Billionaire and Democrat Tom Steyer is spending his own money on a push to get other Democrats on board with impeaching Donald Trump. But as Yahoo News reports, his crusade is failing to find resonance, both with other Democrats or with regular Americans.
The “Need To Impeach” movement began in October 2017, with a website and multiple YouTube videos, and continues with TV spots and town halls. And Steyer is spending $40 million of his own money towards that goal.
Democrats, however, are apparently not on board.
The problem, for Steyer anyway, is that other Democrats are focused on issues of more relevant, and immediate, concern to average Americans. Namely, their wallets.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who has given Steyer an audience but has not heeded his calls to push for impeachment, says that the Democrats need to focus on one thing and one thing only: helping ordinary Americans.
“What we’re talking about is how we strengthen the financial stability of America’s working families. That is what we are focused on.”
Another problem for Democrats who favor impeachment is the fact that the entire process is seen as a gift to some Republicans. By portraying their political opponents as trying to “undo” the 2016 election, Republicans can tap into the anger, among many conservative Americans, that propelled Trump into the White House in the first place. Impeaching Trump, or even focusing on impeaching Trump, would allow Republicans to say that Democrats have nothing to offer beyond impeachment.
Mr President, my wife and I truly love you and believe in you. I’m catching a lot of hateful grief over my tattoo pic.twitter.com/sKLHgNcV5p
— Robert kaiser (@Robertk54756582) April 21, 2018
Another issue is that impeachment puts the removal of Trump in the hands of Washington lawmakers, and not in the hands of voters. It’s more of a philosophical difference rather than a practical one, but it’s been mentioned more than once – most recently by James Comey, who told ABC News‘ George Stephanopoulos that Trump should be removed from office, but by Americans at the ballot box in 2020.
In fact, it seems that regular Americans generally don’t see impeachment as a top priority. According to a Marist poll conducted for NPR and PBS, 47 percent of voters who responded said they would definitely vote against a candidate who wanted to impeach Trump, while 42 percent said that a candidate who promised to impeach Trump would get their vote.
That’s not to say that impeachment is completely off the table. Democrats and Republicans alike have warned that if Trump fires either Robert Mueller or Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein – as he’s hinted at possibly doing – then all bets are off.