He lied about the election being fixed. He incited an attack that left five dead at the U.S Capitol. He got impeached. Twice. But the vast majority of Republicans still have his back — and views — by big majorities.
Why it matters: Anyone who thinks Trump is a politically dead man walking appears pointedly dead wrong.
Just look at the numbers:
- Two-thirds of House Republicans voted to decertify the election results — in the hours after an insurrection.
- 93% of House Republicans voted against impeachment yesterday.
In an Axios-Ipsos poll taken Tuesday and yesterday:
- 64% of Republicans said they support Trump's recent behavior.
- 57% of Republicans said Trump should be the 2024 GOP candidate.
- Only 17% think he should be removed from office.
House and Senate Republicans tell me they strongly believe Trump will remain a force in the party's 2022 and 2024 races — even if he were to be convicted in the forthcoming Senate trial, and barred from holding federal office himself.
- One reason he may escape conviction is that some top Republicans believe that would make him a martyr and actually empower him. They'd rather let him fade away.
- Fox News' Tucker Carlson said last night: "By impeaching the president during his final week in office, Congress will not succeed in discrediting Trump among Republican voters. In fact, it will enhance Donald Trump among Republican voters. Obviously!"
Between the lines: A majority of Republicans in the poll — 56% — consider themselves traditional Republicans; 36% call themselves Trump Republicans.
- That's a formidable base for Trump, who also controls the $150 million+ he has raised for his super PAC since the election.