Even as the Trump impeachment trial plays out, Americans still narrowly oppose removing President Donald Trump from office, the latest IBD/TIPP Poll finds. Meanwhile, despite the impeachment, Trump's job approval rating showed further improvement, though it remained under water.
Separately, head-to-head matchups against potential Democratic 2020 election rivals show President Trump has essentially erased Joe Biden's lead.
Trump Impeachment Opposed By Slim Majority
As the Senate trial nears an end, Americans now oppose Trump impeachment and removal from office, 51%-47%. That's little changed from 50%-47% opposition in the early January IBD/TIPP Poll. December's poll showed that Americans were split over Trump impeachment and removal, 49%-49%. Opinion is still closely divided and falls just outside the margin of error.
The new IBD/TIPP Poll shows independents now oppose Trump's conviction on the House-passed articles of impeachment, 50%-46%. That split narrowed from 51%-44% opposed in January.
Democrats may have hoped that testimony from former National Security Advisor John Bolton might alter public opinion. That testimony hasn't happened yet and may not happen at all.
On Thursday, Sen. Lamar Alexander said he thinks Trump basically did what Democrats charge, withholding military aid as leverage to push Ukraine to announce an investigation into Joe Biden and son Hunter. Still, Alexander said he'd vote against having witnesses at the Trump impeachment trial. Alexander said he wants Americans to decide Trump's fate at the polls in November.
Trump Job Approval Rises
A majority of Americans still disapprove of Trump's job performance, but he's showing progress. February's IBD/TIPP Poll shows that 44% give Trump a positive job approval rating, while 51% give him poor marks. That 7-point differential is a step up from January's 43%-51% split.
Disapproval of Trump's job performance is higher among independents, with 53% giving him poor marks vs. 41% who think he merits a good grade.
A run of good economic news — a China trade deal, historically low unemployment and record stock market highs — has given Trump's job approval rating a lift. Yet the positive 2020 economic outlook has suddenly become less certain as the coronavirus outbreak has turned into a global health emergency.
2020 Election: Joe Biden Vs. President Trump Is Toss-Up
So far, all of the good news for Trump has led him to erase what looked like a deep disadvantage vs. Joe Biden in polling over the summer. Now Biden's lead over Trump has essentially vanished, falling from 13% in August to 5% in December and 2% in early January.
The latest IBD/TIPP Poll shows that Joe Biden and Michael Bloomberg both hold one-point leads over President Trump. Yet that's a virtual tie, well within the margin of error.
Trump leads Bernie Sanders by 2 points, Pete Buttigieg by 3 and Elizabeth Warren by 4.
The IBD/TIPP Poll reflects responses from 908 adults contacted via mobile phones and landlines from Jan. 23-30 and carries a 3.3-point margin of error.
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