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Trump seizes on poll that shows half agree Mueller investigation is a 'witch hunt'

The Hill logo The Hill 3/18/2019 Brett Samuels
Donald Trump, Robert Mueller are posing for a picture: Trump seizes on poll that shows half agree Mueller investigation is a 'witch hunt' © Getty Images Trump seizes on poll that shows half agree Mueller investigation is a 'witch hunt' President Trump on Monday seized on a newly released poll that showed half of those surveyed agree with his assessment that special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation is a "witch hunt."

Trump tweeted out the finding of the USA Today/Suffolk poll, adding that "Very few think it is legit!"

"We will soon find out?" he added, alluding to widespread reports in recent weeks that the special counsel is preparing to conclude his investigation.

Pollsters asked participants if they agreed with Trump that the special counsel's probe into Russian election interference is a "witch hunt," and that he's been subjected to more investigations than past presidents because of politics.

Half of those surveyed said they agreed, and 47 percent said they did not. The responses were sharply divided along partisan lines, with 86 percent of Republicans siding with the president, and just 14 percent of Democrats doing the same.

Fifty-four percent of independents surveyed said they agree Trump is the victim of a "witch hunt," while 42 percent disagree, the poll found.

The survey additionally showed a decline in confidence in Mueller's credibility, compared to a December poll, but more people still trust the special counsel than trust Trump.

The poll found 55 percent of respondents have a little or a lot of trust in Mueller to conduct a fair and accurate investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

By comparison, 43 percent said they have a little or a lot of trust in the president's denials that his campaign colluded with Russia. Fifty-two percent said they have "little or no trust" in Trump's denials.

Monday's poll surveyed 1,000 registered voters from March 13-17, and has a margin of error of 3 percentage points.

The president routinely rails against the special counsel's investigation, decrying it as a politically motivated inquiry and questioning why it is not targeting Democrats.

Mueller has indicted more than 20 Russians, and has implicated six former Trump associates in the probe this far: Michael Flynn, Richard Gates, Paul Manafort, George Papadopoulos, Michael Cohen and Roger Stone.

Manafort was sentenced last week to additional prison time as part of the probe, bringing his total sentence to 7.5 years. Papadopoulos has already served a brief jail stint, and Cohen is facing a three-year sentence after he pleaded guilty to bank fraud, tax fraud, campaign finance law violations and lying to Congress.

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