Poll: 1 in 4 Republicans think Trump did something illegal or unethical in keeping classified government docs

By | September 13, 2022

One in four Republicans believe that former President Donald Trump did something either illegal or unethical in keeping government materials after leaving office, according to a new poll.

A new NPR NewsHour/Marist national poll suggests that 44% of Americans think Trump did something illegal when he held onto documents — some of which were classified, according to the FBI — following his presidency, whereas 17% think that Trump did something unethical, but not illegal. Nearly 30% think Trump did nothing wrong.

According to the poll, 47% of Americans feel that Trump did something wrong and should be charged as a result, including 10% of Republicans, whereas 14% think that though he did something wrong, he should not face any charges.

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When asked if they wanted Trump to run for president again, 32% said yes, one percentage point more than a poll taken in September 2020. Among the participants, 61% said they do not want to see him to run again.

Trump has not yet announced if he will run for president in 2024, but has teased the idea during several recent speeches.

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“Former President Trump is losing the battle with public opinion over whether he did anything wrong by taking government documents to Mar-a-Lago,” director of the Marist Institute for Public Opinion Lee M. Miringoff said alongside the poll. “But his core support remains intact regardless of the results of the investigation.”

In early August, the FBI raided Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home in search of classified materials that he was alleged to have held onto after leaving the presidency. As the investigation unfolds, the court recently ordered a special master be appointed to “review the seized property, manage assertions of privilege and make recommendations thereon, and evaluate claims for return of property.”

There are several candidates running in this year’s midterm elections who are endorsed by the former president, including Pennsylvania Senate candidate Dr. Mehmet Oz, Arizona Senate candidate Blake Masters, and Georgia Senate candidate Herschel Walker.

The NPR NewsHour/Marist national survey was conducted from Aug. 29-Sept. 1, 2022, with a margin of error of plus or minus 4.1 percentage points.