US POLITICS

Calls To Impeach Trump Reach New Heights Online

The renewed calls to impeach Trump follow his reported intelligence leak and revelations in a memo from former FBI Director Comey

US POLITICS
Protesters rally against President Trump's firing of FBI Director James Comey. — REUTERS
May 17, 2017 at 7:07 AM ET

May 16 is being described by anonymous White Officials as “the worst day” of President Donald Trump’s presidency after it emerged that the president had shared highly classified intelligence with Russia, and also asked former FBI Director James Comey to shut down the investigation into Michael Flynn, the former national security adviser. In response to this latest wave of presidential controversies, Vocativ observed a marked increase in talk about impeachment on Twitter and in the media.

The word “impeach” was used in 107,313 tweets over the course of May 16, and 42,194 times when paired with Trump’s Twitter handle or the term “Trump” in the same tweet. Uses of the word “impeachment” hit a record high since January 20, the day Trump took office, being used in 161,955 tweets. “Impeachment” was mentioned more than 61,100 times when written together with either “trump” or @RealDonaldTrump.

Meanwhile, the hashtag #ImpeachTrump was used nearly 60,000 times on Tuesday. The only time that hashtag was used more was on May 10, the day that Trump fired Comey. #ImpeachTrump has been tweeted more than 2.3 million times since January 20.

The same sentiment could be seen in media headlines, with 569 news stories in American media outlets discussing “impeachment” over the past week. Vocativ used Media Cloud, a media analysis tool created by MIT, to search for mentions of impeachment in the mainstream media and partisan media sites on the left and right in order to get that figure. The last time that impeachment was discussed so heavily in the news was in early March, when South Korea impeached and removed President Park Geun-hye over a massive corruption scandal. That incident prompted 316 stories from March 8 through March 14.

Another blow for Trump came in the form a public opinion poll released on Tuesday that showed that more Americans support impeaching the president than don’t. At the same time, organizers of a petition urging Congress to open impeachment proceedings against Trump claimed on Tuesday that they were nearly at one million signatures. The petition has been circulating since January.