Opinion by Julian Zelizer, CNN Political Analyst
Updated 9:38 PM ET, Fri January 31, 2020
(CNN) The Iowa caucuses are almost here. Voters will have a chance to express their preferences among the Democratic presidential candidates on Monday after months of campaigning, advertisements and televised town halls and debates. While Iowa alone will not determine the party’s nominee, it will mark the official start of the campaign season.
It is at this critical juncture that Democrats need to pivot from the impeachment trial to the 2020 election. Each candidate needs to figure out how to shift his or her focus to galvanizing voters now that the tumult over impeachment is coming to an end.
The most important step will be for Democrats to build on the main lessons of impeachment — rather than trying to put this saga behind them. Sure, Senate Republicans have blocked witnesses from testifying and President Donald Trump is all but certain to remain in office. But throughout the proceedings, House Democrats exposed just how far the President was willing to go to abuse his power. The message seems to have sunk in with voters, and polls found 75% of registered voters wanted to hear from witnesses and 51% believe Trump should be removed from office.