Donald Trump

Trump Supporters Rage Against the Present

Opponents of immigration are out of step, but they won't give up.

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Donald Trump rally
Credit: Darron Birgenheier / photo on flickr

Sure, Donald Trump has the support of David Duke. But the membership of the Ku Klux Klan is small. So anyone hoping to understand Trump's electoral appeal must assume it goes beyond those whose favorite pastime is burning crosses. 

Rep. Chris Collins, R-N.Y., recently explained why he endorsed the GOP front-runner. "I come from an interesting rural county with a lot of Rust Belt union folks, and Donald Trump is truly resonating through western New York," he told The New York Times. "It starts first and foremost with the leader who is going to make our borders safe again." 

His district is actually on the border—the border with Canada. But that's not the one Trump wants to secure with an impenetrable wall. Collins' constituents are about as far as you can get from the Rio Grande, and they have not been overrun by Mexican immigrants, legal or otherwise. Hispanics of all types make up just 2.6 percent of the population there. 

Trump's ability to inflame such passions in so many places is puzzling because the number of foreigners coming here illegally has been declining. The number living in the United States is down by nearly 1 million from the 2007 peak. The volume of apprehensions by the Border Patrol along the border with Mexico has plunged. 

Fear of terrorism has something to do with this urge to seal off the southern border. Republican presidential candidates have raised the terrifying specter of Islamic State terrorists sneaking into the country from Mexico. 

None of them mentions that the 9/11 hijackers came here legally. Nor does anyone seem to recall that in 2011, the head of Customs and Border Protection said, "We have had more cases where people who are suspected of alliances with terrorist organizations or have had a terrorist suspicion in their background—we see more people crossing over from Canada than we have from Mexico." 

Oddly, Trump pays no attention to our northern frontier. Something about Canada just doesn't frighten people—even people who can see Toronto from their homes—the way Mexico does. 

Trump is fond of saying that the southern border is so porous as to be no border at all. "If we don't have a border, we don't have a country," he asserts. 

As a matter of history, he couldn't be more wrong. "The Mexico-U.S. border remained little more than a line on a map, entirely unguarded by federal authorities until 1924, when the U.S. Border Patrol was established," writes Princeton sociologist Douglas Massey. Ronald Reagan, the hero of every Republican, envisioned a North America without border controls. 

It's not just illegal immigration that alarms Trump fans. Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., who endorsed him this week, favors a reduction in legal immigration. So does the Federation for American Immigration Reform, which has praised Trump's immigration plan. "I'm opposed to new people coming in," he said in 1999. 

Racial prejudice undoubtedly motivates many of his supporters. One thing Mexicans and Central Americans sneaking over the southern border usually have in common with Middle Eastern refugees is a dusky complexion. 

That doesn't win them points with the 70 percent of Trump voters in South Carolina who think the Confederate flag should still be flying at the state Capitol or the 16 percent who believe "whites are a superior race." 

UCLA political scientist Lynn Vavreck has documented that many of his supporters are "people who are responsive to religious, social and racial intolerance." Latinos and Muslims get the blunt end of their response. 

It clearly infuriates those drawn to Trump that they have repeatedly failed to get their way on the issues they are passionate about. Most Americans, polls show, are in favor of giving unauthorized immigrants a path to citizenship. Most think immigrants strengthen America. Most want to let those brought here illegally as children gain legal status. Most are fine with the country's becoming browner and more culturally diverse. 

On these and other matters, Trump's supporters have been losing, year in and year out. That's not the fault of corrupt Washington insiders or cowardly politicians or weak leadership. They have been losing because the majority of Americans have considered their views and rejected them. 

The fantasy Trump holds out to his followers is that despite being out of step with the majority of their fellow Americans, they can dismantle all the changes they detest. Win or lose, they're in for a disappointment.

© Copyright 2016 by Creators Syndicate Inc. 

NEXT: Hillary Clinton's False Hopes

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  1. The fantasy that Trump holds out to his supporters is war, and it really doesn’t matter if it’s a race war or a religious war or a war against illegal immigrants. But it’s why he can’t disavow David Duke or the KKK – it will disappoint his most ardent followers who bring so much energy to his candidacy. It’s also what makes him vulnerable – most Americans despise such thinking. In fact, the North won the Civil War over that issue and hasn’t yet forgotten its sacrifice. As for the wall, remember that we are addicted to cheap labor much as we are addicted to drugs. The solution isn’t to “don’t do drugs” or “don’t hire illegals”, the solution is to build a wall because that will lead us not to temptation. Yes, that strategy can be expected to work about as well as you’d expect.

