Maybe The Dems Are Right About Censure After All…

4 comments March 16th, 2006at 06:40pm Posted by Eli

As I understand it, the Democrats have been reluctant to embrace Russ Feingold’s motion to censure the President because they’re worried that they might alienate the Vast Undecided Swing-Voter Middle. Personally, I thought this was weak and stupid, but Mr. Atta J. Turk posted a link to a very intriguing American Research Group poll, and now I have seen the light! Hallelujah!

Do you favor or oppose the United States Senate passing a resolution censuring President George W. Bush for authorizing wiretaps of Americans within the United States without obtaining court orders?
3/15/06 Favor Oppose Undecided
All Adults 46% 44% 10%
Voters 48% 43% 9%
Republicans (33%) 29% 57% 14%
Democrats (37%) 70% 26% 4%
Independents (30%) 42% 47% 11%
Do you favor or oppose the United States House of Representatives voting to impeach President George W. Bush?
3/15/06 Favor Oppose Undecided
All Adults 42% 49% 9%
Voters 43% 50% 7%
Republicans (33%) 18% 80% 2%
Democrats (37%) 61% 30% 9%
Independents (30%) 47% 40% 13%

So, if we assume that the Independents are a reasonable proxy for undecided swing voters, we can plainly see that a clear plurality oppose censuring the President for illegal wireless wiretapping, and would instead prefer to see him impeached.

Okay, Dems, your lord and master, The Almighty Middle has spoken. Hop to it.

UPDATE: I’ve been wracking my brain trying to figure out why there’s more support for censure than impeachment among Democrats, but the reverse for Independents, and here’s what I’ve come up with:

The Democrats (myself included, to be honest) are wary of impeachment because of the potential for blowback, as happened with Clinton. My theory is that the Independents don’t care about that because it’s not their party. They want to see Bush nailed to the wall, not just reprimanded.

Entry Filed under: Bush,Democrats,Impeachment,Politics,Polls,Wankers


  • 1. cabearie  |  March 16th, 2006 at 8:02 pm

    Yanno, you may just be right.

    It’s also possible that votes in both Houses (I believe Conyers has a call for investigation into impeachment) in which the Democrats almost unanimously vote in favor of censure and impeachment would send the Republicans scurrying for a change.

    Still, I hadn’t seen those numbers and your analysis is pretty good.


  • 2. flory  |  March 17th, 2006 at 12:10 am

    Wow. That’s an amazing statistic.

    Forget the sleep deprivation, I wonder if this is what has the White House all atwitter?

  • 3. Spear and Magic  |  March 17th, 2006 at 12:08 pm

    Here’s another potential explanation for the discrepancy: Perhaps a high percentage of independents do not understand the relative gravity of censure and impeachment.

    I can say that many college students in these post-Clinton days don’t think that “impeachment” is that big of a deal: it’s just a way Congress has of expressing its disapproval. You get impeached, then you go on about your business.

    “Censure,” on the other hand, sounds more serious to the unschooled ear. Clinton didn’t get censured. In fact, as everyone’s no doubt been hearing repeatedly, “No president has been censured since Andrew Jackson.” And that was, like, a hundred years ago!

    Also, “censure” sounds kinda like “censor,” and nobody likes censorship. And if Bush couldn’t talk publicly anymore, we wouldn’t have all of those funny clips on “The Daily Show.”

  • 4. Multi Medium » The &hellip  |  July 3rd, 2007 at 10:43 pm

    […] is nearly as much of a reach as the Democrats seem to think it is.  F’rinstance, last March an ARG poll indicated that 42% of the American people were in favor of impeachment, including 47% of […]

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