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NBC News poll: Most want vote on Trump Supreme Court nominee before midterms

The survey also found most Democrats and independents said the next justice should be moderate, while 65 percent of Republicans want a conservative.
by Dartunorro Clark /
Image: President Donald Trump speaks to the press aboard Air Force One en route to Bedminster, New Jersey, from Joint Base Andrews
President Donald Trump aboard Air Force One en route to Bedminster, New Jersey, from Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, on June 29, 2018.Eric Thayer / Reuters

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A majority of Americans believe the Republican-led Senate should vote on President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee before the November midterm elections, undercutting the Democratic argument that it should be delayed until after the pivotal fall elections, according to a new NBC News|SurveyMonkey poll.

More than six in 10 Americans, or 62 percent, said Trump's nominee, who will be announced on Monday, should be confirmed or rejected before the elections in which control of the House and Senate are at stake. About three in 10, or 33 percent, said the Senate should wait until after the elections, the poll found.

Sixty-six percent of Democrats and 60 percent of Republicans said Trump's nominee would be an important factor in their vote in the midterms. However, less than half of independents, 46 percent, said it would be on their mind when casting their November ballot.

The vast majority of Republicans surveyed, 85 percent, said the Senate's vote on the nominee should take place before the election. Roughly six in 10 Independents, or 61 percent, agreed. However, more than half of Democrats, 55 percent, believe the voting on a new justice should wait.

Trump has publicly named 25 potential nominees, which includes six women, and also has a short list of contenders to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy.

Americans are also divided on the political tilt of the court and whether it would uphold landmark decisions, such as abortion.

The majority of independents, 63 percent, and Democrats, 53 percent, said the next justice should be moderate, while 65 percent of Republicans want a conservative on the bench. However, 61 percent of Americans said, regardless of party affiliation, that they wanted a justice who would uphold Roe v. Wade, the 1973 landmark court case that legalized abortion. Only three in 10 said they wanted a justice who would cast a vote to overturn the decision.

The NBC News|SurveyMonkey poll was conducted June 27-July 1, 2018, among a national sample of 2,652 adults. Respondents for this nonprobability survey were selected from the nearly 3 million people who take surveys on the SurveyMonkey platform each day. Results have an error estimate of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points. For full results and methodology, click here.

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