Muftic: Voter motivation 2016 style. Stop_________. You fill in the blank
May 19, 2016
Given the polling showing unfavorable views of Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton (slightly less so than Trump) this election is not going to be about voters choosing the better person, but making fear of the other side as their motivation to turn out and vote.
What is certain is the uncertainty. Hillary Clinton has never faced a candidate like Trump who has so few scruples and whose issue positions are moving targets. Clinton needs to assume it will be a close race and run like it. Will there be enough increase in Hispanic and women's votes against Trump to offset the electoral votes of white males in the rust belt? Democrats have shown less intensity and turnout than Republicans, even taking into consideration the great Bernie Sanders' rallies.
The exception will be Hispanic turnout in key states where they have enough numbers to swing a close election and deliver enough electoral votes to make a difference. This is a traditionally low turnout demographic, but there Is nothing like Trump's comments about undocumented, "deport 'em, call them rapists, and" build the wall", to increase their number of voters who will view him as hostile to their interests as a group and to break up families containing mixed status members. Trump's cozying up to white supremacists groups will be more than enough to get out the African-American vote. To what extent suburban women will be able to offset white male blue collar voters in the rust belt is seen as a possible plus for Democrats.
Trump's supporters are angry at both their party establishment and the Democrats they feel who have contributed to their misery because were left out of a less than vigorous economic recovery from the Great Recession. The anger factor has reached the level of irrationality. Anger is not a public policy nor, does it seem, do the angry consider negative or self-defeating fallout of any of the "suggestions" Trump promotes. Trump and his followers simply ignore warnings of negative consequences of a very dangerous foreign policy, retaliatory trade wars endangering jobs of eleven million more workers employed in export industries, their candidate needing a steep learning curve in foreign affairs to be ready to be commander in chief on day one without committing a blunder, and insensitively dividing the country into blocks of haters.
The angry are also the supporters of Bernie Sanders, and he also appeals to large numbers who are likewise fed up with politics as usual. Instead of solely promoting his solutions, Sanders has also continued negative attacks on Clinton, tying her to Wall Street, and hitting her judgment, that are now serving as the talking points Donald Trump is using to attack Clinton. While Sanders admits it is a "hard" path to win the nomination, even with prospects of winning Oregon and Kentucky, he is helping blow one of the greatest chances for a Democratic victory not seen in years. . His redemption will be to convince his supporters that they should oppose Trump over their dead bodies as well as his, and do it with the same enthusiasm and turnout as they did in the primary season.
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