There aren’t many times I can say “I haven’t seen this point made in all the Trump coverage” but for me this is one of them

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A Democrat looking at the above might expect any self-respecting Republican to distance him or herself from Trump. You can understand why someone running for the House doesn’t do so (they need those votes) but why don’t more leaders or more voters turn away? “Why do 40% of voters resolutely stick by Trump with their vote?”, I hear my friends say.

It’s one thing to respond “over the issues,” but to put it in slightly more personal terms, I’ve been asking friends and family the last few days this question: “What could Clinton possibly do that would make you stay home, let alone vote for Trump?” (And for the people who say Trump is an exception, just substitute “George W. Bush” and pretend this was your choice.)

The answer so far: not much.

Imagine, for example, the power couple in Netflix’s House of Cards, who make it to the White House through years of murder and deception and scandals suppressed, but who have a sincere commitment to the issues. Imagine that were Hillary and Bill’s story, and it all came out this week: the hints of sinister murders and drug use and conniving. But still, no dent in the chances Hillary nominates a liberal supreme court judge, or pushes for climate change measures, or treats the 11 million illegals in the country in a humane way.

What I want to ask people is: Would you vote Trump, or even stay home and let Trump win in your state? For committed Democrats, I’m betting the crimes would have to be incredibly bad, and the proof incontrovertible. And the social media bubble would have to stick those unpleasant truths in your face rather than sow doubt about the truth or seriousness of any accusations.

Bizarrely, this makes me feel better about my country. You can look at your fellow Americans and not say “what a bunch of deplorables!”, but instead see a group of people who have a deep commitment to a set of principles and issues, and think their chances are better with Trump than Clinton, however much they might dislike him. These are largely people who will vote for Trump despite not because of his worst behaviors and statements. My point is that most Clinton supporters would do the same.

4 thoughts on “There aren’t many times I can say “I haven’t seen this point made in all the Trump coverage” but for me this is one of them

  1. “A democrat looking at the above might expect any self-respecting Republican to distance him or herself from Trump.”

    Considering how Democrats hung with Bill Clinton I would expect a democrat to wonder why so many Republican are distance themselves from Trump.

  2. Chris I wish I could say that Trump supporters have such deep-seated beliefs but I have yet to see any serious policies on key issues come out of the Trump campaign. Sure there is a Republican platform but the candidate does not say anything about that. He has only superficial knowledge of any of the issues that will demand the president’s attention (Syria, income inequality, etc.). So what exactly are these supporters so enamored with other than the “show”?

  3. Lets not give Trump supporters too much credit. The principles they are deeply committed to seem to be xenophobia, racism, and anti-intellectualism. They do not seem to hold any “deep seated beliefs” regarding the role government plays in improving and sustaining communal life. They are a disgruntled minority that has seen a decline in their relative social status and are throwing an enormous tantrum as a result. They don’t care how much they erode the foundational institutions of the country or which social groups are harmed as long as their previous privileged status is restored. There is nothing laudable, commendable, or even “humane” in such a behavior. Standing proudly and defiantly for a corrosive and self-destructive ideology in the face of all evidence and reason is not equivalent to standing firmly for truth and social cohesion. That is the epitome of false equivalence.