Nadler on why anti-impeachment Dem is switching parties

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., said Sunday the only reason anti-impeachment Rep. Jeff Van Drew, D-N.J., is set to switch parties is because he saw polling that suggested Democrats in his district don't want to renominate him.

"What he's reacting to is public polling that shows he can't get renominated," Nadler told ABC's "This Week." "His electorate in his district is 24 percent to renominate him and 60 percent to nominate somebody else."

"But more to that point, this is not political," Nadler said of impeachment. "We should not be looking at those things. This is the defense of our democracy. Do we stay a democratic republic or do we turn into a tyranny?"

Two Democratic leadership sources told NBC News Saturday that Van Drew, who resides in a southern New Jersey swing district and is an outspoken opponent of impeachment — is likely to soon switch parties and become a Republican.

Trump excitedly welcomed the news, tweeting, "Wow, that would be big" after earlier thanking Van Drew for his "honesty" in speaking out against impeachment.

An internal poll conducted for Van Drew this month and obtained by NBC News suggested the congressman was unlikely to make it through a Democratic primary in New Jersey's 2nd Congressional District, with just 28 percent of Democratic respondents saying Van Drew "deserves to be re-nominated," while 58 percent said that "another Democrat" should be the Democratic nominee in the district's 2020 election.

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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, right, and U.S. President Donald Trump pose during a group photo during a NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg rejected Wednesday French criticism that the military alliance is suffering from brain death, and insisted that the organization is adapting to modern challenges. (Peter Nicholls, Pool Photo via AP)
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, left, reaches out to shake hands with U.S. President Donald Trump at the official arrivals for a NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg rejected Wednesday French criticism that the military alliance is suffering from brain death, and insisted that the organization is adapting to modern challenges. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson walks over to U.S. President Donald Trump who is talking to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau prior to a NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019. As NATO leaders meet and show that the world's biggest security alliance is adapting to modern threats, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg is refusing to concede that the future of the 29-member alliance is under a cloud. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, right, and U.S. President Donald Trump pose during a group photo during a NATO leaders meeting at The Grove hotel and resort in Watford, Hertfordshire, England, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg rejected Wednesday French criticism that the military alliance is suffering from brain death, and insisted that the organization is adapting to modern challenges. (Peter Nicholls, Pool Photo via AP)
President Donald Trump meets with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson at the United Nations General Assembly, Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2019, in New York. In a decision with wide-ranging political ramifications, Britain's Supreme Court plans to give its verdict Tuesday on the legality of Prime Minister Boris Johnson's five-week suspension of Parliament. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
President Donald Trump meets with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson at the United Nations General Assembly, Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2019, in New York. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
President Donald Trump meets with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson at the United Nations General Assembly, Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2019, in New York. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
President Donald Trump meets with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson at the United Nations General Assembly, Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2019, in New York. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
U.S. President Donald Trump, left, and Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson attend a working breakfast at the Hotel du Palais on the sidelines of the G-7 summit in Biarritz, France, Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
President Donald Trump and Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, left, speak to the media before a working breakfast meeting at the Hotel du Palais on the sidelines of the G-7 summit in Biarritz, France, Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019. (Erin Schaff, The New York Times, Pool)
FILE - In this Aug. 25, 2019, file photo, President Donald Trump and Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, left, speak to the media before a working breakfast meeting at the Hotel du Palais on the sidelines of the G-7 summit in Biarritz, France. Johnson says he’ll tell President Donald Trump that the U.K.’s state-funded health service will be off the table in any future trade negotiations, and that the U.S. will have to open its markets to British goods if it wants to make a deal. (Erin Schaff/The New York Times, Pool, File)
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In 2018, Van Drew won his seat with 52.9 percent of the vote. His district voted for Trump in 2016 after supporting former President Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012.

"Despite knowing full well that the President has abused the powers of his office, Congressman Van Drew is now willing to enable Donald Trump just to try to salvage his own election," Democratic New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said in a Saturday statement.

The House Judiciary Committee approved two articles of impeachment against Trump on Friday for his efforts to have Ukraine probe former Vice President Joe Biden, his son Hunter Biden and Democrats, and his efforts to withhold information from Congress as they probed his conduct. The articles are expected to be passed in a Wednesday vote before the full House. Trump would then be subjected to a Senate trial.

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