    1. Trump is a BIG supporter of Israel.

      http://classicalvalues.com/201…..rts-trump/

      Will the KKK ever be surprised when they find out.

    2. The histrionics about the KKK are an example of why he’s popular. It isn’t true he won’t “disavow” them or Duke but it’s an example of the sort of idiotic media narratives that consume the retarded. And rather than brush them off as partisan stupidity many republicans playing the media’s gotcha game.

      If there’s one thing Trump gets right (and there may only be one thing) it’s telling the media and all the identity politics crowds to fuck off.

      1. Obama had the support of an ex-KKK member and nobody cared.

        1. Obama has support of legit communists and no one cares. And don’t forget his preacher.

          1. And the honest to goodness domestic terrorist who ghostwrote his books.

        2. Obama belonged to a black supremacist church for most of his adult life and no one really cared.

      2. “If there’s one thing Trump gets right (and there may only be one thing) it’s telling the media and all the identity politics crowds to fuck off.”

        This is huge particularly for Republicans. Republicans make plans progressives call them racist and Republicans bend over.

        The media and now the Republican establishment have taken out the Long Knives for Trump. He told told them to fuck off and is still standing.

        The powers that be haven’t been able to roll Trump yet.

    3. The only war Trump is selling is against the American elite.

    4. In fact, the North won the Civil War over that issue and hasn’t yet forgotten its sacrifice.

      ————-

      There are many who believe the War Between the States was a war or Northern Aggression. An aggression by what constituted the Progressives of the day against the South, and for a plurality of reasons beyond slavery. After all, Lincoln himself said it was about preserving the Union (as ruled by the North) regardless of anyone was freed. I live in the state the Republican Party was founded in, and – despite very little being discussed about it – am aware of one of the prime movers of the movement being Progressive German immigrants, some of whom were dyed in the wool communists. And, after all, the Progressive Party spun out of the Republican Party when it began to lose its radical nature, founded in my state as well.

      1. Cont.

        There are PLENTY of people who are sick and tired of being ruled by the Northeastern – dare I say – intelligentsia, and they have no use for the KKK. I think many of those people are likely libertarian, and don’t have a use for someone who is fully a Northeasterner such as Trump. But he is good at playing the populist. But in the end he hates the booboisie as much as as any other Northeasterner.

        So, if Trump gets in, we’ll have a guy in search of power pretty much exclusively, who will be on an island of his own, who will lash out at enemies. we’ll have a legislative branch as inert as ever, a bureaucracy that will do as it pleases for 3-4 years, and those who are so rabid for Trump will very quickly what he thinks of them once he gets in.

        1. very quickly learn what

    5. Trump has disavowed David Duke and the KKK many times, including the debate on 03/03/16.

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    1. We are gonna build a great firewall and make the bots pay for it!

      1. Make the Internet Great Again!!

  3. So your point is that Trump is the Grand Dragon of the KKK?

  4. …can be expected to work about as well as you’d expect.

    Aaaahhh… Yeah…

  5. “we see more people crossing over from Canada than we have from Mexico.”

    What we need is a moat to keep the border safe. Connect Lake Superior with Puget Sound and we’ll have it!

    Thank you. Don’t applaud , just throw money.

    1. Question: How many of these Canukistanis are merely on vacation versus how many plan to stick around?

      1. Sub-question: how many of them come here and overstay their visas to subvert the Canadian privacy laws and have a chance at being on Jeopardy!?

  6. Racial prejudice undoubtedly motivates many of his supporters

    Nope. Cultural prejudice. “Sharia is not compatible with liberal American vales.” It may also not be compatible with Christian cultural values. And then there are the Jews.

    1. You know who else found a code not compatible with the Jews?

      1. The Matrix maintenence team?

      2. Alan Turing?

    2. Yes, neither are Jim Crow or apartheid, which is what Sharia in practice amounts to.

  7. End open borders welfarism and then we can consider open borders.

    1. ^^this^^

    2. Exactly right. In a statist society that we live in today immigration is just another failed government program. The US used to place a priority on immigrants from Europe who pretty much held the same values as Americans. Then Senator Kennedy changed all that in the 60s, so know we have millions of immigrants from third world countries. How has that worked out for small government advocates?

