By Isabel van Brugen
President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign on Dec. 19 launched the “Democrats for Trump” coalition, on the same day Rep. Jeff Van Drew (R-N.J.), switched from being a Democrat to being a Republican—a move to welcome moderate Democrats disaffected by “coastal elitists and left-wing radicals” it says have hijacked the party.
“The coalition is aimed at disaffected Democrats who will refuse to support witch hunts, sham impeachments, or radical big government socialist policies,” the campaign said.
“From the sham impeachment to the outright embrace of socialism, the Democrat party of today is unrecognizable and leaving moderate Democrats behind,” said campaign manager Brad Parscale.
Parscale invited Democrats “who feel abandoned by the socialist radicalization of their party” to join both the movement and “a President that are putting America first.”
The group “will highlight the many victories President Trump has achieved for all Americans,” according to the campaign.
The coalition was formed in the wake of House Democrats’ impeachment investigation, which culminated in two articles of impeachment being accepted in a strictly partisan vote on Dec. 18. Trump was charged with “high crimes and misdemeanors” by the House on Wednesday. His impeachment is marked as being the most partisan in U.S. history, with all of the Republicans voting no on the resolution. In addition, two Democrats broke ranks to vote no alongside Republicans, while Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) voted “present.”
Voting almost exclusively along party lines, the abuse of power impeachment article was approved 230-197-1, while the Obstruction of Congress article passed 229-198-1, making Trump the third president in U.S. history to be impeached.
Nancy Pelosi, Jerry Nadler and Adam Schiff couldn’t even convince all the Democrats to vote for impeachment, but they did it anyway. They know a totally partisan impeachment does irreparable damage to America, but they don’t care. They don’t put America First!
— Brad Parscale (@parscale) December 19, 2019
Van Drew was one of the two Democrats who broke ranks with their party to vote no on the first article of impeachment, joined by Rep. Jared Golden (D-Maine) who voted no on the second article of impeachment.
According to the campaign, “Democrats for Trump” is for moderate liberals who wish to work alongside Trump-led conservatives on “key issues” such as lowering the costs of prescription drugs, mending America’s infrastructure, and passing strong trade deals.
In a statement from the campaign, Cibola County, New Mexico, sheriff Tony Mace said, “President Trump speaks for a generation of Democrats who feel abandoned by today’s partisan tactics.
“Coastal elitists and left-wing radicals have seized the Democrat Party.”
The campaign added that polling has shown consistently that Americans are rejecting the House Democrat-led impeachment probe against Trump.
The contrast between President @realDonaldTrump and crazed Dems couldn’t be more clear.
President Trump is in Michigan rallying thousands of patriots.
Democrats in D.C. completed their impeachment sham and voted against 63 million Americans.
— Brad Parscale (@parscale)
A Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll released on Thursday showed that less than half of all Americans say Trump should be removed from office following his impeachment by the U.S. House of Representatives, presenting a challenge for Democrats who will seek his ouster in a 2020 Senate trial.
The national online survey was conducted in the hours after the House voted along party lines to charge Trump with abusing his office and obstructing Congress.
When asked about the specific impeachment charges, 53 percent agreed that Trump abused his office and 51 percent agreed that he obstructed Congress.
Some 42 percent of respondents—most of them Democrats—said Congress should carry out its ultimate sanction and remove the president from office, as the Senate has the power to do.
Another 17 percent said Trump should be formally reprimanded with a congressional censure, 29 percent said they want the impeachment charges dismissed, and the rest said they did not have an opinion.
House Dems sitting in @realDonaldTrump won districts know a vote for impeachment is a vote to lose their seats in 2020.
Internal polling shows voters in those districts OPPOSE impeachment by 10 points.
— Brad Parscale (@parscale) December 17, 2019
The public has remained sharply divided on impeaching Trump, who has denounced the impeachment hearings as a witch hunt and an illegal attempt to oust him from office.
Trump faces a Senate trial in 2020, where it will be determined whether to convict and remove him from office, which is seen on both sides of the aisle as extremely unlikely.
A supermajority vote by two-thirds of the Senate (67 votes) is required to convict and remove the president, meaning 20 Republicans would need to get on board. Republicans hold a majority in the Senate and have shown no interest in removing Trump, who wields a 95 percent approval rating among Republican voters.
Reuters contributed to this report.
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