If there is one thing I have taken away from this entire election it is that Americans feel disenfranchised, unhappy, and want somewhere to point the blame. What both Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders campaigns had in common is the core feeling of rebellion against the establishment and the hope that each of them gave to specific groups of voters in our country who perhaps have never rallied behind a candidate quite like this.
I, personally, fell in love with Bernie Sanders. As a young woman, a millennial, I saw him as the one glimmer of hope that our country could in fact become great not just for the top percentage of wealth, but for all. A man who didn’t give one fuck what any government official, pundit, any member of Wall Street, Big Pharma, or corporate greed thought of him and has always been true to his word. But I digress. Unfortunately the dream of him as my president was cut short in the primaries, but his ideals and vision for a better America are still in the hearts of millions of people. I’m happy that his influence carried over to the Clinton campaign and forced her to become more progressive in her policies.
What Donald Trump has done is not just tap into people’s fear, hatred, bigotry, and xenophobia (and the list goes on), but he has also truly been able to reach the workers and middle-class of this country in a way that Hillary was never able to. I’m not sure whether this group of very dissatisfied workers is able to completely ignore the hatred that spews from Trump’s mouth, but it is certain that their number one concern is the jobs that they have lost over the last eight years, the money in their wallet, and their personal livelihood. They’re not wrong. If you too have a family to support, have lost a job, or don’t know when your next paycheck will be you might be scared and pissed off too. Trump was that glimmer of hope for these Americans who hung on every word from this political outsider regarding the creation of more jobs, the abolishment of free trade, “taking back” our workforce by tightening immigration and deporting illegals, growing our economy, restoring national security, and working to clear our government from corruption. Now, how he promises to actually DO these things is arguably concerning for more than half of Americans, but again this all relates to disenfranchisement. Trump gave these voters a reason to go to the polls and a reason to support his candidacy that certainly no pollster saw coming on November 8th.
Do I want Trump to be my president? Fuck no. Do I support his policies? Fuck no. But there are over fifty-nine million Americans who saw him as their only option.
If you want to know what Trump plans to do his first 100 days in office, you can view the details here.
If you want to read the timeline of voter rights throughout American history, please check out When Was America Great?