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Think impeachment has been a self-defeating crusade for Democrats? Think again

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14.01.2020

[OPINION] DES MOINES, Iowa — The recently unveiled Des Moines Register/CNN/Mediacom Iowa Poll is considered the gold standard for deciphering the opening-gun Feb. 3 Democratic caucuses. But a polling question asked of a sample of the entire Iowa electorate may be more important for understanding the upcoming impeachment trial.

The question never mentioned the words “Donald Trump.” Instead, it asked registered Iowa voters, “Do you think it is OK or not OK for a U.S. presidential candidate to try to gain political advantage over an election rival by seeking help from foreign countries?”

At a time of intense partisan divisions over everything, it is difficult to locate fleeting examples of consensus. Even asking about the weather (traditionally considered the safest topic in polite conversation) now is likely to provoke a bitter fight over global warming.

But the Iowa Poll answers on digging for political dirt with the help of foreign countries were unequivocal. By a lopsided 7-to-1 margin, Iowa voters said that it was wrong. Even 59 percent of Republicans and 56 percent of Trump voters viewed such behavior as morally suspect.

Remember that Iowa is not one of those coastal states where elite voters sip tea with raised pinkies and ridicule Trump. Disproportionately white and hemorrhaging college graduates in quest of better jobs, Iowa went for Trump in 2016 by a 10-point margin. This was an epic turnabout in a state that twice backed both Barack Obama and Bill........

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