Trump

President Donald Trump answered questions from reporters during an event at the White House on Wednesday.

— AP Photo/Evan Vucci

President Donald Trump’s headaches in a must-win state multiplied Tuesday, with a new poll showing that a majority of the state’s registered voters believe a rapidly expanding impeachment inquiry spearheaded by Democrats on Capitol Hill has merit.

Fifty-one percent of the 650 registered voters who responded to the poll by FOX-43 TV in York, Pa., said Congress is justified to investigate Trump’s now-infamous July phone conversation with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky, in which Trump pressured the foreign leader to investigate former Veep, and possible 2020 rival, Joe Biden.

The poll’s release Tuesday came the same day the White House blocked Democrats’ efforts to depose a key player in the case, European Union Ambassador Gordon Sondland, and as it upped its war of words with Congressional investigators.

Forty-six percent of respondents to the FOX-43 poll, which was jointly conducted with the generally GOP-friendly Susquehanna Polling & Research in Harrisburg, dismissed the inquiry as a political stunt.

The poll, which was conducted from Sept. 30 to Oct. 4, included 307 Democrats, 259 Republicans, and 10% independent voters. The latter cohort is considered a critical bloc by the Big Two parties as they try to win American voters’ hearts and minds heading into campaign season.

About two-thirds of respondents (35%) identified politically as a moderate, while 200 people (31%) said they were conservative. And just 16 percent of respondents said they were liberal. The poll was also 54% women, and 46% men, FOX-43 reported.

The local result in a state that Trump carried by just 44,000 votes in 2016 mirrored a national poll by Quinnipiac University that was also released Tuesday.

Though the nationwide survey found voters still split on whether Trump should actually be impeached, a majority of voters, 53-43% approved of the House’s inquiry. A week ago, voters responding to a similar poll, approved of the inquiry 52 – 45%, Quinnipiac pollsters said.

“Despite a week of blistering partisan exchanges, the sound and fury over whistleblowers and impeachment, the needle hardly moves,” Quinnipiac’s Tim Malloy said in an email. “The country remains closely divided on whether to impeach and remove President Trump from office, and his base remains granite solid.”

John L. Micek is Editor-in-Chief of the Pennsylvania Capital-Star, where this story first appeared.

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