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Donald Trump’s Supporters Are Poorly Paid, Distrustful and Convinced They’re Anything but Racist

Posted on Jan 8, 2016

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. (Gage Skidmore / CC BY 2.0)

Donald Trump is leading in voter support in the Republican presidential primary race because he appeals to a statistically significant bloc of frustrated whites who “reject the stories offered to them” by established sources “and admire leaders who do the same,” Mona Chalabi of The Guardian writes.

She continues:

White Americans feel more angry than black Americans, according to a November survey of 3,257 US adults by Esquire and NBC. White people were more likely than black people to say their current financial situation isn’t what they thought it would be when they were younger, and they were also more likely to put that down to difficult circumstances rather than “wrong choices”.

When asked whether they ever hear or read anything on the news that makes them angry, white respondents were more likely than black ones to say they felt angry at least twice a day. There were gender differences too – men were more likely than women to say that they felt angry about the treatment of white men. …

... [T]he history of American politicians is the history of many, many white men, but there’s something unique about Trump’s whiteness and his masculinity. He is distinctly unashamed of either trait, and is unwilling to even pay lip service to the notion that they were beneficial to his success. In a 1989 NBC interview, for example, he made his point:

A well-educated black has a tremendous advantage over a well-educated white in terms of the job market. I think sometimes a black may think they don’t have an advantage or this and that … I’ve said on one occasion, even about myself, if I were starting off today, I would love to be a well-educated black, because I believe they do have an actual advantage.

Liberals may respond with rolled eyes or outrage, but for [his supporters], quotes like these are evidence that Trump is simply willing to state facts others are too cowardly to say. [A supporter] still probably wouldn’t think of himself as racist – 10% of white Americans think white Americans are racist. But 38% of those white Americans think black people are racist. …

A 2014 study from Pew Research Center shows just how divided Americans are about the media. Liberals express trust in more media organizations than conservatives do, and receive more sources and perspectives as a consequence. Of 36 organizations listed, Fox News stands out as the crucial source to 88% of conservatives who say that they trust the information they receive from the channel.

Continue reading here.

—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.

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