Nearly 40% of white voters without a college degree switched from Obama to Trump based on campaign promises that are the opposite of the Republican agenda. When these voters catch on to the fact that they were lied to, it will be a disaster for the Republican Party.
Nate Cohn of The New York Times reported, “The exit polls also show all of the signs that Mr. Trump was winning over Obama voters. Perhaps most strikingly, Mr. Trump won 19 percent of white voters without a degree who approved of Mr. Obama’s performance, including 8 percent of those who “strongly” approved of Mr. Obama’s performance and 10 percent of white working-class voters who wanted to continue Mr. Obama’s policies. Mr. Trump won 20 percent of self-identified liberal white working-class voters, according to the exit polls, and 38 percent of those who wanted policies that were more liberal than Mr. Obama’s.”
Compare the desire for more liberal policies with what Trump and the Republican Congressional majority will be acting on in January:
1). A repeal of the ACA that will take healthcare away from 30 million Americans.
2). A massive tax cut and deregulation agenda that will benefit the wealthiest Americans and biggest corporations.
3). The eliminating of Obama administration action that expanded overtime pay rules.
4). The privatization of Social Security and Medicare.
What Trump and the Republicans are proposing is a hard right turn.
White working class voters who switched from Obama to Trump were bombarded with wall to wall cable news coverage of Trump promising better health care for all, good blue collar jobs, lower taxes, and that he wouldn’t touch Social Security and Medicare. A voter who gets their information primarily from television would get the impression that Trump is offering up an appealing fairly liberal agenda targeted to them.
The reality is that Trump and the Republicans are committed to a vastly different agenda once they take power in January 2017.
President-elect Trump, Majority Leader McConnell, and Speaker of the House Ryan are setting the Republican Party up for disaster. The Republicans are trapped between the far right base of their party and a majority of the country that wants more liberal policies. One can see the conflict on the horizon from miles away. Either Trump and the GOP govern from the middle and alienate their base, or they govern from the right and alienate the rest of the country.
The third option is to lie.
Trump and the Republican Congressional leadership are already committed to this path by “repealing” Obamacare but continuing to fund it for years to come. Trump sold white working class voters on promises that he has no intention of delivering on.
The bill will come due for these lies, and when it does, it will be a disaster for the Republican Party.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association