July 25th, 2014
06:00 AM ET
2 months ago

CNN/ORC Poll: Majority say no to impeachment and lawsuit

Washington (CNN) – There’s not a lot of public appetite for a Republican push to sue President Barack Obama, or for calls by some conservatives to impeach him, according to a new national survey.

A CNN/ORC International poll released Friday morning also indicates that a small majority of Americans do not believe that Obama has gone too far in expanding the powers of the presidency.

Earlier this month, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the GOP's 2008 vice presidential nominee, called for Obama's impeachment, becoming the latest voice on the right to make the suggestion.

zzzz poll

But according to the poll, only 35% want Obama impeached, with nearly two-thirds saying the President should not be removed from office.

There's an obvious partisan divide, with 57% of Republicans but only 35% of independents and 13% of Democrats backing a move to impeach Obama.

"Anti-impeachment sentiment is roughly where it was for past presidents - 67% opposed Bill Clinton's impeachment in September 1998, and 69% opposed impeaching George W. Bush when a few Democrats began talking about it in 2006," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.

"One reason may be that Americans take impeachment very seriously. Only about one in five say that impeachment is a valid response if Congress is dissatisfied with a president's policies or the way he is handling his job. Nearly eight in 10 say impeachment should be reserved for high crimes and misdemeanors," Holland adds.

Senior Obama adviser on impeachment: 'I would not discount that possibility'

The poll's release came one day after the House Rules Committee approved – along a party line vote – a resolution authorizing Speaker John Boehner's lawsuit against the President. The GOP controlled House is expected approve it next week.

Boehner and House Republicans plan to sue Obama over his health care law. They claim he violated the Constitution by circumventing Congress and changing the law's employer mandate on his own.

By a 57%-41% margin, Americans say House Republicans shouldn't file the suit. As with the question on impeachment, there's a wide partisan divide over the lawsuit.

Boehner: Why we must now sue the President

When it comes to expanding the power of the presidency, has Obama gone too far? Forty-five percent say yes, with three in 10 saying the President's actions have been about right, and 22% saying he hasn't gone far enough.

CNN Poll: Border crisis making major impact on immigration views

CNN Poll: Obama's numbers not great but holding steady

The poll was conducted for CNN by ORC International from July 18-20, with 1,012 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

soundoff (995 Responses)
  1. CR

    Dan Pfeiffer, a leading adviser for Barack Obama, is saying that what the president is planning to do on immigration will make Republicans in Congress unhappy. Very unhappy.

    “The president acting on immigration reform will certainly up the likelihood that they would contemplate impeachment,” the report quoted Pfeiffer saying. He noted it would be “foolish” to overlook the possibility.

    Pfeiffer said he can see Republicans moving toward impeachment, according to the report, “in retaliation for the immigration orders he is expected to unveil by the end of the summer.”

    July 25, 2014 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  2. blurb4591

    A survey "by phone?" We are talking about a home phone which is becoming scarcer than hen's teeth. Only folks too poor to buy a cell phone have home phones anymore. And what demographic are the poor folks? You got it. This survey is so skewed toward Obama that it is meaningless.

    July 25, 2014 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  3. Merle McClung

    No grounds for impeachment - Congress Republicans again ignore the work before them to continue the partisan attacks and fan the fires of extremists.
    The lawsuit is a concern, not because it has any merit, but because it may come before this radically partisan Supreme Court. You know, the one that just ruled a woman's right to choose belongs to everyone but herself!

    July 25, 2014 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  4. Anonymous

    67% opposed Bill Clinton's impeachment in September 1998, and 69% opposed impeaching George W. Bush

    July 25, 2014 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  5. Alex

    CNN will run any article – no matter how asinine.
    and who are these 13% of Democrats that want to impeach Obama?
    I don't believe there's a single Democrat in this country that actually thinks that.
    Republicans don't respect our country or our laws. (Taking away someone's right to vote?)
    They're just a bunch of morally bankrupt selfish morons.

