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Historian Predicts Trump's Support Will Collapse Once He's Impeached [Edited]

2 min read

Sometimes I think Political Wire has a weird sense of humor. They posted this story on their front page:

Historian Predicts Trump’s Approval Will Collapse

right above this one:

Most Republicans Think Trump Better Than Lincoln

The gist of the first story is this tweet from New Day:

CNN presidential historian Douglas Brinkley on a recent poll showing 50% of Americans support impeaching and removing Trump from office:

After Congress votes, “you're going to see that movement grow even more… He's a base politician. He doesn't know how to turn this around.”

(The other story was reported earlier by Kossack News Corpse.)

Brinkley does have a point: At this point in the impeachment process (the Senate Watergate hearings), only 19% of the country wanted Nixon impeached;  it only reached 50% about a month before he resigned. When the House voted to impeach Clinton, he had a 73% approval rating. Meanwhile, back in March, 36% wanted Trump impeached and removed, and that number has climbed steadily since then. It hasn’t risen since Schiff’s hearings ended (for now), but it hasn’t slipped any either; in fact, it looks like has it never dropped. And Trump’s approval rating has never broken 50%. At the moment, it’s 41.7% and disapproval is 53.5%.

So Brinkley could have a point. On the other hand, the country is a lot more polarized than it was under Nixon and even under Clinton, and many of those who want Trump removed are concentrated in states that would never vote for him anyway. The key is whether the rural states who control too much of the Senate can be turned against him.

[Edit] As Denver11 points out below, the comparison to Nixon wasn’t accurate. (It was the only marked point on the CNN graph, so I used it.) I didn’t locate an exact comparison, but in February 1974, when the House voted to authorize Judiciary to begin an impeachment inquiry, 38% were in favor of impeachment. That’s just impeachment, not removal.

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