The Recount (@therecount) January 19, 2021
The claim — that Trump incited the protesters who stormed the Capitol on January 6 — is precisely the argument House impeachment managers have attempted to make.
Despite McConnell’s remarks, he was among 44 senators who voted against proceeding with the impeachment trial after an hours-long debate on the constitutionality. Six Republicans joined the Democrats in voting to proceed. Those included Sens. Susan Collins (R-ME), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Mitt Romney (R-UT), Ben Sasse (R-NE), Pat Toomey (R-PA), and Bill Cassidy (R-LA).
“The issue at hand is, is it constitutional to impeach a president who has left office, and the House managers made a compelling, cogent case, and the president’s team did not,” Cassidy told reporters.
Prior to the impeachment trial, McConnell reportedly told colleagues that their final vote, on whether to convict or acquit Trump, would be “vote of conscience.”