Light Wave


Polling reveals 51% of voters think convicting Trump of a ‘serious crime’ is a ‘fair outcome’

By Jake Beardslee · February 1, 2024

In brief…

  • Most voters say convicting Trump of a serious crime would be fair, but most Republicans disagree.
  • Many poll respondents were unaware of specific charges against Trump.
  • Convicting Trump could hurt his electability per the poll, with more Republicans wanting an alternative.
  • Potential conviction leads to a rise in Republicans wanting another nominee option.
Most U.S. voters say convicting Donald Trump of a serious crime would be fair, but Republicans largely disagree and continue supporting him, a new poll indicates.  Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia

A new poll from Yahoo News/YouGov indicates that most U.S. voters believe convicting former President Donald Trump of a serious crime would be fair, but a large majority of Republicans disagree.

The survey asked respondents about Trump’s numerous legal troubles, including charges of obstructing the 2020 election and taking classified documents. It found 51% of voters say “convicting Trump of a ‘serious crime’ would be a ‘fair outcome meant to hold him accountable for his actions.’” However, 72% of Republicans say conviction would be “an unfair outcome meant to damage [Trump] politically.”

Many respondents were unaware of the specific charges against Trump. But if convicted, most said they’d see a candidate as unfit for presidency if convicted of election interference or mishandling classified information. Still, nearly all Republicans continue supporting Trump, with 79% backing him for the 2024 nomination.

Convicting Trump could impact his electability, the poll indicates. One respondent said: “In a scenario where Trump is convicted of a serious crime, those numbers flip to 39% for Biden vs. 35% for Trump – a 10-point decline for the former president.”

The article notes how it’s unknown whether “hypotheticals will pan out.” But it says among Republicans, desire for a “Trump alternative on the GOP primary ballot” rises from 48% to 56% if he’s convicted.