2. SOUNDBITE (English) Eric Tucker, Associated Press:
"So on overall job performance, 42 percent of Americans approve of the job that the President is doing. Fifty-six percent disapprove. What's interesting is that despite all of the tumult that's occurred over the last 12 months in the White House, those numbers have held fairly steady since this time last year. There is a stark partisan divide about that, so we have 8 in 10 Republicans who approve of the President's job performance and just one in 10 Democrats say the same."
3. Graphic: Trump Russia Probe, Tried to obstruct investigation 58%
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Eric Tucker, Associated Press:
"On one of the questions about whether the president tried to obstruct the Russia investigation. Fifty-eight percent of Americans say they believe he did. Then a whopping 90 percent of Democrats who were surveyed say that he did. That really reflects again what we what we think of as a divide among Democrats and Republicans. And one of the central questions of the Mueller investigation. That 90 percent is compared to just 22 percent of Republicans."
5. Graphic: If Trump directed hush money payments to women, Impeach 45%, Don't impeach 53%
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Eric Tucker, Associated Press:
"The survey shows that if Mueller's investigation finds evidence that Trump had inappropriate or illegal contacts with Russia, 51 percent believe that Congress should initiate some sort of proceedings to have him removed from office. Forty six percent say no."
7. SOUNDBITE (English) Eric Tucker, Associated Press:
"And then on the last sort of question as to the hush money payments that went during the campaign to two women. The idea was to of course cover up extramarital affairs that they were presenting. Forty-five percent say Congress should take steps to remove the President from office if there's evidence that he indeed directed his attorney Michael Cohen to arrange those payments. Slightly more, 53 percent, said Congress should not take steps to do that."
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Eric Tucker, Associated Press:
"One of the things that struck me about this poll is the consistency of viewpoint in terms of how Americans perceive the President and the investigations. So, for instance, if you were inclined to believe that Mueller's investigation is baseless in the Russian context then you similarly don't believe that there's evidence that he tried to obstruct it and then you similarly also do not believe that there is evidence of illegal hush money payments. And so you wind up getting, in our survey at least, a lot of no's across the board. And then conversely a lot of yeses across the board among people who believe yes, there was potential collusion; yes, there was obstruction and yes there's a problem in the hush money payments that could lead to impeachment. And so you don't see much discrepancy and I think that speaks to the strength of opinions that people have about the president at this point."
9. Medium of President Donald Trump speaking at the signing ceremony for an agriculture bill
A majority of Americans say they believe President Donald Trump has tried to obstruct the investigation into his campaign's ties to Russia, though the public is divided on whether he should be removed from office if he's found to have stymied the probe, according to a new poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.
Meanwhile, the survey shows Americans are somewhat less likely to say Congress should remove Trump from office if he directed his former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, to arrange hush money payments to cover up claims of extramarital relationships during the 2016 campaign.
Still, opinions on both matters see a stark partisan divide.
The poll was conducted just after federal prosecutors in New York implicated Trump in illegal payments to a former Playboy model and adult actress and after special counsel Robert Mueller revealed that discussions over a possible Trump Tower in Moscow extended longer than had been previously known. It was done amid signs of intensifying legal danger for Trump, whose actions face scrutiny in New York and in Mueller's investigation into possible coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign.
Overall, 42 percent of Americans approve of the job Trump is doing as president, while 56 percent disapprove. Those numbers have held steady for most of the year. About 8 in 10 Republicans approve of Trump's job performance, while just 1 in 10 Democrats say the same.
The swirling investigations are helping define public opinion, creating clear divisions about whether and for what Trump should be impeached and to what extent he might be culpable of wrongdoing.
A majority of Americans _ 58 percent _think the president has tried to impede the Russia investigation, while 4 in 10 say he has not. An overwhelming share of Democrats, 90 percent, say the president has sought to obstruct the probe, compared with 22 percent of Republicans.
The survey also shows that if Mueller's investigation finds that Trump did not personally have inappropriate contacts with the Kremlin but nonetheless tried to obstruct the FBI's work, 51 percent of Americans think Congress should take steps to remove him from office, while 46 percent think it should not.
The special counsel's obstruction investigation has shadowed the president for a year and a half, unfolding alongside his inquiry into whether the Trump campaign coordinated with Russia to sway the election and the separate campaign finance probe in New York. The last month has produced bombshell developments in the investigation, including Cohen's sentencing, allegations that Trump's former campaign chairman lied to prosecutors and a judge's unexpected upbraiding of ex-national security adviser Michael Flynn.
The AP-NORC poll of 1,067 adults was conducted Dec. 13-16 using a sample drawn from NORC's probability-based AmeriSpeak Panel, which is designed to be representative of the U.S. population. The margin of sampling error for all respondents is plus or minus 4.1 percentage points.
Respondents were first selected randomly using address-based sampling methods, and later interviewed online or by phone.