53 percent of Democrats say impeaching President Donald Trump should be a “top priority” in the latest Morning Consult-Politico poll, compared with just 28 percent of the nation as a whole who say the same.
Overall, 41 percent reject impeaching Trump, including 11 percent of Democrats say there should be no impeachment.
In short, Democrats have a big problem. A majority of their party has been fed the now-debunked lie that President Donald Trump and his campaign were Russian agents who helped steal the 2016 election, and they want nothing less than Trump forcibly removed from office.
But most of the country is not with them, and a significant portion of their own party are not there.
So, where do Democrats go?
If House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) does not give her party’s political base what they want, they will be angry that their political leaders have sold them a bill of goods. That they’ve been defrauded. This would certainly suppress Democratic turnout in 2020, and might help Trump win reelection.
On the other hand, if Pelosi follows through on impeachment without a credible basis for doing so, it might prove Trump’s contention that it was all a witch hunt to American voters.
With impeachment – which would most certainly fail in the Senate – Democrats would paint themselves into a corner, pursuing a policy only their core base supports. It would also compel Democratic presidential candidates to follow suit in supporting impeachment.
But without building a case for impeachment publicly, Trump could effectively counter that instead of pursuing infrastructure, immigration or anything else, Democrats are still obsessed with overturning the results of the 2016 election.
Again, only 28 percent overall support impeachment, and most of them are Democrats. Republicans don’t want it, and independents reject it, too.
Pelosi has not made the case.
This endangers not just Democratic prospects for the White House, but their prospects in Congress, since the solution to a do-nothing Democratic House might be a Republican majority in the House. At least then Congress was working on tax cuts and fixing Obamacare when Republicans were in charge, voters might reason.
So, Pelosi has a choice to make. She can work with Trump, pass the USMCA, do an infrastructure bill and forget about impeachment, and her party’s political base could implode over the betrayal. After all, if Trump succeeds at legislation, even if it’s good for the country, that would help him get re-elected, which is contrary to the stated goal of Democrats. Their top priority for the country is getting rid of Trump.
Or, she can pursue impeachment, and when her party fails, the country will turn on them because they are pursuing the fantasy that Trump was a Russian agent.
They’re damned if they do, and damned if they don’t.
Either way, they might be helping Trump win reelection. So, with that in mind, why not do something that’s actually good for the country?
Robert Romano is the Vice President of Public Policy at Americans for Limited Government.