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Tuesday, January 17, 2006
Impeachment Watch V

David Corn (of all people) writes that impeachment would be an exercise in futility.

Still, I don't see a public impeachment campaign that targets this Republican-controlled Congress as the best use of political time, energy and money.

Meanwhile a lot of particularly inattentive bloggers are claiming that a recent Zogby Poll shows 52% of Americans in support of impeachment. But if you read the poll question carefully, the 52% seems a little loose:

"If President Bush wiretapped American citizens without the approval of a judge, do you agree or disagree that Congress should consider holding him accountable through impeachment."

Note particularly that the question mentions only American citizens. If the question read, "American citizens with connections to Al Qaeda", how many would agree? And the word "consider" is clearly intended to boost the number of yes responses; the question should have been worded " you agree or disagree that he should be impeached".

Also check the demographics:

Responses also varied by age, sex, race, and religion. 74% of those 18-29 favored impeachment, 47% of those 31-49, 49% of those 50-64, and 40% of those over 65.

So the majority solely arises from the 18-29 cohort, which of course is the least likely to vote and the least sophisticated politically.

Lots of woofing about how "only" 38% of Americans agreed with impeaching Clinton back in August and September of 1998; forgotten is the fact that when the Lewinsky story first broke, a solid majority favored impeachment if Clinton were found guilty of lying under oath.
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