Exit poll data proves it: Trump is the candidate of voters who resent African-Americans and immigrants – –
Donald Trump wants more things for “us” and fewer things for “them.” The question then becomes, who gets to define and enforce those boundaries of political community.
The Republicans in the New Hampshire primary responded to Trump’s message with overwhelmingly support—he won with 35 percent of the vote.
As reported by CNN, exit polling data in New Hampshire shows the reach of Donald Trump’s appeal to Republican voters:
Exit poll results from the New Hampshire primary on Tuesday night showed deep discontent with the Republican Party and the federal government, and the candidate who railed hardest on those topics, Donald Trump, won with multiple groups of voters.
Trump won New Hampshire’s primary by carrying a range of demographic and ideological groups with more than 30% of the vote. He topped the rest of the field among both men and women, voters under age 64, voters without a college degree, and those who have a college degree but no postgraduate study.
He won among conservatives and moderates, first-time voters and those who’ve voted before and registered Republicans and those who are undeclared.
Trump won 6-in-10 voters who said they were looking for an outside candidate.
ABC highlighted the following important fact about Donald Trump’s base of support in New Hampshire:
Two-thirds said they support Trump’s proposal to temporarily ban Muslims from entering the country. He won 42 percent of their votes.
Four in 10 supported deporting undocumented immigrants; Trump won 46 percent in this group.
Exit polling data in New Hampshire complements the recent findings by the Rand Corp.’s Presidential Election Panel Survey (PEPS). Political scientist Michael Tesler (one of the researchers who conducted the survey) described its findings:
The PEPS follows prior research and measures resentment toward African Americans and immigrants with statements like “blacks could be just as well off as whites if they only tried harder” and “it bothers me when I come in contact with immigrants who speak little or no English.” It also contains a measure of ethnocentrism developed by Donald Kinder and Cindy Kam, which compares how favorably respondents rated whites to how favorably they rated minority groups. …
Most striking is how each of these measures strongly correlates with support for Trump. The graph below shows that Trump performs best among Americans who express more resentment toward African Americans and immigrants and who tend to evaluate whites more favorably than minority groups.
Moreover, statistical models show that each of these three attitudes about minorities contributes independently to Trump’s vote share. So much so, in fact, that GOP primary voters who score in the top 25 percent of their party on all three measures are 44 points more likely to support Donald Trump than those who score in the bottom 25 percent…
… These findings also support the idea that Trump’s appeal mirrors Nixonian populism’s blend of racial conservatism with tacit support for the welfare state — a blend often seen in Europe’s right-wing populist parties as well asthe presidential bid of George Wallace.
Donald Trump’s popularity is vexing to Republican elites (and the mainstream corporate news media) because he combines the nativism, racism, pro-big business attitude, wants more tax cuts for the wealthy, militaristic nationalism, and out-group animosity that typifies mainstream conservatism, with promises to expand healthcare, enact trade protectionism, fix the nation’s infrastructure, and improve the lives of the (white) working class.
Donald Trump’s particular version of right-wing populism is a direct threat to present day Republican orthodoxy. However, “Trumpania” is not a new phenomenon. Donald Trump’s political vision is simply a 21st century version of what sociologists, historians, and others have described as right-wing producerism.
Producerism is a belief that society is divided between “makers” and “takers.” Right-wing producerism tries to mobilize “real citizens” against “evil” parasites on the “bottom” of society such as the poor, people of color, immigrants, gays and lesbians, “the lazy” and any other subordinate group that can be identified as the Other.
Producerism also targets the enemies above, i.e., corporations, Wall Street, international bankers and finance, political “insiders,” government “bureaucrats” or “elites” who are imagined as working against the interests of “the people.”
As explained by Chip Berlet and Matthew N. Lyons in their book “Right-Wing Populism in America: Too Close for Comfort,” “producerism, with its baggage of prejudice, remains today the most common populist narrative on the right, and it facilitates the use of demonization and scapegoating as political tools.”
In addition to right-wing producerism, Donald Trump is also channeling Herrenvolk ideology with his explicit promises to protect the white working and middle class from “those people” (be they supposedly rapine and violent immigrants; scheming Chinese; or nebulous brown Muslim terrorists in ISIS and al-Qaida) while also ensuring that there is a social welfare state, economic mobility and expanded healthcare for “real Americans.”