During the 2016 election cycle, Donald Trump managed to pull in a lot of diverse voters. Besides the partisan Republican crowd, there were independents who couldn’t see themselves voting for Hillary Clinton, and reportedly, even Democrats, disgusted by the shenanigans that gave them Hillary Clinton as their nominee, rather than Bernie Sanders.
That last group was like the Bizarro World opposites of the NeverTrumper delegates that attempted to stop a Trump nomination on the floor of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, last year.
Whatever the makeup, Trump got the right people voting for him, in the right places, at the right time, and it worked.
Now, however, with the first year of his first term near to completion, it seems the novelty of voting for a wacky chaos candidate may be wearing off, for some.
A recent online focus group of voters from Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Michigan seems to indicate that Trump could lose a chunk of his 2016 supporters, heading into the 2018 election, and well-ahead of his 2020 reelection bid.
That particular chunk would be those who were previously Obama voters, but chose to back Trump in 2016.
It was a former Obama campaign manager, Jim Messina, who put together the focus group.
“The white Obama-Non-Clinton voters we surveyed were clear: If the economy does not improve measurably, they are not going to give Trump a second chance—and they already have a clear reason to explain his failure: Twitter,” Messina explains in a Politico op-ed.
“The members of our focus groups worried that Trump was so pre-occupied with picking Twitter fights and the general chaos of his administration that he was not focusing on making the economy better,” he added.
They’re not the only ones who have expressed concerns over President Trump’s inability to act as if his intellect is at least, to some degree, advanced beyond that of a 13-year old mean girl on social media.
Given the threats and very real concerns our nation faces, we need more than childish name-calling and pouty, juvenile rants from our president.
Messina went on to explain the findings of the group.
“When exposing all voters in the survey to a tough message laying out the consequences of Trump’s tweeting—how it signals what he really cares about and prevents him from focusing his energy on making good on his promises to improve people’s lives—we found that the overall rating of Trump’s handling of the economy dropped by 6 points,” Messina wrote.
Calling an enemy leader “Little rocket man” or “short and fat” on Twitter isn’t a confidence booster. Who knew?
“Perhaps even more interesting is that when we re-surveyed Obama-non-Clinton voters six weeks later, those who’d been exposed to the tweeting message had a much dimmer view of Trump than those exposed to other messages,” he added.
Messina went on to point out that what has worked before, won’t always be the case.
“It’s true that Donald Trump is unlike any politician we have seen in a long time. Things that pundits say should sink him do not. He has thus far managed to rebound from even the most vile behavior,” he concludes.
“But voters are only willing to go along with that so far.”
Yes, like the pet rock, jelly shoes, and troll dolls, the novelty of just letting some crazy, loudmouthed reality TV huckster run the nation will wear off, if there isn’t any real substance behind him.
Then again, I know people still wearing Crocs, for some bizarre reason. Nothing strikes me as impossible, anymore.