Poll: Trump indictment would help, not hurt, 2024 prospects

March 26, 2023

Though most political hopefuls would assume that a criminal indictment would sink any chances they may have had to win high office, President Donald Trump sees things differently, and, according to recent polling, his primary assumption that his fortunes may actually rise if Manhattan D.A. Alvin Bragg brings charges against him is indeed correct, as Newsmax reports.

The good news for Trump came in a survey released Friday by the Trafalgar Group that was conducted between March 20 and 22 and included 1,081 likely general election voters.

Minimal impact

According to the Trafalgar Group poll, 36.8% of respondents indicated their belief that an indictment of Trump by Bragg would ultimately boost the former president's 2024 campaign.

An additional 37.5% said that criminal charges stemming from the Stormy Daniels hush money matter would have no material impact on on Trump's election chances.

Only 25.7% of poll participants said that criminal charges out of the Manhattan D.A.'s office would damage Trump's campaign.

Taken together, that means that three-quarters of the electorate do not anticipate any material harm to result from a Bragg indictment of Trump, should one occur.

Flawed tactic

According to Mark Meckler, president of Convention of States Action, the reasoning behind those poll results is easy to understand.

“It's obvious to the majority of Americans that former President Trump is being hounded by a politically motivated witch hunt designed to discredit him in order to render him a permanent pariah in American politics,” Meckler declared.

“This tactic has never worked, and these early numbers already reveal it's going to backfire. Voters either think his indictment and arrest will either have absolutely no impact on his 2024 bid, or that it will even boost his campaign,” he added.

A D.C.-based political operative who spoke to NBC News suggested, however, that while Trump could reap benefits from an indictment during the primary season, they could be short-lived, noting that while a criminal charge from Bragg “energizes the base even more,” and that “absolutely helps President Trump going into a primary,” it remained unclear “what it does in a general [election].”

Transparently political

Perhaps the Trafalgar Group's results can be explained in part by the data gleaned from a recent Reuters/Ipsos poll, which was a variation on a closely related theme.

As The Hill reported, a majority of respondents in that survey agreed with the notion that any indictment coming out of Bragg's office against Trump would be “politically motivated.”

Notably, eight out of every ten Republican participants said that such criminal charges would be the product of political animus, while just 32% of Democrats concurred.

Regardless of their personal views of Trump, it appears that a large segment of the American electorate can see precisely what is going on in New York and agrees with former federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy, who declared that Bragg is engaged in “bare-naked politics” and “invidious selective prosecution” – approaches that substantial numbers of voters will refuse to let cloud their decisions at the ballot box.

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