Monday, September 26, 2016

Plausible Reasons for Trump's Popularity

Alice Russell: As someone sooner or later is bound to say, "Politics makes strange bedfellows."
William Russell: I was hoping it wouldn't be you.
--The Best Man

A popular progressive narrative is that Donald Trump is where he is in the polls primarily because of a 'white riot.' White supremecist racists who do not want to lose their positions of social dominance are banding together and elevating Trump into competitive position in the polls.

Although there may be a group of Trump supporters that fit this demographic, is this the primary reason for Trump's surge? Let's list, as is done here, some plausible rival hypotheses for Trump's popularity:
  • Trump is self-funding his campaign and thus is less subject to manipulation by buyers of political influence.
  • Trump possesses business acumen which many Americans admire. They also suspect it could helpful in the Oval Office.
  • Instead of carefully following a script developed by a group of political handlers, Trump often shoots from the hip. Many people find this refreshing and human.
  • Many Americans see the economy as weakening and want an administration unaffiliated with the party that has governed during this period of economic malaise.
  • Many see Obamacare as deeply flawed and getting worse. Trump has stated that he will fix it, which is attractive to many people.
  • Many Americans are appalled by the degree of media bias in the coverage of the presidential candidates and are causing some to throw their support toward Trump as an expression of procedural justice.
  • Trump is a celebrity in a celebrity culture.
  • Trump's campaign rhetoric has become more inclusive which is attracting a broader group of supporters.
  • People are concerned about safety and are drawn to the candidate with an aggressive position on national security.
To be intellectually honest, those who claim that Trump's success is driven by a group of racists need ask what else could it be? They then need to reasonably refute those plausible rival hypotheses.

By doing so, of course, they risk upsetting the narrative. As such, they are likely to avoid honestly pursuing the truth.

No comments: