President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial is now underway in the Senate, and no doubt, Democrats were hoping the televised event would capture widespread attention. But if that’s the case, it looks like the Dems will be walking away disappointed.
The Washington Examiner reports that just 11 million people tuned in between 12:30 p.m. and 5 p.m. Tuesday to watch the start of Trump’s trial in the Senate, nearly three million fewer than watched the first day of proceedings in the House. It looks like Americans are losing interest in Dems’ games — and fast.
Viewership falling fast
The Examiner reported that 13.8 million Americans “watched the first day of the House’s impeachment proceedings against Trump, which led to the two charges, abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, that the president is facing now.” But on Tuesday, just 11 million total tuned in across six television networks.
Fox News claimed the largest share of that viewership, pulling in 2.65 million viewers.
CBS, meanwhile, pulled in 1.94 million viewers, according to the Examiner. MSNBC had 1.9 million, while CNN rounded out the bottom at 1.44 million viewers.
Tuesday’s spectacle stretched long into the night, finally concluding just before 2 a.m. Wednesday, the Examiner noted. Opening arguments began with lengthy speeches from the House’s impeachment managers, led by Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), on Wednesday afternoon, with Dems expected to wrap up their openers Friday.
Afterward, Trump’s legal team will get the chance to present their case before “a 16-hour question-and-answer period for senators,” according to Politico. The Senate will then hold a vote on whether to call additional witnesses to testify or subpoena additional documents.
“All votes on motions in the Senate trial require just a simple majority,” Politico reported. “[T]he final vote on convicting the president and removing him from office needs 67 [senators to pass].”
Polls not moving
But while all that may be going on in Washington over the next several weeks, it doesn’t look like the American public is paying much attention — and public opinion isn’t changing much, either. A recent Gallup poll showed that 51% of Americans remain against removing Trump from office.
Unsurprisingly, that sentiment was strongest among Republicans, 93% of whom don’t want Trump ousted. However, the view was also shared by 46% of independent voters and even 15% of Democrats. And according to Trey Gowdy, a former South Carolina congressman, those numbers probably won’t change much unless new information comes to light.
“What’s required to change people’s minds is new facts,” the Republican told Fox News personality Martha MacCallum this week. “And I’ve heard nothing that Adam [Schiff] didn’t trot out in front of the House before the impeachment vote.
“He couldn’t get a single Republican in the House to vote for impeachment — in fact, he lost Democrats,” Gowdy continued. “So unless you’re going to have new facts, I don’t think people’s positions are going to change.”