The last national election was notable. Controversial. Emotionally-charged. Divisive. And no doubt it was full of diverse, strong opinion. The strong opinions continue via the impeachment debate. What’s become increasingly clear to me is that we don’t all think alike. The Intramuralist is actually thankful we don’t all think alike. Yet a current, significant, societal struggle is the obvious distrust and even dislike for that diverse, strong opinion. There is denigration. Insult. Judgment. And cutting off. What if we could instead pause long enough to listen and understand? And to actually dialogue? Wouldn’t it be wiser to comprehend why another thinks the way they do? Wouldn’t it be helpful in the path toward authentic solution?
The following is a submission respectfully sent by Z; the Intramuralist welcomes the review of respectful submissions. Note that Z is an intelligent, humankind-loving, charitable adult. He is not racist, sexist, nor any other perceived, negative “ist.” Z also believes he represents the perspective of the average Trump voter. Here are his words…
“Now that the dust has settled from the House impeachment debates, I have had the chance to reflect. After listening to the disputes in the chambers that December night — and listening to continued weeks of politicians and pundits chiming in — the arguments have become cyclical and redundant from both sides. Polls demonstrate that American adults are split down the middle on impeachment. A recent, liberal-slanted media poll shared that 48% support it and 48% oppose; unsurprisingly, 89.8% of Republicans oppose the efforts and 82.7% of Democrats are in support. Meanwhile, Trump’s overall approval rating has risen by at least six points, and support among independent voters has increased by eight points since the proceedings began, which would seem a conundrum if the President was indisputably guilty of a criminal offense or high crime and misdemeanor.
The Democrats’ hopes to build increased public support for Trump’s impeachment have been unsuccessful, and as one of the President’s supporters, allow me to be a sincere, honest tour guide through the mind of the post-impeachment Trump voter and to articulate why the President continues to receive unwavering, increasing support from his base despite the charges imposed against him. It begins with the fact that the average Trump voter has become disenfranchised.
I guest-wrote on this blog two years ago, a forum that so wisely promotes productive dialogue in a civilized manner, but had my Christian faith questioned by people who have never met me, don’t know me or my name, all because I admitted to voting for Trump in the 2016 election. I cannot recall how many times that my character as a human being has been questioned because Trump has made sexually inappropriate comments toward women. Am I excusing it? No. Did I base my vote on it? Of course not. Why? If I did, the system would not work. Are each of us aware that both parties of Congress utilize a multi-million dollar fund, subsidized by taxpayer dollars, that pays off congressional staff members who accuse members of Congress of improper sexual advances or harassment? If our prerequisite for a candidate is that they must have a skeleton-free closet, then we best stop voting, as the chances we have voted for someone who has made inappropriate sexual remarks during their political career are high. Another’s opposition to Trump, therefore, does not authorize nor allow judgment of my personal character.
Please read what follows with sincerity and care, for this is insight into the root of our country’s divide from the perspective of what I believe is the average Trump voter. For three years, they have been judged, had their identities excoriated, called ‘deplorable’ (and worse), primarily because of their support for Donald Trump as an elected official. Through social media, public protests, and cable news networks, his supporters are routinely labeled as hate-filled bigots whose thoughts and opinions are unwelcome because they do not wholly represent mainstream American values. When a fringe white supremacist organization, for example, expresses support for the President, his entire voter base is often labeled as racist. They’ve been repeatedly, physically beaten simply for wearing a hat that contains his campaign slogan. As a result of such personal — and frankly, painfully dehumanizing attacks on their character and person, inspired solely by a difference in political philosophy — his voter base has become increasingly, unforgivingly defensive. Here is what Trump’s voter base sees: an attack on him is an attack on them.
Are we surprised, then, in this volatile atmosphere, that there is no bipartisan support for impeachment? One would think a charge that accuses the President of using public American finances to solicit assistance from a foreign leader for personal, political gain would strike anger in our hearts. However, to many voters, this notion cannot be proven based on the presented evidence. Two things did happen: 1) Trump asked Ukraine’s president for a favor, and 2) Trump withheld military assistance. The problem is that the only link between these two is a ‘presumption’ by America’s ambassador to the European Union, Gordon Sondland, that the aid was tied to the request. That’s it. Additionally, nearly all, perceived substantiative testimony before the House Judiciary Committee was based on opinion and hearsay, which by rule, the Senate would not allow. Constitutional expert and admitted Trump detester, Clinton donor, and far-left judge (as quoted by the NY Times in 2009), Pamela Karlan sat before Congress and, literally put words in Pres. Trump’s mouth when she analyzed what he meant by ‘do us a favor.’ The second impeachment charge of obstruction of Congress can be arguably negated by Trump’s assertion of executive privilege, but congressional Democrats intentionally chose not to challenge in court. Here is what Trump’s voter base sees: impeachment charges based on bias and hearsay by a party that has a documented hatred for Pres. Trump’s administration and his voters.
Were this not frustrating enough for Trump’s supporters, congressional Democrat’s political duplicity has been farcical. Since the commencement of the impeachment process, many Democrat leaders have publicly expressed utter sadness at the need to conduct these proceedings. This claim seems wholly untrue. Paul Begala, a CNN political commentator and former Clinton advisor, recently boasted about meeting with Speaker Nancy Pelosi in the days immediately following the 2018 election, about the most beneficial time to pursue impeaching Trump. The House has also offered previous, failed articles for impeachment multiple times, and Democrat Representatives Al Green, Rashida Tlaib, and Maxine Waters have each made impeachment a promise to their constituents long before the Ukraine activity. Adam Schiff, chair of the House Intelligence Committee, conducted closed-door interrogations for approximately four weeks after the start of the official inquiry, releasing only snippets of politically-advantageous testimony. A bipartisan process has also been hindered by refusing and restricting numerous Republican inquiries and witnesses. Here is what Trump’s voter base sees: Congressional Democrats’ display of extreme political disingenuousness by masking their contempt for Trump behind the façade of constitutional responsibility.
As for me, I am a Libertarian who does not particularly care for Donald Trump, yet voted for him in 2016. But I find myself being swallowed up by the widening chasm, and now, with all due respect — I am angry. I have tried to sincerely and graciously engage those in opposition, and yet, so many demonstrate no regard for a dialogue that accepts how others perceive something; so many instead personally attack my character, values, and faith for casting a vote in favor of a candidate that I thought would help Americans prosper. I have been pushed too far. We are not divided because of our inability to talk about things, but because one side has vilified the other. When we corner an animal, it will do two things: fight back and remember who cornered it.
I will be voting again for Trump in 2020 — no matter what. If, by some wonder, the Senate votes to remove him from office, I will write his name in on the ballot so that the very American democratic process that has been unjustly weaponized against its President, and his voters, can record my vote but not have it.
This is what Trump’s base is feeling.”