NEW YORK — Democrats who bought a rickety impeachment inquiry from Nancy Pelosi and Adam Schiff should demand their money back.
Two weeks of “bombshell” impeachment hearings went “poof” as witness after witness failed to connect President Donald J. Trump to treason, bribery, or any other high crime or misdemeanor. Appearing before Schiff’s House Intelligence Committee, several witnesses presumed, assumed, or imagined that military aid to Ukraine was tied to Ukraine’s probing Hunter and Joe Biden. However, when questioned, no one — not even the Democrats’ strongest witness, Ambassador Gordon Sondland — ever heard Trump establish any such quid pro quo. Conversely, multiple witnesses testified under oath that Hunter Biden’s reported $83,333-per-month payment to serve on the board of Burisma, a Ukrainian natural-gas company, while his father handled U.S.-Ukrainian policy, created at least the appearance of a conflict of interest.
As Democrats served fizzle rather than sizzle, viewers switched channels, and enthusiasm for impeachment faded in survey after survey.
• Real Clear Politics’ average of multiple polls on November 10 — two days before Schiff’s hearings began — found that 51 percent of Americans supported impeachment while 42 percent were opposed. A majority of Americans wanted impeachment, by a 9 percent margin.
After 11 days of rancorous testimony and cross-examination, the tide shifted.
RCP’s average on November 21 showed that support for impeachment had fallen to 48 percent, no longer a majority, while opposition grew to 45 percent. The clamor for impeachment had shrunk to a 3 percent edge.
• As The Hill reported, FiveThirtyEight’s national-poll average found the pro-impeachment view shriveling from 50.3 percent in mid-October to 46.3 percent today. Simultaneously, opposition has climbed from 43.8 percent to 45.6 percent.
• Emerson University tracked support for impeachment sagging from 48 percent in October to 43 percent last week. Opposition, meanwhile, grew from 44 percent to 45 percent.
Emerson unveiled really bad news for impeachment-crazy Democrats: Among independent voters, support for impeachment has collapsed, from 48 percent in October to 34 percent today, as opposition soared from 35 percent to 49 percent. Independents have drowned impeachment 14 points underwater.
• Wisconsinites have two words for Washington Democrats, and they’re not “Happy Thanksgiving.” Between October and today, support for impeachment has sunk, from 44 percent to 40 percent, while opposition has risen, from 51 percent to 53 percent. Impeachment has become a 13-point loser in a key swing state that Democrats will need if they want to capture the White House.
One clear-eyed Democrat lamented to The Hill: “After three years, the country was sick of hearing about Russia, and now the average American either doesn’t understand or doesn’t care about the case we’re making on Ukraine.”
Americans should explain all of this to their House members during their 11-day Thanksgiving break.
Tell your congressman to hop off the impeachment express and return to legislating, starting with passage of the U.S./Mexico/Canada free-trade agreement.
The 31 Democrats in districts that President Trump won in 2016 should hear from their constituents, across parties, who are disgusted by this wasteful, pointless, and destructive search for a non-existent crime. If 17 of these Trump-district congressmen abandon this nonsense, the Pelosi-Schiff Impeachment Express will jump the tracks.
The Capitol Switchboard is 202-225-3121. Tell your congressman: “Enough is enough. Stop impeachment now!”
Deroy Murdock is a Manhattan-based Fox News Contributor, a contributing editor with National Review Online, and a senior fellow with the London Center for Policy Research.