Donald Trump’s campaign is entering the darkest days of his presidency — as House Democrats begin a formal impeachment inquiry 13 months out from the 2020 election — with a singular strategy: convince voters the most powerful man in the world is now a powerless victim of partisan politics.

With impeachment, campaign officials and White House allies believe Trump has gained a formidable advantage in his bid for reelection: one that energizes his core supporters, places a segment of independent voters at odds with his opponents and potentially imperils swing-state Democrats whose constituents adamantly oppose his early removal from office.

To the Trump team, it’s the perfect opportunity to make Americans feel sorry for a president who has rarely pitied anyone but himself.

“Democrats overreaching has been such a political gift to Trump, over and over again. They’ve been screaming ‘treason!’ and ‘impeachment!’ after nearly everything that happens,” said former Trump adviser Cliff Sims. “Middle America is mostly numb to it and now the latest impeachment gambit is helping galvanize moderate voters — the same ones who punished Republicans for overreaching on Clinton — especially in suburban areas.”

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