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 TIME on politics Congressional Quarterly CNN/AllPolitics CNN/AllPolitics - Storypage, with TIME and Congressional Quarterly

Poll shows most Americans don't want Senate trial of Clinton

WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, January 6) -- On the eve of the Senate impeachment trial of President Clinton, most Americans believe there shouldn't be a trial at all, according to the latest CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll.

If the Senate does go ahead with a trial, 62 percent want it to last just a few days, and 57 percent say that the Senate should not hear testimony from witnesses such as Monica Lewinsky, Vernon Jordan or Betty Currie.

Only a third of Americans support removing Clinton from office, and 85 percent say that it is unlikely that anything revealed in a trial would change their minds about whether he should be removed.

Clinton's approval rating has fallen from 73 percent immediately following his impeachment to 63 percent. But that 73 percent figure was probably artificially high (likely due to a combination of sympathy in the wake of the unpopular impeachment vote and support for the commander-in-chief while the military was engaged in operations in Iraq).

It is important to note that Clinton's approval has been in the mid-60s for months, indicating that the current 63 percent figure is a return to his normal levels rather than a sign that he is losing ground among his base of supporters.

Interviews were conducted with 671 Americans on January 6.

Clinton job approval rating:
Now 63%
December 19-20 73%
December 15-16 63%
Should your senators vote to remove Clinton from office?
Yes 33%
No 63%
How long should trial last?
Few days 62%
Several weeks 24%
Should Senate hear testimony from witnesses?
Yes 40%
No 57%
Should Senate hold preliminary vote?
Yes 42%
No 53%
Senate should...
Hold a trial 42%
Censure but no trial 32%
No censure/no trial 21%
Should Senate hold trial?
Yes 42%
No 53%
How Senate Republicans are handling proceedings
Approve 32%
Disapprove 57%
How Senate Democrats are handling proceedings
Approve 41%
Disapprove 45%
Will Senate trial change your mind?
Likely 11%
Not likely 85%
Should Clinton give State of the Union speech?
Yes 60%
No 36%

Sampling error is plus or minus 4 percentage points


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The art of being Bradley

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On the wrong track

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Mike Luckovich: "There's a whine in the air" (9-22-99) more


Democratic Presidential Primary

GOP Presidential Primary

Third Party Candidates


Wednesday January 6, 1999

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