President Donald Trump on Tuesday shared a tweet that suggested a majority of Americans supported his presidency, and by proxy that inferred it would be difficult for Democratic lawmakers to garner support for an impeachment inquiry against him.
The image shows a county-by-county look at which areas were won by Trump in the 2016 election versus which were won by his opponent, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. Juxtaposed on top of the image, in white lettering, are the words “try to impeach this.”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 1, 2019
With red symbolizing the president’s wins, it appears as though there’s a clear, almost unanimous support of the president. There’s just one problem: the map is inaccurate, or, at the very least, is an inaccurate portrayal of Trump’s actual support.
The map doesn’t consider different population rates. Cook County, Illinois, which has a very high population density, is portrayed as equal to Granite County, Montana, with both receiving the same color density (one blue, the other red) in spite of their significant differences in the number of people who live in those areas.
A much more accurate map, created by statistician Ken Field, portrays both the election outcome and the population density of the areas Trump and Clinton “won.”
Most Accurate Map where 1 dot = 1 vote, where it was cast, in Presidential election 2016: [dasymetric dot density by KEN FIELD]
— Su Mohan #WinBlue🗽 #DemsWork4USA🇺🇸 (@SuMoh7) March 24, 2019
The map that Field has created, viewable in the tweet shown above, is called a “dasymetric,” or dot density, map, per reporting from Wired. For every vote cast in the country, a dot is placed where it happened, with red dots going for Trump and blue dots going for Clinton. On this map, it appears to be a more equal outcome, a closer representation to the actual outcome in 2016. (White areas on the map are places where population rates are very low.)
What about on the issue of impeachment? While there isn’t any similar map that tells us what people think, there is some recent polling that indicates Trump’s tweet is misleading us once again.
A YouGov/CBS News poll, for instance, found that 55 percent of Americans support the idea of an impeachment inquiry led by Democrats moving forward, while 45 percent said they disapproved of the inquiry.
A Quinnipiac poll found similar results, though they asked two separate questions on the matter. That poll first asked people if they wanted Trump removed through impeachment at this time, with 47 percent saying they did and another 47 percent saying they didn’t. But on the matter of whether Americans overall supported the inquiry into the matter, a majority (52 percent) said they did, while again, contradicting Trump’s tweet suggesting otherwise.