• Polling

A Majority of Americans Support Criminally Indicting Trump

Friday, March 31, 2023 By Bryan Bennett
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Welcome to NAVIGATOR – a project designed to better understand the American public’s views on issues of the day and help advocates, elected officials, and other interested parties understand the language, imagery, and messaging needed to make and win key policy arguments.
Key takeaways
  • Two in three are hearing about a potential indictment of Donald Trump as nearly three in five think he has committed a crime.
  • Out of a range of actions for which Trump is being investigated or has been investigated, at least half call each a crime, and a majority support an indictment over the alleged hush money payments to Stormy Daniels.
  • The most effective messaging about a potential indictment emphasizes that no one should be above the law and that if prosecutors have evidence Trump has committed a crime, they should follow the facts.

Three in Five Say Trump Has Committed a Crime

Majorities of Democrats (87% yes) and independents (53%), along with majorities of every racial group including white Americans (53%), say Trump has committed a crime. • More than six in ten Republicans (63%) disagree, though about one in four (27%) say he has committed a crime.

Two in Three Report Hearing About the Potential Criminal Indictment of Trump, and Half Broadly Support It

Democrats (71% “a lot”/”some”) and Republicans (66%) are hearing more about the potential criminal indictment than independents (48%).

  • A majority of Democrats (83%) and a plurality of independents (40%) support an indictment, along with one in five Republicans (18%).

Support For a Trump Indictment Grows to Three in Five On Grounds of Illegally Using Campaign Funds

A majority of Democrats (87% support) and just over half of independents (51%) support a criminal indictment of Trump for allegedly paying hush money to Stormy Daniels and then lying about it.

  • One in four Republicans (25%) also support indicting the former president.

Seven in Ten Americans Describe a Range of Trump’s Alleged Actions as Criminal or Wrong

Roughly four in five Democrats and half of independents say each action was a crime.

  • Independents are most likely to say Trump using campaign funds for personal expenses (52%) and obstructing the counting of electoral votes, defrauding the United States, and conspiring to make false statements (52%) are crimes.

Strongest Messaging on the Indictment Emphasizes That Trump Is Not Above the Law

A message that “no one is above the law, not even a former President” is effective against a message that “this potential indictment of Trump is just another politically motivated witch hunt” (net +22 more convincing); a message that “if prosecutors have evidence Trump has committed a crime, they should follow the facts to get to the truth” and he “should face a jury of his peers just like anyone else would” is also compelling (net +16 convincing).

Half of Americans Have Heard of Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg: Views Are Split by Party and Media Consumption

A plurality of Democrats (41%) hold favorable views of Bragg, while a plurality of Republicans (42%) view him unfavorably. • Media consumption among Republicans drives negative views: a majority of Fox News-watching Republicans (56%) view Bragg unfavorably, compared to just three in ten (29%) non-Fox Republicans.

Bringing Down Prescription Costs, Closing Tax Loopholes, Taxing the Rich Most Popular Medicare Solvency Solutions

Allowing Medicare to negotiate lower prescription drug prices (net +75 support), closing tax loopholes (net +60), and raising taxes on corporations and those who make over $400,000 a year to extend the longevity of Medicare (net +54) are the most popular reforms tested.

  • Seniors are even more supportive of these potential reforms, while more than nine in ten oppose cuts to Medicare benefits.


About The Study

Global Strategy Group conducted public opinion surveys among a sample of 1,000 registered voters from March 23-March 27, 2023. 100 additional interviews were conducted among Hispanic voters. 80 additional interviews were conducted among Asian American and Pacific Islander voters. 100 additional interviews were conducted among African American voters. 102 additional interviews were conducted among independent voters

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About Navigator

In a world where the news cycle is the length of a tweet, our leaders often lack the real-time public-sentiment analysis to shape the best approaches to talking about the issues that matter the most. Navigator is designed to act as a consistent, flexible, responsive tool to inform policy debates by conducting research and reliable guidance to inform allies, elected leaders, and the press. Navigator is a project led by pollsters from Global Strategy Group and GBAO along with an advisory committee, including: Andrea Purse, progressive strategist; Arkadi Gerney, The Hub Project; Joel Payne, The Hub Project; Christina Reynolds, EMILY’s List; Delvone Michael, Working Families; Felicia Wong, Roosevelt Institute; Mike Podhorzer, AFL-CIO; Jesse Ferguson, progressive strategist; Navin Nayak, Center for American Progress Action Fund; Stephanie Valencia, EquisLabs; and Melanie Newman, Planned Parenthood Action Fund.

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