CNN Analyst Predicts Trump Impeachment Won't Hurt Democrats Much in 2020: It Would 'Light a Fire Under Democratic Voters'

CNN senior political analyst Ron Brownstein this weekend reiterated his prediction that impeaching President Donald Trump will not hurt Democrats in 2020.

During an appearance on Sunday's CNN Newsroom, Brownstein discussed his recent Atlantic article titled "Democrats Learned the Wrong Lesson From Clinton's Impeachment" with weekend anchor Ana Cabrera.

"There is a major split in the Democratic Party over whether it should move to impeach President Trump," Cabrera said. "The problem isn't whether Democrats think the president's actions deserve impeachment, for the most part they do think that. The problem is that a lot of Democrats worry impeachment could hurt their chances of winning in 2020. They often cite the beating Republicans took after impeaching President [Bill] Clinton."

"You know, when Republicans kept control of Congress and went on to win the White House in the following presidential election," she added, before asking Brownstein why some believe Democrats "would be foolish not to impeach."

Brownstein responded by noting that in "January 2001 Republicans controlled the White House, the House and initially, the Senate," just two years after the GOP-led House moved to impeach Clinton "against the opposition of the majority of the country."

"Part of the problem... is that people cut of their analysis after 1998," he said. "They don't look at the full frame and the impeachment and the issue surrounding Bill Clinton personally radiated through both of those elections."

While Brownstein admitted Democrats did gain seats in 1998 House elections, he argued that it wasn't a "huge loss."

"Republicans lost five seats. They won the national popular vote, they won the vote among independents. There were 91 Republicans at that point in districts that had voted for Bill Clinton two years earlier. Four of them lost their seats, that's it," he explained.

Brownstein went on to argue that "an impeachment process would focus the attention of independent voters on the aspects of [Trump's] presidency that they are least comfortable with and it would also light a fire under Democratic voters."

"I think the idea that [impeachment] is a clear political loser for Democrats is just something that is not supported by the evidence of 1998 and 2000," he added.

While Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has indicated she is opposed to launching impeachment proceedings, 58 House Democrats have publicly supported launching an impeachment inquiry against Trump, according to The Hill. One Republican, Rep. Justin Amash (Mich.), has also admitted that Trump engaged in impeachable conduct over the findings of special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia report.

Calls for the president's impeachment has ramped up in recent weeks after Mueller gave an unexpected press conference late last month, where he reiterated that he would have stated if the evidence collected during his nearly two-year-long probe cleared Trump of criminal wrongdoing, but he didn't. The special counsel revealed that an obstruction charge was "not an option" available to him as long-standing Department of Justice guidelines prohibits a sitting president from being charged with a federal crime.

Trump Impeachment CNN Ron Brownstein
CNN senior political analyst Ron Brownstein on Sunday reiterated his opinion that impeaching Trump won't actually hurt Democrats in 2020 during an interview with the network's weekend anchor Ana Cabrera. CNN/Screenshot