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1 in 5 Republicans Who Think Trump Committed Crimes Say They’ll Vote for Him

The poll results are indicative of just how strongly Trump has convinced his followers that he can do no wrong.

Former President Donald Trump greets guests at the Republican Party of Iowa 2023 Lincoln Dinner on July 28, 2023, in Des Moines, Iowa.

As former President Donald Trump continues losing court cases and facing serious charges from government prosecutors, new polling finds that — despite a rising share of Republicans who believe he may be guilty of serious crimes — support for the former president for the upcoming presidential primaries remains high and extremely stable.

According to a poll by The New York Times/Siena College released this week,, the proportion of Republican voters who believe that Trump committed serious crimes has more than doubled since September, from just 6 percent to 13 percent this July. The proportion who say they’re unsure has also increased from 10 percent to 13 percent. Even among people who believe that Trump didn’t commit any serious federal crimes, 17 percent say that they think he may have mishandled classified documents.

And yet, support for Trump has remained rock-steady throughout this increase in Republican voters who believe he’s guilty.

The polling found that, among all candidates for the GOP presidential primary so far, Trump received 54 percent support — 37 points more than the next-leading candidate, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who received only 17 percent support in the poll.

In fact, support for Trump is still relatively strong among those who believed that he committed serious crimes. In a head-to-head against DeSantis, Trump still received 22 percent among those who believed in his guilt — more support than DeSantis got in the overall poll, The Times pointed out.

The findings echo those of other recent polls; an NPR/PBS Newshour/Marist poll released last week found that while the proportion of Republicans who say Trump has done nothing wrong has fallen by 9 points since June, the proportion of Republicans who say they’ll back him has only fallen by 6 points. This indicates that there is a proportion of overlap between Republicans who think he may have committed some form of wrongdoing but still support him.

The support for Trump despite his crimes is a concerning trend. Trump has already been found guilty of rape in his trial against E. Jean Carroll, as the judge in the case clarified recently.

Meanwhile, Trump is facing a large slate of charges in two of his indictments so far, including 34 felony counts in his case involving hush money payments to Stormy Daniels and 40 charges in federal prosecutors’ case regarding his alleged improper handling of classified documents. Two more indictments are expected to come any day now, concerning his campaign to overturn the 2020 presidential election and incite the January 6 attack on the Capitol and his push in Georgia to overturn the result of the election there.

The poll results are indicative of just how strongly Trump has bucked norms and convinced his followers that he can do no wrong.

If a significant proportion of voters believe that Trump is guilty of any number of these alleged crimes but still want to vote for him, then it follows that they believe that someone who has threatened national security by hoarding documents or tried to use his power to overturn a presidential election is fit for one of the most influential political offices in the world. Despite government ethics experts’ warnings that Trump’s actions should disqualify him from office outright, Republican voters evidently think that he’s not only fit for office, but more fit than any other candidate before them.

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