House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Capitol Hill with Rep. Adam Schiff. Photo: Eric Baradat/AFP via Getty Images

While national support for an impeachment inquiry is growing, it's not a clear winner for Democrats in the most competitive House districts just yet.

  • That's according to an internal impeachment polling memo, obtained by Axios, that was sent to House Democrats Thursday night.

Why it matters: Their vulnerable members this cycle are the ones who helped the party win the House in 2018 because they were in districts that flipped from Republican or that Trump won in 2016. They're not in the clear yet, as an impeachment inquiry is only "slightly favorable 49-48," per Democrats' memo.

Two impeachment polls — a national survey and a battleground survey — were conducted by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's pollsters.

  • Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-Ill.) sent the memo to the caucus, which included specific messaging guidance:
"When discussing Trump’s actions, keep the language simple, direct and values-based. ... Emphasize the core value that no one is above the law. ... The whistleblower did the right thing by coming forward ... Demonstrate your constant focus on the biggest issues facing families in the country, specifically health care and wages."

Democrats' national impeachment polling found "voters back a Democrat who supports an impeachment investigation over a Republican who opposes an impeachment investigation by 11 points."

Don't forget: Part of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's pre-impeachment calculus was thinking about how to protect her most vulnerable members in their re-election efforts.

  • Now that they're moving toward impeachment — which has the potential to make this a very divisive election — Bustos pushed Democrats to take a more careful approach forward: "It reaffirms the strong position Democrats hold on this issue, due to the focus and restraint with which our Caucus has approached this pressing and serious matter," she emailed her colleagues summarizing her takeaway from the poll.

Go deeper: Read the memo here.

Go deeper

Amy Harder, author of Generate
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Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty

The most notable part of Thursday’s presidential debate on climate change was the fact it was included as a topic and assumed as a fact.

The big picture: This is the first time in U.S. presidential history that climate change was a featured issue at a debate. It signals how the problem has become part of the fabric of our society. More extreme weather, like the wildfires ravaging Colorado, is pushing the topic to the front-burner.

Finally, a real debate

Photo: Morry Gash/AP

A more disciplined President Trump held back from the rowdy interruptions at tonight's debate in Nashville, while making some assertions so outlandish that Joe Biden chuckled and even closed his eyes. A Trump campaign adviser told Axios: "He finally listened." 

The result: A real debate.

Biden to Trump: "I have not taken a penny from any foreign source ever in my life"

Former VP Joe Biden pushed back Thursday against allegations from President Trump, saying he had never profited from foreign sources. "Nothing was unethical," Biden told debate moderator Kristen Welker about his son Hunter's work in Ukraine while he was vice president.

Why it matters: Earlier on Thursday, Hunter Biden's former business partner, Tony Bobulinski, released a statement saying Joe Biden's claims that he never discussed overseas business dealings with his son were "false."