By Erica Etelson, The Fulcrum
In my one-year retrospective last month on the Supreme Court confirmation hearings, I observed that partisan bias played a huge role in whether one believed nominee Brett Kavanaugh or Christine Blasey Ford. Extreme partisan disparity is evident once again in public opinion polls concerning impeachment.
Eighty-seven percent of Democrats and 23 percent of Republicans approve of Congress launching an impeachment inquiry, according to a September 26-27 YouGov poll commissioned by CBS News. Likewise, when asked whether Trump’s handling of Ukraine is “typical — a thing most presidents do” or “unusual — something few have done,” 71 percent of Republicans but just 15 percent of Democrats say it is typical.
What’s going on here? Do Republicans and Democrats have vastly divergent conceptions of what constitutes proper and improper presidential conduct? Do they have different recollections of the behavior of past presidents? Or are most people basing their opinion on whether or not they want President Trump to serve out his term and reverse engineering their reasoning accordingly? I suspect the latter.