/National Security: Poll: Most Americans expect Trump will get fair trial but think aides should testify
National Security: Poll: Most Americans expect Trump will get fair trial but think aides should testify

National Security: Poll: Most Americans expect Trump will get fair trial but think aides should testify

National Security:

, USA TODAY
Published 4: 57 p.m. ET Dec. 17, 2019 | Updated 11: 21 a.m. ET Dec. 18, 2019

CLOSENational Security:

As the House of Representatives prepares to vote on two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump, the majority of Americans think that the president will face a fair trial in the Senate, but that top aides who have not cooperated with House impeachment investigators should be allowed to testify.

A poll released Tuesday by ABC News and The Washington Post found that about 7 in 10 Americans think the administration officials should be able to testify. In an example of bipartisan agreement, 79% of Democrats, 64% of Republicans and 72% of independents agree that Trump should allow them to appear in a Senate trial in the likely event that the House votes to impeach him.

The president is accused of pressuring Ukraine to open investigations that would benefit his 2020 election campaign. The House is expected to vote on abuse of power and obstruction of Congress articles this week after they were passed by the Judiciary Committee Friday. 

Sixty-two percent of survey respondents expect Trump to face a fair Senate trial, with roughly equal agreement among parties, and 55% of respondents said Trump was treated fairly in the House impeachment inquiry process, with responses tending toward party lines.

The ABC News/Washington Post survey was conducted Dec. 10-15 and included 1,003 respondents. Its margin of error is 3.5 points.

If the articles of impeachment pass the Democrat-majority House as expected, the Republican-led Senate will conduct a trial and decide whether to convict and remove Trump from office.

USA TODAY poll: Narrow majority opposes removing Trump from office if he is impeached

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., on Tuesday rejected Democrats’ proposal for four key witnesses to testify before the Senate: Mick Mulvaney, acting White House chief of staff; John Bolton, former national security adviser; Robert Blair, senior adviser to the acting White House chief of staff; and Michael Duffey, associate director for national security, Office of Management and Budget.

The four are believed to have information about nearly $400 million in military aid that was withheld and a key White House meeting with the Ukraine leader that was allegedly used as leverage for the investigations Trump wanted.

But Senate Republicans said they may not want witnesses for the trial for fear of lengthening the process, even though Trump has called for Joe Biden and the anonymous whistleblower who filed the complaint that sparked impeachment to testify. 

More: Democrats suggest Mike Pence may be ‘misleading’ Congress about his call with Ukraine

Recent polling has shown Americans to be roughly evenly split on their opinions on impeachment. The survey also found that there is a 49%-46% split on whether Trump should be impeached and removed from office, with a slim majority in favor. 

A recent USA TODAY/Suffolk University poll found that a narrow majority opposes a Senate vote to convict and remove Trump if he is impeached by 51%-45%. This shows a change from a USA TODAY/Suffolk poll in October, when Americans were split 47%-46%.

Contributing: Bart Jansen, USA TODAY

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