Trump Is Losing The Walmart Vote, Isn't That A Shame
Turns out if you venture past that one bar in rural Pennsylvania where all the reporters like to meet Real Muricans, Donald Trump's voters are getting tired of his bullshit. Because when they voted to Make America Great Again, they didn't actually mean Make Hundreds of Thousands of People Show Up For Work Without Pay. Go know!
Last week, The Washington Post's Matt Viser took a field trip to a Michigan Walmart, where he met Jeff Daudert, a middle-aged white guy suffering buyer's remorse over his 2016 vote for Trump in light of the shutdown.
"What the [expletive] were we thinking?" he asked the other night inside a Walmart here, in an area of blue-collar suburban Detroit that helped deliver Trump the presidency. [...] "It's silly. It's destructive," Daudert said, adding that all he knows about 2020 is that he won't be supporting Trump. "I was certainly for the anti-status quo. … I'll be more status quo next time."
What the expletive, indeed.
Viser reports the community is trying to make life a little less shitty for government workers going without a paycheck, offering free yoga classes, trampoline bouncing, and food drives. Because deep down, Americans really do care ... about people in their own community who look just like them. It's like that nice lady from Florida told the New York Times, "He's not hurting the people he needs to be hurting."
Back in the coverall aisle of that Michigan Walmart (subtle!), the Post reporters found Jeremiah Wilburn, an Obama-Trump voter who's starting to suspect that Trump might not give a shit about working class voters after all. Shocking!
"I was doing fine with him up until this government shutdown," he said. "It's ridiculous. You're not getting the wall built for $5 billion. And Mexico is not paying for it, we all know that, too. Meanwhile, it's starting to turn people like me away."
He worries about the impact the shutdown will have on the economy. He's concerned about the impact on his brother, who works for the TSA in Florida.
To him, the shutdown standoff has also poked holes in Trump's ability to say that he cares for the working class, given that 800,000 federal employees and additional contractors going without a paycheck.
"You can't expect people to come to work without getting paid," Wilburn said. "If I were them, I certainly wouldn't come to work."
Yeah, if Mexico is paying for it, why do 800,000 people "gotta go to fuckin' work without getting motherfuckin' paid"?
Apparently the damage isn't confined to the suburban Michigan Walmarts. In a Marist poll taken 10 days ago -- when the shutdown was less than a month old -- 22 percent of Republicans and a whopping 64 percent of independents viewed Trump more negatively because of it. As the shutdown ticks on, even Trump's base is starting to wonder if I ALONE CAN FIX IT might have been a slight exaggeration. Wanna draw us a picture of Trump's approval rating, FiveThirtyEight?
Trump's conundrum can best be defined by chatting up the patrons of a Michigan Kroger a few miles from the Canadian border:
In the cereal aisle, Henry Black, a 69-year-old who spent his career at General Motors, voted for Trump, likes what the president has done and had a dire warning for him if he shifts course on the border wall.
"Trump needs to stand firm on this," he said. "If he gives in to the Democrats on this, he's finished."
Or else we'll be overrun with damn, dirty Canadians seeking freedom from the twin scourges of health insurance and decent public education, said no Trump supporter ever.
None of this had to happen. If he had the balls to weather one bad news cycle from Limbaugh and Coulter, Trump could easily have punted and signed the temporary funding bill without wall money like he said he would. Instead he summoned the press to announce that he'd be "proud to shut down the government." So now if he doesn't wrest WALLBUX from Democrats to put up a few miles of fencing that he promised Mexico was going to pay for, Trump's base will be pissed. The entire country is being held hostage by a guy who couldn't negotiate his way out of a paper bag.
So how are we going to get out of this one, Cletus?
Ken Janicki, a 66-year-old retired technology worker who voted for Trump, sipped on his coffee the other day and put it in blunt terms.
"I am all for border security, a full wall around this country," he said. "You come in legally, I'll welcome you to be my neighbor. But you come in illegally and I'll introduce you to my friend Smith and my other friend Wesson."
Yeah, yeah, we know. NOT ALL TRUMP SUPPORTERS. But a whole freaking lot of 'em!
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Liz Dye lives in Baltimore with her wonderful husband and a houseful of teenagers. When she isn't being mad about a thing on the internet, she's hiding in plain sight in the carpool line. She's the one wearing yoga pants glaring at her phone.