A large majority of registered Republican voters (68%) say a GOP-controlled House should vote to impeach President Joe Biden if the party retakes the majority after the November midterm elections, according to a recent UMass poll.
Democrats twice voting to impeach former President Donald Trump has turned impeachment into a political weapon, according to UMass Amherst pollster Tatishe Nteta.
"The decision to impeach a president was once viewed as a last resort to reign in a president who pushed or broke through the boundaries of our laws, values and ethics," political science professor Nteta said. "Today, impeachment is no longer a final option, but one of many weapons to be used in an era of rampant partisan polarization to gain an upper hand on one's partisan opponents.
"With a number of Republican members of Congress calling to impeach President Biden, the chorus will likely grow louder if and when the Republican Party takes control of the U.S. House in 2022."
Also, 53% of Republicans say Biden will be impeached, while 44% of all respondents believe he will be, and just 34% of all respondents say he should be impeached.
The pollsters project a tight midterm election with the impassioned basis of both major parties.
"Super-majorities of Democrats and Republicans both say they are energized going into the 2022 midterm election season," pollster Jesse Rhodes said. "With partisans of all stripes excited about the election, we could be in for very closely fought campaigns this fall. A lot will hinge on whether and to what extent Democratic and Republican candidates are successful in turning out their voters during the campaign."
Republicans rate themselves an average of 79 on a scale of 1-100 for their level of excitement for the midterms, while Democrats are an average of 73. But Democrats also note Republicans are more excited about the elections (69) than Republicans estimate Democrats are (44), potentially aiding voter turnout, according to the poll.
Independents rate themselves just a 47 on excitement for the midterms.
"In the 2018 midterm, turnout was at its highest level since 1914 with close to 120 million Americans going to the polls," Nteta said. "Our results suggest that the days of low voter turnout in midterm elections may be over with Americans on both sides of the partisan divide expressing excitement to vote in 2022 and expressing their belief that the results of the 2022 midterm will be important for the nation’s future."
The University of Massachusetts Amherst polled 1,000 respondents nationwide was conducted by YouGov May 5-9, and the poll had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.
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