By Chris Kahn
(Reuters) – 57 percent of Americans want Republican President Donald Trump to be removed from office immediately after encouraging a protest this week that led to a deadly riot in the U.S. Capitol, according to a Reuters / Ipsos poll .
Most of them were Democrats, however, with Republicans apparently much more supportive of Trump as he served the final days of his tenure, which ends Jan. 20.
The national public opinion poll, conducted Thursday and Friday, also found that seven out of ten respondents who voted for Trump in November opposed the action by the hardcore supporters who broke into the Capitol when themselves Lawmakers met to confirm the election victory of Democrat Joe Biden.
Nearly 70% of Americans polled said they disapproved of Trump’s actions in the run-up to Wednesday’s attack. At a rally earlier in the day, Trump warned thousands of his supporters to march to the Capitol.
The chaos on Capitol Hill, in which a police officer and four others died, has been widely condemned by both Democrats and Republicans.
House Democrats plan to file misconduct charges on Monday that could lead to Trump being impeached a second time, two sources familiar with the matter said.
“Unless the president leaves office immediately and willingly, Congress will continue our action,” House spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi said in a statement. [L1N2JJ0UU]
The public reaction is divided by political party, as was the case with almost all major issues in the Trump era. While almost everyone condemned the violent confrontation, calls for Trump’s overthrow came mostly from Democrats.
Overall, the majority of Americans who said they wanted Trump to leave office before his term expires comprise about nine in ten Democrats polled, but only two in ten Republicans.
About 30% said the president should be removed under the provisions of the 25th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which allows the vice president and cabinet to remove the president if he is unable to perform his or her official duties.
Another 14% said Congress should indict and remove Trump from office, and 13% said Trump should simply step down.
Trump, who lost the November 3rd election by around seven million votes, urged his supporters to march in Congress on Wednesday and told them at a rally that “you will never retake our country with weakness.”
A small minority of the American public – 12% – said they support the actions of the people who took part in the riots.
79 percent of adults, including two-thirds of Republicans and Trump voters, described the participants as either “criminals” or “fools”. Nine percent saw them as “concerned citizens” and five percent as “patriots”.
The Reuters / Ipsos survey was conducted online in English in the United States. Responses were collected from 1,005 American adults, including 339 who said they voted for Trump. The results have a confidence interval, a measure of accuracy, of 4 percentage points.
Further information on the survey can be found at https://tmsnrt.rs/3pYTiuD
(Reporting by Chris Kahn, editing by Soyoung Kim and Sonya Hepinstall)