Jim Crawford: Trump does not act in his voters’ interests
Donald Trump’s victory in 2016 was a surprise, even to Donald Trump.
Should he be re-elected it may not be a surprise to his supporters, but it will be a surprise to a majority of Americans and to the rest of the Western democracies.
But Trump supporters had a point to make; America is broken and, so far at least, it seems unfixable. For many who voted for Trump in 2016, it was that belief, that our broken form of government seems immune to regular Americans needs, so why not throw a cog in the gears and see what happens?
Objectively, Trump “the cog,” has been a less-than-successful experiment. Yes, he is bold and brash, and his outrageousness remains appealing to many who felt the country needed a metaphysical face slap, but his ability to make America great has fallen far short.
Yet, for many Trump supporters, that failure, the mismanaged pandemic, the staggering unemployment, the indifference to racial inequality, and the intentional stimulation of division among Americans, is largely ignored in favor of other concerns.
Trump speaks for their heartfelt concerns. He hates protesters, loves police; he does not ignore his political enemies, he punishes them whenever possible as a strong leader; he talks of turning back the clock to bygone days of simpler times. He is the president of rhetoric, the speaker of the rough and ugly themes that some want to hear and have spoken aloud, the barroom brawler who speaks hard truth.
You may like that, the outrageous Trump character, enough to support Trump again in 2020, but the price you will pay is too high.
Trump may talk your language, but he acts for himself always. He engineered a tax cut that was pennies for you and buckets of cash for guys like, well, him.
He wants to kill Obamacare for 23 million Americans, replace it with nothing, and never look back; he can afford to pay for his health care.
Trump does not care if your small community hospital closes, your neighborhood school is lost to the economy. Like the “losers” and “suckers” who were silly enough to serve the nation in our military, none of this affects the bone spur president personally.
Trump wants to protect the stock market at all costs, where he and folks like him in the top 10 percent make a lot of money doing nothing to earn their rewards and increase their wealth. But, for your jobs as coal miners, he has nothing but useless words as those jobs disappear. For your lost jobs in the service industry, to this president, you are invisible.
If your unemployment in this worldwide pandemic ended or is so small it does not protect you from eviction, Trump and his Republican friends will let you eat cake, but will help you not at all.
If you are a Midwest farmer you know you are losing the tariff battle with China, and possibly your farm, while your president tweets about his petty attacks on anyone who criticizes him.
Yes, our political system is broken and it desperately needs to be fixed. The single fact that the Republican Senate allowed unemployment extended benefits to simply expire reveals how deeply the break is. Our politicians, some if not many, are no longer listening to you.
The system is rigged alright, rigged to empower inequality, to benefit the richest Americans at the expense of everyone else. It must be changed.
But Donald Trump is not the answer, he never was. He is the grifter telling you that snake oil is healing, that detergent is the solution for the coronavirus, and that his twitter account is not really just the “squirrel” distracting your puppy.
Jim Crawford is a retired educator and political enthusiast living here in the Tri-State.