In the beginning, they didn't care for Donald Trump.Tavernise argued that Trump's solid support is the result of "moral Bolshevism" among progressives -- for instance, we post "Trump supporters swipe left" on dating sites, which, of course, is just what Stalin would have done. But Enda reminds us that Trump already had solid Republican support on Election Day, before anyone ever saw a demonstrator in a pussy hat. She quotes interviewee after interviewee who was wary of Trump a year ago but likes him now for the simple reason that he's saying and doing things they support:
"Trump's a buffoon," David Searles said before casting a vote for Marco Rubio in the New Hampshire primary.
"He scares me," Rebecca Meyer said before settling on Ben Carson in South Carolina's primary.
"He's not presidential," Gail Francioli said after backing Ohio Gov. John Kasich in that state's primary.
Yet like nearly nine out of 10 Republicans nationwide, Searles, Meyer and Francioli supported Trump in the general election. And like the vast majority of Republicans, they support him still.
"I'm ecstatic! It's a breath of fresh air," Judy Griffin exclaimed when I asked her about the nascent Trump presidency. "The country was going on a near-death experience collision. Political correctness was about to strangle us all." ...Trump attacks the media. How does that resonate with his voters?
Griffin, formerly the director of development for a Christian school, described herself as "very conservative" and "very pro-life." She said she wants Trump to take on ISIS because "you have to confront evil." She also wants him to rebuild the military, reduce the national debt and bring back jobs -- things she criticized former President Barack Obama for failing to do....
[Gail] Francioli offered a substantial list of subjects on which she agrees with Trump. "He's going to increase the military, going to protect this country, build a wall, border control, Obamacare," she said. "He's bringing jobs back." A regular participant in church-led marches outside an abortion clinic, she added that she expects Trump to place further restrictions on the procedure....
[David Searles] favors Trump's push to roll back regulations that Searles said have "stifled" businesses, including the software company that hasn't been stable enough to give him a raise in 10 years.
Internationally, Searles said he is optimistic that the US will "have a stronger presence on the world stage." He appreciates Trump's tough talk.
"I felt that the Obama administration was preoccupied with not offending people..."
Like many Trump supporters, Housel is not troubled by negative news reports about Trump. In fact, she shares his assessment that journalists are not always honest (though she said she felt sheepish about saying that to an actual journalist).Yeah, I could see how a person raised that way might respond to Trump.
"I was raised as a young girl not to trust the media," she said. Housel told me that her father, an Army veteran, offered this cold counsel: "If you're ever in a wartime situation, shoot the guy with the camera and then the enemy."
Enda's interviewees still have a few problems with Trump. But they agree with him on issues. It's not as if they would suddenly reject him if protesters would just lay down their pink hats and picket signs. They want a freeze on immigration from Muslim nations. They want judges picked by the Heritage Foundation. They want what he's promising them.