Even though Donald Trump repeatedly promised to be the president for coal miners, he has spent his first 100 days in office abandoning these Americans in favor of pro-Wall Street policies.
Ohio Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown isn’t letting it go unnoticed, though, saying on MSNBC’s All In with Chris Hayes that he plans to “raise hell” until coal miners get the help they were promised from candidate Trump.
[Coal miners] are just perplexed, a number of coal miners voted for candidate Trump. They heard him talk about bringing coal jobs back, and they are simply saying government should do what it’s done since the days of Harry Truman, and that is provide health insurance to coal mine retirees and the widows of coal miners. It doesn’t cost taxpayers, it’s simple, you take money from the abandoned mine fund, put it into this health care. This expires at the end of April, and it’s just immoral to talk about tax cuts for Wall Street, cutting the corporate tax … and not take care of the coal miners … We’re really raising hell about this and we’re going to make sure this week that, if there’s going to be a continuing resolution, it better have permanent health care for coal miners in it.
To make matters worse, Trump isn’t even pretending to care about these Americans anymore. Instead, he has surrounded himself by special interests and Wall Street fatcats and is now proposing a massive tax handout to corporations. The president wants to cut the corporate tax rate by more than half, from 35 percent to 15 percent.
Meanwhile, voters in rural and middle America who thought Trump would be their president are beginning to realize that they’re victims of one of the biggest political cons in American history. Trump may have been effective at convincing certain voters that he would help “the forgotten men and women” of the country, but words can only get a president so far.
As Vice President Joe Biden frequently said, “Don’t tell me what you value. Show me your budget, and I’ll tell you what you value.”
It’s becoming increasingly clear what Trump cares about, and it’s not the lower- and middle-class Americans who helped fuel his Electoral College victory last fall.
Now it’s up to the Democrats to step up, as Sherrod Brown did on Monday night, and show “the forgotten men and women” of America which party is looking out for them.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.