Seems to me the nation is as divided as ever right now over the impeachment stuff.

Well, to be fair, that’s probably an overstatement. We were most assuredly more divided in April of 1861.

But we’re pretty darn divided. And I’m convinced nobody is going to change their minds based on the public impeachment hearings going on in the U.S. House of Representatives.

And the hyperbole at these hearings is off the hook.

On Thursday, the No. 2 House Republican, Steve Scalise, brought a poster to the House floor. It said, “37 days of Soviet-Style impeachment proceedings.” It was adorned with a picture of the Kremlin a hammer and sickle superimposed.

Come on, man.

And Democrat Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said, “What is at stake in all of this? It’s nothing less than our democracy.”


All nonsense aside, the big question is whether the House will vote to impeach Republican President Donald Trump, necessitating a trial in the U.S, Senate. Many believe it’s a foregone conclusion, given the majority of Democrats in the House.

I’m not so sure.

So far, there has been virtually no bipartisanship. In fact, the only hint of bipartisanship in this whole mess was when two Democrats jumped ship and sided with Republicans to vote against beginning the impeachment inquiry.

The only Democrat “no” votes were by Reps. Jeff Van Drew, a New Jersey freshman, and veteran Collin Peterson of Minnesota, one of the House’s most conservative Democrats. Both are battling for re-election in Republican-leaning districts.

They were basically trying to save their own electoral hides.

I am always skeptical about such things. Did they really think the impeachment inquiry was a bad idea when they voted no? Or was it a case of them going to their leadership and saying, “Hey, I really want to vote yes, but I’m in a tough re-election spot. Can I vote no? Do we have enough votes without me?”

Truth be told, it’s probably the latter.

Even so, it makes me wonder.

All along, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and other Democrat leaders have been playing the impeachment card pretty close to the vest. They were afraid – and probably still are – that pushing too hard on impeachment would imperil the re-election prospects of more than 30 of their Democrat colleagues.

These are either freshmen lawmakers or lawmakers from districts where Trump won handily in 2016. If enough of them lose, the Democrats could lose control of the House.

The hope of the leadership is that with the public impeachment hearings, voters will turn against Trump and Democrats can still win re-election, even in Trump-leaning districts.

I’m not so sure about that.

It comes back to how divided voters are right now. I really don’t think the public impeachment hearings – no matter how many “bombshells” are brought to light – are going to change many minds.

And current polling shows Trump’s base of voters stands unflinchingly behind him.

On Friday, the Daily Presidential Tracking Poll at Rasmussen Reports showed “50% of Likely U.S. Voters approve of President Trump’s job performance. Forty-nine percent (49%) disapprove.

The latest figures include 37% who Strongly Approve of the job Trump is doing and 42% who Strongly Disapprove. This gives him a Presidential Approval Index rating of -5. The president’s overall approval has been tracking up since Wednesday, the first day of the House impeachment hearings. It was at 46% on Wednesday morning, then rose to 48% yesterday and is now at 50%. Two of the three nights in today’s survey follow the highly-publicized hearings.”

Gallup has stopped doing daily presidential approval rating polls, so Rasmussen is the only one in the game right now. Are they accurate? Who knows? But they were the closest to getting the last presidential election right, showing Hillary Clinton winning by only three percentage points. This was when most polls had her up by double digits and election forecasters put her chance of winning at anywhere from 70% to as high as 99%.

But here’s the thing.

Even if the poll numbers are over baked, are they over baked enough to ensure Democrat victories in Trump-leaning districts? That’s the question those 30 or so lawmakers in tough re-election battles have to ask themselves.

And when they go home, what will they hear from Trump voters at the coffee shop or the grocery store?

So when it comes time to the vote on whether to impeach the president, will these 30 or so Democrats follow their marching orders and vote yes, knowing full well there is a zero chance of the Senate reaching the two-thirds majority vote needed to remove Trump from office? Or will they vote no as a means of electoral survival?

I don’t have the answer. But I can’t wait to find out.