A new poll released on Tuesday by Quinnipiac University finds that almost two-thirds of American voters believe that Donald Trump committed crimes before taking office. In other words, 64 percent of people who may vote in the 2020 presidential election say that the incumbent running for a second term is a criminal.
The country is not as sure that Trump has continued his alleged crime spree while in office. While 45 percent say that he has committed crimes since his January 20, 2017 inauguration, a nearly equal number — 43 percent — say that he has not, according to the Quinnipiac poll.
“The answers to two survey questions deliver a double-barreled gut punch to the honesty question,” said Quinnipiac assistant director Tim Malloy in a statement released along with the Tuesday poll results.
“When two-thirds of voters think you have committed a crime in your past life, and almost half of voters say it’s a tossup over whether you committed a crime while in the Oval Office, confidence in your overall integrity is very shaky.”
Despite their belief in Trump’s criminality, most Americans do not want to see Trump impeached, according to the poll, with 59 percent saying that Congress should not begin the impeachment process, with only 35 percent saying that the has come for impeachment to get underway.
The poll also contained another stunning rebuke of Trump’s honesty. Even though Trump’s former personal lawyer and “fixer” Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to lying to Congress, as The Washington Post reported, and in May is scheduled to start a three-year prison sentence for those and other crimes, Americans find Cohen to be more trustworthy than his former boss, Trump.
According to the poll, as reported by CNBC, a full 50 percent of American voters said that following Cohen’s blockbuster Congressional testimony last week, they took his word over Trump’s. But only 35 percent of voters in the poll said that they believed Trump’s word over Cohen’s.
Americans found Cohen significantly more believable than Trump even after Trump took to Twitter to brand Cohen a liar — in eight separate tweets between February 27 and March 2. Cohen’s public testimony before the House Oversight Committee took place on February 27.
Voters in the Quinnipiac poll gave Trump a dismal 38 percent job approval rating, which is slightly lower than Trump’s rating in the average of all polls compiled by FiveThirtyEight.com. According to the latest average, Trump’s approval stands at 41.5 percent — still lower than all but two of 12 previous presidents after 775 days in office.
Only Presidents Ronald Reagan at 39.9 percent in March of 1983, and Jimmy Carter — 38.4 percent on the same date in 1979 — endured lower approval ratings than Trump. His immediate predecessor, President Barack Obama, enjoyed a 47.5 percent approval rating, six whole points higher than Trump’s, after 775 days in the Oval Office, per FiveThirtyEight.