Republican Voters Won’t Turn On Trump Until His Policies Personally Affect Them

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Caitlyn Jenner just realized the Republican party is anti-LGBTQ (US Mission to the UN)

Americans go off to the polls today, it’s important to understand what motivates Republican voters. I got an insight into this from a conversation with a close family member who is an investor and has many friends who are Republican voters. He said this has made business meetings difficult because they often praise Trump. My cousin said he has told them the only way they’re going to get through the meeting is if they refrain from talking about politics.

But, from associating with his business partners my cousin has learned what makes Trump supporters tick. They love Trump because he’s putting money in their pockets. Their stocks are up, and that’s all they care about. Trump’s anti-immigrant rhetoric, his war with the media, his encouragement of racial extremists, his incompetence and his mismanagement of government funds, mean nothing to them. All they care about is their financial status. In a nutshell, Republicans are selfish. They’re the party of me.

There is plenty of evidence to back this up. Michael Moore once wrote that he wished top Republicans would get AIDS, so they would start funding research into the disease. He pointed out that former first lady Nancy Reagan only started caring about Alzheimer’s after her husband former President Ronald Reagan got the disease.

This morning I saw a BBC report featuring an Arizona Republican who said he was a hard-core conservative — until he got throat cancer and realized the benefits of Obamacare. Another great example of a Republican being shaken out of their bubble is Caitlyn Jenner. Jenner transitioned from male-to-female, and suddenly realized that the GOP was hostile to the LGBTQ community.

“Sadly, I was wrong,” said Jenner in a Washington Post column. “The reality is that the trans community is being relentlessly attacked by this president.”

When she lived as a wealthy, white man, Jenner had all the benefits of being in the “in group,” but once she transitioned, she realized what it was like to be a despised minority. In short, the struggle of LBGTQ people became personal to her.

The midterm elections may depend on how many Americans feel the pain of Trump’s presidency. People of color, immigrants and Jews have already seen that he is a threat. Hate crimes are up and Trump-activated domestic terrorists have already targeted them in attacks in Pittsburgh and Kentucky.

But while wealthy Americans love Trump because of their economic gains, Republicans have to rely on propaganda, led by State TV aka FOX News, to brainwash blue-collar voters into supporting them. And this seems to be working. You can see this in the comments from Trump voters outside rallies. They repeat whatever the president says, no matter how inaccurate it is. Trump voters seem to be impervious to the truth. Their brains have been pickled in a stew of Breitbart, AM radio and FOX News.

Working-class Americans should also be mad at Trump because his tax cuts have not led to the economic gains he promised. The tax cuts benefited wealthy people, and companies used their tax breaks to do stock buybacks and put more money in their pockets. According to former Labor Secretary Robert Reich, 84 percent of the stock market is owned by the richest 10 percent of Americans. So most Americans aren’t benefiting from Wall Street’s gains.

However, the cost of living is still rising and many Americans are working two or three jobs to get bye. According to a NPR/Marist poll, one in five jobs is is contract work, which provides no health or retirement benefits. And healthcare is still a disaster and college education is still through the roof. Working-class American should be mad.

But while some wealthy Americans love Trump because of their economic gains, Republicans have to rely on propaganda, led by State TV aka FOX News, to brainwash blue-collar voters into supporting them.

And this seems to be working. You can see this in the comments from Trump voters outside rallies. They repeat whatever the president says, no matter how inaccurate it is. Trump voters seem to be impervious to the truth. Their brains have been pickled in a stew of Breitbart, AM radio and FOX News. Consider this quote from a VICE story about young Trump supporters.

“Jessica Clay, a 16-year-old from Moberly, walked proudly down the road before the rally began with an umbrella and a red ‘Make America Great Again’ hat in tow to keep the rain away … ‘I will not step down from my beliefs,’ said Clay, who came with her grandma and younger sister. She credits her family, who listens to Fox News every morning, as the foundation for her values,” wrote Tessa Weinburg.

According to a Huffington Post article, Trump supporters have a disturbing habit of stubbornly defending his lies.

One supporter said “she was not interested in whether or how many times Trump might lie that evening. ‘I don’t care if he sprouts a third dick up there,’” according to S.V. Date.

When people are this deep in the right-wing bubble, it might take more economic pain to get through to through to them.

Written by

Manny Otiko writes about race, politics and sports. He has been published in Salon and LA Weekly. Follow him on Twitter @mannyotiko.

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