Fox News is part of the reason many Republicans don't support impeaching Trump, a new poll reveals
- Fox News is a major reason that Republicans won't support impeachment, according to a new poll conducted by the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI).
- According to the poll, 55% of Republicans who say Fox News is their primary source of news say there is nothing Trump could do to lose their approval.
- Nearly all Republicans who say Fox News is their primary source of news also oppose Trump being impeached and removed from office.
- According to The Washington Post, Fox News' coverage of Trump has been broadly friendly, particularly on issues surrounding impeachment, and the Trump administration's ties to the outlet run deep.
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According to the 2019 American Values Survey conducted by the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI), the views of Republicans who say Fox News is their primary source of news are particularly striking and may indicate how the news outlet's framing of political events has largely molded viewer opinions of President Donald Trump.
According to the poll, 55% of Republicans who say Fox News is their primary source of news say there is nothing Trump could do to lose their approval. This contrasts with only 29% Republicans who do not cite Fox News as their primary source of news who say the same.
Education also appears to shape Trump's favorability among Republicans. Forty-five percent of Republicans who do not have a college degree say there is virtually nothing Trump could do to lose their support, while 35% of college-educated Republicans concur on the issue.
Overall, 62% of Americans surveyed said Trump's personal conduct and behavior makes them less likely to support him, compared to 30% of voters who say his conduct makes no difference to them. Eight percent say his conduct makes them more likely to support him.
Nearly all Republicans who watch Fox News oppose Trump's impeachment
Fox News is also shaping Republicans' views on the impeachment inquiry into Trump's activities, sparked by a whistleblower complaint filed in August that centers on a July 25 phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
The intelligence official who lodged the complaint detailed concerns that Trump had pressured Ukraine to aid him politically by investigating former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter on allegations of corruption. The complaint was declassified last month, and the White House released a memo summarizing the call that corroborated the complaint.
A second whistleblower has since come forward with first-hand knowledge of some of the allegations outlined in the original whistleblower complaint.
According to the PRRI poll, 98% of Republicans who say Fox News is their primary source of news oppose Trump being impeached and removed from office. This view remains consistent across education levels, with 96% of Republicans with a college degree opposing impeachment, compared to 92% of Republicans without a degree.
In contrast, 78% of Democrats agree that Trump should be impeached and removed from office, according to the poll.
Fox News connection to the Trump administration
Alex Brandon/Associated Press
According to The Washington Post, Fox News' coverage of Trump has been broadly friendly, particularly on issues surrounding impeachment.
After the White House released its transcript of Trump's call with Zelensky and declassified the whistleblower complaint, Fox News was more likely than other cable news outlets to refer to the information provided as "secondhand," according to The Post. Fox News also airs several hours of news that is "consistently friendly" to Trump, it added.
Fox News' often positive coverage of Trump may stem from the outlet's connection to the Trump administration. Left-leaning media watchdog Media Matters said that as of August, 18 current and former Trump staffers had previously been Fox News employees.
More than 200 House members support an impeachment inquiry into Trump, all of whom are Democrats with the exception of one independent. Republicans on Capitol Hill have rallied around Trump amid the impeachment probe, though Lindsey Graham, one of President Donald Trump's staunchest allies in Washington, said on Sunday that he may change his mind on impeachment if new evidence of wrongdoing presents itself.
On Monday, Trump demanded that Republicans "get tougher and fight" on his behalf.
"The Democrats are trying to hurt the Republican Party for the election, which is coming up, where we're doing very well," Trump said at a Cabinet meeting on Monday.
The PRRI poll was compiled using data from a series of interviews of a random sample of 2,527 adults aged 18 and up, living in all 50 US states and Washington, DC. Interviews were done both online and over the phone. The margin of error for the survey is +/- 2.8 percentage points at the 95% level of confidence.
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