Are the blockbuster revelations from the January 6 Committee hearings cutting through? Changing hearts and minds?
A new CBS News/YouGov poll released today found that, from what they’ve seen so far, half of the country thinks former President Donald Trump tried to stay in power “through illegal means”, and nearly half think he should be charged with crimes as a result.
From what they’ve seen of the hearings so far, half the country thinks Donald Trump planned to remain in office through unconstitutional & illegal activities. Half think that he should, in turn, be charged with crimes. https://t.co/gPT48cT4tq pic.twitter.com/qTRBynUtmb
— CBS News Poll (@CBSNewsPoll) June 26, 2022
Game. Set. Match. Right? Book him! Not so fast. As with all public opinion in the United States, the consensus evaporates as soon as you look at party affiliation. According to the poll, 70 percent of Republicans still say Biden didn’t legitimately win the 2020 election, and that Trump didn’t plan to seize power illegally. Half of Republicans view the insurrection as “patriotic”—a number that has remained relatively unchanged since the attack, according to the pollsters.
And democracy lovers, brace yourselves. There’s another disturbing finding in the poll today: The majority of Americans now think it’s at least “somewhat likely” that election officials will refuse to certify results in the future for political reasons.
The new poll also contained some grim news for President Biden: The lowest ever approval rating of his presidency, at 41 percent.
It has been difficult to gauge the overall impact of the hearings as they happen. Lots of people seem to be paying at least some attention and ratings have been good. But a poll released earlier this week by Quinnipiac showed that the number of Americans who believe that Trump committed a crime in his attempts to steal the 2020 election remained “essentially unchanged” from an April poll asking the same question; 46 percent say he did commit a crime, and 47 percent saying he did not.
Read more detailed results from today’s CBS News poll here.