    July 25, 2014 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  6. ray

    how about sending all republicans in a cell with some brothers for a week of fun????????????????/ all these white racists should be in prison

    July 25, 2014 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  7. whatever

    Or they might just think handing the country to crazy uncle Joe would be even worse. Also remember next in line after Joe would be cry baby Boehner. The line of succession jut goes from bad to worse.

    July 25, 2014 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  8. visitor

    So, a bunch of people still think global warming is a hoax, and I suspect those are the same people.

    July 25, 2014 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  9. Chuck Toad

    " .. indicates that a small majority of Americans do not believe that Obama has gone too far ..." What exactly is a "small majority" ?

    July 25, 2014 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  10. moecurlylarry

    35% is the same percent who 'believe' the President was born in Kenya.
    35% believe the President is imperial and marxist at the same time.
    35% don't know who the president is.
    35% think impeachment is stoning using peaches.

    I can go on forever but the only thing this proves is that we badly need education reform in this country.

    July 25, 2014 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  11. Art

    They wanted to impeach George W and Clinton. Nothing new here, let's move along.

    July 25, 2014 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  12. Aw

    This is common sense. Over half of Americans get free government stuff, so yeah they think he is doing fine. Ask people who pay the bill for all these bums and I bet it doubles.

    July 25, 2014 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  13. ahoy polloi

    DK
    Ok, so 35% of the public doesn't understand what is a valid basis for impeachment. They may not like Obama, but it's laughably ignorant to call for impeachment when there are absolutely no grounds to do so.

    July 25, 2014 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |

    "laughably ignorant" is the best description of the mouth-breathing, know-nothing dead-enders on the right/GOP/Tea Party i can think of.

    July 25, 2014 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  14. Bigwilliestyles

    Impeachment.Bah! Get rid of the wrong type of republican fake politician (read: thinks his style of racism is well hidden).

    July 25, 2014 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  15. JK

    So the news is that this is no different than other recent POTUS.

    July 25, 2014 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  16. theeightiesruled1

    The Guy is the most corrupt President in the history of the country, but unfortunately he happens to be half black, and nearly half the public and the mainstream media would never allow it to happen! This whole "presidency" was propped by a media that ignored the man's past and his total lack of experience at running anything in his adult life! Sad Days!

    July 25, 2014 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  17. Andy

    65% say DO NOT impeach Obama

    July 25, 2014 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  18. Frank

    I think if the House starts down that road, he should arrest, W., Cheney, Rice, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz., etc., and ship them down to Gtmo. You won't let it be closed; let's do something useful with it then! I don't know the timing, but maybe after the November election and before the new Congress is seated in January?

    July 25, 2014 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  19. Mr. T. Bag

    –That's not news.
    35% of Americans think Obama is a Soshulist Space Alien.

    July 25, 2014 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  20. amercon

    Unaccompanied children at the border went from 4,000 prior to 2012 to 10,000 in 2012, 21,000 in 2013 and now 39,000 due to a 2012 Obama executive order. Obama is the problem

    July 25, 2014 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  21. Nolita

    So more people think Obama should be impeached than thought that G. W. Bush should be impeached. No surprise.

    July 25, 2014 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  22. 9hydra

    Makes sense. That's the same 35% who think he's the worst president since Nixon. In 2006, 52% of Americans wanted to impeach Bush over the Iraq war lies. In our polarized political environment, aided by 24-7 news media there probably won't be a second term president that 30-40% of the people don't want impeached.

    July 25, 2014 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  23. 9hydra

    Our country is too polarized. 52% wanted to impeach Bush in 2006. 35% want to impeach Obama. Whoever the next president is, people will be calling to impeach him/her halfway through their second term. Welcome to political discourse in modern America.

    July 25, 2014 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  24. Mr. T. Bag

    –and 35% of Americans wanted to impeach him before he was even sworn in as president...

    July 25, 2014 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  25. michael de rigueur

    Sarah Palin called for Obama's "impeachment," lol! She probably just learned the word and wanted to use it in a sentence.

    July 25, 2014 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
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