Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Meet The President Of A Rapidly Shrinking Political Base

Donald Trump equated white supremacists and neo-nazi's with demonstrators who opposed their torch lit march in Virginia.  He claimed that these groups were equally guilty of the ensuing violence. For some reason he referred to those who opposed the torch lit march "the far left". The implication is that citizens who oppose white nationalism and neo-nazi's are left wing extremists.  In other words, people who did not vote for him in the election.  His political base includes white supremacists and neo-nazi's.  Trump did not praise them, but their leaders were pleased that he argued that taking down the statue of Robert E. Lee, who led a war against the national government,  was on par with the founders of our country because they also owned slaves.  He asked whether monuments to Washington and Jefferson should also be taken down.  Those were encouraging words for less extreme voters in confederate states who oppose taking down monuments of confederate military heroes.  They are a far bigger part of Trump's base.

Trump's response to the violence in Virginia is consistent with much of his behavior since he won the election.  He cannot tolerate personal criticism and he constantly pursues opportunities to win approval.  He has held "campaign rallies" exclusively in red states since his election.  They respond to the slogans that he used in his election campaign with predictable cheers.  He avoids states that did no vote for him in the general election.  Unfortunately for Trump, his base is shrinking.  A recent poll shows that his approval rating has fallen to 34%.  A growing percentage of Republicans no longer approve of his performance in office.  There are almost as many Independents in the US as there are members of either political party.  His support from Independents has fallen into the mid 20's.  Trump's efforts to appeal exclusively to his shrinking base is a doomed strategy.  It is not good for him or his political party.  It is also bad for the rest of our nation.  It will continue to drive him into extreme positions in order to satisfy his need for approval and his intolerance of critcism.

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