Nearly half of voters believe it was a wrong move by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) to hold hostage the two partisan articles of impeachment approved solely by House Democrats, a Quinnipiac University poll released Tuesday shows.
More voters are against Pelosi holding on to the articles than in favor (44 percent).
The pollster revealed:
[V]oters disapprove of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s decision to hold the articles of impeachment until she knew more about how the Senate would conduct the trial, as 44 percent approve and 48 percent disapprove.
Unsurprisingly, more Republicans (86 percent) disapprove of Pelosi holding on to the papers than Democrats (16 percent). Conversely, more Democrats (79 percent) backed Pelosi’s decision that Republicans (nine percent).
The Quinnipiac poll came on the same day the Speaker finally surrendered, saying that the House would vote Wednesday to send the two partisan articles of impeachment against Trump — abuse of power and obstruction of Congress — to the Senate.
On Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) revealed that “in all likelihood” the upper chamber’s impeachment trial will begin next Tuesday.
According to the poll, there was a slim split among Independents when it comes to Pelosi holding on to the articles — 47 percent approve of speaker’s decision while 46 percent do not. Among those who support Pelosi’s move, the majority (53 percent) were between the ages of 18 and 34.
Even members of her own party, senators, also urged Pelosi to hand over the articles so that the impeachment trial could proceed. Furthermore, at least one GOP senator, Lindsey Graham from South Carolina, threatened to change the rules to allow the Senate to proceed with the Democrats’ impeachment trial against Donald Trump.
Graham on Pelosi: "If by the end of the week she has not transmitted the articles I hope we will change the rules so we can start the trial without her.” Takes 51 yeas to alter impeachment rules. But 60 or 67 votes (depending on how it's handled) to end a filibuster on that score
— Chad Pergram (@ChadPergram) January 8, 2020
Moreover, on January 7, McConnell announced they had the vote of all Republicans in the GOP-controlled Senate to approve an impeachment procedure that would allow the chamber to move forward with a trial framework while ignoring Democrat leaders’ requests. He did acknowledge that Pelosi would still need to send the articles to the Senate.
Late last week, McConnell joined 12 other Republicans as co-sponsor of a resolution introduced last Monday by Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) to dismiss the articles of impeachment approved by the Democrats last month.
Historically, the House hands over the articles of impeachment to the Senate, where a trial on the charges against the president takes place.
Pelosi’s decision not to hand over the articles appeared to be an effort to exert, at the very least, some influence over the impeachment process in the Senate, where she has no power. McConnell, however, made it clear that there would be “no haggling” with Pelosi on how he will conduct the impeachment trial on his side of the U.S. Capitol.
By refusing to transmit the articles, Democrats undermined their argument that this impeachment was of the utmost urgency and necessary to save Democracy and the Constitution.