The interaction between political judgment and polls – editorials
The mallets have been cleared for what will be one of the ugliest presidential elections in the recent history of the United States (USA). Voting almost exclusively on partisan lines, the Senate refused to defend the political trial of President Donald Trump. Trump will be the first president of the United States to seek reelection despite having gone through a process of political trial. The expected exoneration of the Senate means that the impeachment charge has no constitutional implications, but the original vote of the lower house is still standing. All this had been preceded by Trump, who called for electoral clarification masked as a speech by the State of the Union. The president’s refusal to shake hands with the president of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, and the fact that she broke a copy of her speech before the cameras, told their respective parties that the campaign had begun and that the gloves They were not there.
The impeachment process had no material impact on Trump’s popularity, which continues to be around 42%, or on the support of the Democratic Party itself. But the whole drama underlined the president’s unusual control based on his party, and how this, in turn, means that the Republican establishment cannot turn against him. Less than 10% of Republican voters believed that Trump deserved a political trial. That violated laws and rules worthy of political judgment does not seem to doubt.
However, political judgment is a political action, not legal. Democrats have not escaped empty-handed. His supporters and some independent voters have deepened their enmity with the president, and this will be used to raise funds and mobilize votes. This year’s presidential elections will be notable for the lack of a real midpoint between the two parties, and colored by strong personal opinions about the incumbent. An additional layer is the deep ideological conflict within the Democratic Party. Trump will expect this battle to be as damaging to his opponent as the Democrats expected the accusation to be for him.