Over the last few days, informative articles have begun to appear in newspapers, on-line magazines and political forums having to do with the results of the polling of self-identified Trump voters. The polling, conducted on February 7th and 8th by Public Policy Polling, involved 712 individuals who were contacted via their land-lines (80%) or through an Internet survey. They responded to seven questions with either an “agree” or “disagree” judgment. Results came with a +/- 3.7% margin of error., and are presented next along with commentary.
President Trump is more credible than the New York Times
Eighty-two percent agreed in spite of Trump’s almost two-year-long history of serial lying. When a periodical like the Times makes a mistake, an erratum is typically published in a subsequent issue. Trump never self-corrects, at least not publicly. Rather, his M.O. is to either double-down or deflect to another topic.
In the last election, million voted illegally
On this question, there was 55% agreement, never mind that not a shred of credible evidence has been presented to support this claim which Trump has made repeatedly. It is becoming increasingly apparent that there are at least some of his voters who never question his assertions, and live, unperturbed, in an evidence-free bubble.
The “Bowling Green massacre” (1) is why we need President Trump’s immigration reform
Peg the “agree” percentage here at 51%, even though the “massacre” story has been repeatedly debunked publicly. This is just another manifestation of how willing some Trump voters are to live in an evidence-free environment.
There should be a “White History” month
An “agree” response was registered by 46% even though every child in the US that gets a public education is exposed to “White history”. We might suppose that the 46% represents a backlash against “Black History” month and other forms of recognition that have been bestowed upon various minority groups and individuals whose accomplishments have been short-changed in our school history books.
President Trump should ban all Muslims from entering our country
This hard-line approach to immigration was agreed upon by 41% of respondents. It would have been interesting to see what sorts of responses would have been evoked by follow-up questions that referenced American-Muslims, or Muslims who had worked for our military in the Middle East.
We should invade Mexico
Fortunately, only 14% of respondents agreed with this notion. Calling it “idiotic” is all the commentary that is needed here.
President Trump should be able to overturn court rulings
Stunningly, 51% of voters agreed with this statement even though it flies squarely in the face of Constitutional limits on such behavior by any president.
If there is one thread that runs through all the “agree” scores, it is a devotion to authoritarianism, especially as it is exemplified by President Trump, with his brash, no-holds-barred style. It would seem that there is a sizeable bloc of Trump voters who would abandon our system of government if given the choice between that and a dictator who they believed would remedy the major sources of woe in their lives. His statements are taken at face value, lies issued in his support are uncritically embraced, contradictory facts and evidence are dismissed out of hand, and all for the purpose of sustaining the faith that a “savior” has arrived.
This is both scary and dangerous.
- If you are unfamiliar with the story about the “Bowling Green (KY) massacre” it is essentially this: various unreliable conservative sites published a story about how two Muslims went on a murderous rampage that was then badly under-reported by the mainstream media. Trump surrogate, Kelleyanne Conway took this story and promoted it on three different televised political talk shows. The “massacre” never happened as has now been carefully documented. Confronted with this fact, Conway never apologized; choosing to only allow that her lie was really just a miscommunication; a product of her choice of a few inappropriate words.