House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) wondered aloud if Democrats in the House will have enough votes to impeach President Donald Trump after the public impeachment hearings.
McCarthy said, “I wonder if the Democrats will even have the votes to move impeachment now.”
He later said, “I will tell you today, after watching these two weeks of hearings, I don’t know if it’s even going to get to the Senate,” Fox News reported.
The Republican minority leader then added that some polls have shown that support for impeachment has dropped amid the public hearings.
The leader of the impeachment inquiry, House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), “knows the American public knows his lies and he knows he’s losing,” McCarthy claimed. “There’s no way anybody would bang a gavel that hard if they didn’t know they were losing.”
Later in the interview, McCarthy accused Schiff of lying about what he knows about the whistleblower at the center of the inquiry. A whistleblower complaint about a now-declassified July 25 phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky led to the inquiry. Democrats have alleged that Trump withheld security aid to Ukraine in exchange for investigations, which Trump and Ukrainian officials have denied.
Should articles of impeachment pass in the House the Senate is expected to hold a trial.
Trump told news outlets on Friday that he welcomes a trial in the Senate to clear up the allegations. He also said he would like to see Schiff and the whistleblower testify in the Senate, a claim echoed by several of his Republican allies in the Senate.
A recent poll from Emerson College revealed that 45 percent of voters oppose impeaching President Trump against 43 percent who support it. That is a 6-point percentage swing in support from October.
It also showed that a growing number of independents now oppose the impeachment effort than support it. It found 49 percent oppose it compared to 34 percent who support it. In October, 48 percent of independents support it and 39 percent opposed it, according to a prior poll.
The poll also revealed that the economy was the No. 1 issue for Republican and independent voters. Among Democrats, healthcare was the top issue.
Only about 7 percent of voters thought impeachment was the most important issue, the poll found.
Earlier this week, a survey from Marquette University survey of Wisconsin found that 40 percent believe Trump should be impeached and removed while 53 percent oppose it. Only about 36 percent of independents in Wisconsin, a state that Trump won in 2016, support impeachment and removal.
The survey “finds consistent, if sometimes modest, shifts in public opinion away from support of impeachment and toward supporting Trump in next year’s presidential election,” according to Marquette.