Trump could get impeachment boost, poll shows

Emma Kinery

Democrats beware: A huge majority of Americans believes impeaching President Donald Trump would fail and some believe it might even boost his re-election effort, according to a new Monmouth University poll.

The survey showed that 75% of respondents believed it would be unlikely that Trump would be convicted in the Republican-controlled Senate even if he were impeached by the Democratic-led House.

President Donald Trump addresses the audience at the 75th annual AMVETS National Convention in Louisville, Ky. on Wednesday.

Moreover, 31% think an attempt would put him in a stronger position in 2020, compared with 23% who said it would weaken him.

There was an additional note of caution for House Democrats who are considering impeachment: Some 51% said it would be a bad idea to move forward, while 34% said a failed attempt would put them in a weaker position to retain control of the chamber.

None of this means the president is receiving high marks. More than half of Americans do not approve of his job performance, about as many as in previous surveys, and 57% of registered voters say “it is time to have someone new in the Oval Office.”

Mid-year review

President Donald Trump received an August performance review in the form of a new Associated Press poll, and it’s not good: Just 36% of Americans approve of the way he’s doing his job.

It’s the third-lowest score Trump has gotten in the 17 times the AP-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll has rated his performance. Unlike previous presidents, Trump’s numbers are remarkably consistent: His job approval number in the AP poll has never been higher than 42% or lower than 34%.

The survey is consistent with other public polling that shows Trump’s approval ratings in decline 15 months before his re-election bid. A CNN poll this week had his approval rating at 41%, down from 45% in June. Even Rasmussen Reports – the pollster Trump most likes to cite – had his approval rating at 46%, down from 51% in June.

Trump’s numbers are dragged down by low approval on a number of contentious issues: Immigration, 38%; health care, 37%; foreign policy, 36% and guns, 36%. One bright spot for the White House is the economy. But even there, only 46% approve of his job performance and 51% disapprove.

Republicans and Democrats are predictably polarized, with 79% and 5% approval respectively. But independents seem to be siding more with Democrats at 31%. – Gregory Korte

Debate deadline

It may be now or never for Democratic candidates who so far haven’t caught on with primary voters and pollsters: They’ve got just one week left to make the cut for the third debate.

Of the more than 20 candidates in the battle for the nomination, 10 have qualified to participate in the forum, scheduled to take place Sept. 12 and 13. But if no others meet the requirements by Aug. 28, the event in Houston will be compressed to one night, according to ABC News, the host.

If more than 10 candidates end up qualifying, the network will randomly assign the participants to one of the two nights. They will have one minute and 15 seconds to answer questions, and 45 seconds for rebuttals.

To qualify, candidates must have received donations from at least 130,000 unique donors and poll above 2% in at least four national polls. Pending verification by the Democratic National Committee, these contenders have qualified so far: Joe Biden, Cory Booker, Pete Buttigieg, Julian Castro, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, Beto O’Rourke, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and Andrew Yang.

The debate will be held at Texas Southern University and moderated by ABC anchors George Stephanopoulos and David Muir, ABC News correspondent Linsey Davis and Univision anchor Jorge Ramos.

A contender who had not met the polling threshold, Washington State Governor Jay Inslee, announced on Wednesday night that he was dropping out of the race. Inslee became the third Democratic presidential candidate to withdraw from the contest for the 2020 nomination, following former Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper and Representative Eric Swalwell of California. – Misyrlena Egkolfopoulou