    3. Is that like “end welfarism and we can talk about protecting the unborn”?

    4. End the franchise for statists, and we can have open borders.

      Money is a relatively piddling consideration compared to power.

  8. None of them mentions that the 9/11 hijackers came here legally.

    Um, yeah. They did.

    It’s not just illegal immigration that alarms Trump fans. Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., who endorsed him this week, favors a reduction in legal immigration. So does the Federation for American Immigration Reform, which has praised Trump’s immigration plan. “I’m opposed to new people coming in,” he said in 1999.

    There’s a point in here. Let’s see how long it takes to dawn at Reason.

    1. Did all of thise 9/11 hijackers stay here legally? Does having no method of enforcing visa limits matter? I don’t know. But it’s part of the immigration issue.

  9. Building a wall could create a lot of jobs, especially if they build it with spoons.

    1. No, we’re going to build it with skulls. No deportations required…

    2. Just think about all the new jobs in the spooning sector.

  10. Win or lose, they’re in for a disappointment.

    “They” being at least half the population, guaranteed.

  11. Based on the ads coming out in Michigan, you could trade Sanders name for Trump in this article. Kill trade, American jobs for American workers, etc. The next few months are going to be miserable. Thank Zod for Pandora and Netflix.

    1. You will thank ZOG and pay dearly for the privilege.

      1. As the Master wills…

      2. Holy crap. I googled that for the hell of it. Zionist Occupation Government? Heh.

    2. I called in to a radio show Welch was on and pointed out to the host that Sanders wants a repeal of NAFTA, CAFTA and wants to renegotiate TPP and all trade deals with China. The host said that can’t be right and Welch said I was being a bit hyperbolic.

      I suppose they could have read his platform.

      FTL: 4. Reversing trade policies like NAFTA, CAFTA, and PNTR with China that have driven down wages and caused the loss of millions of jobs. If corporate America wants us to buy their products they need to manufacture those products in this country, not in China or other low-wage countries.

      Or they could rail against Trump for not spending every moment disavowing every bad guy that supports him.

      1. Yup. Sanders is hitting that hard here in Michigan.

        1. The last time Sanders hit it hard was probably while wearing bellbottoms around his ankles.

      2. You would think with a name like Reason that it’s writers would make using reason a priority but sadly that doesn’t to be the case.

  12. So Hillary is a fan of open government? Who knew?

    1. No, Hillary is a fan of open government checkbooks…as long as they’re stroking the checks to her slush fund.

      1. And open servers.

        1. And open thighs.

          1. There goes breakfast.

          2. You son of a bitch. *BARF*

    2. And open borders to expand the Democratic vote.

      1. Winner!

    3. Yeah, she’ll be the most transparent prez evah

  13. What’s with all the recent posts authored by “reason staff’? Please list the authors so I can ignore the shite articles (like this one).

    1. Okay. I see Chapman’s name after clicking through.

  14. Most Americans, polls show, are in favor of giving unauthorized immigrants a path to citizenship.

    Define “path to citizenship.” I would think the approval numbers would vary quite a bit depending on the particulars. For instance, if the path to citizenship is merely “Oh, you’ve been here illegally for X number of years? Here you go, you’re now a citizen. Remember to vote Democrat!” then I think the number would go down quite a bit. OTOH, if the path to citizenship involved some kind of guest worker program (something like the old Bracero program) or some other easy to get work visa, a background check to make sure you’re not a violent criminal, and perhaps a citizenship test I think more people would support something like that.

    A lot depends on the specifics, so pointing to a vague poll result as proof that Trump supporters are a bunch of xenophobic racists strikes me as disingenuous at best. But then again, this is a Chapman article…

    1. Looking into the particulars would be racist.

      1. Opposition to internal progressive rule is racist.

        1. That’s eternal.

          Google’s speech recognition still needs work.

    2. Even though polls are supposed to be anonymous, people don’t want to look mean to anyone, so they answer in ways that may not accurately reflect how they feel.
      Ask a question in a way that pushes the answer in the direction you want, using this premise, and you get polls that say that a majority want a “path to citizenship”, when, in fact such a path exists – it is called the legal immigration system and it is geared towards making line-jumping and ignoring its prescriptions counterproductive.
      The thing that most incenses those who want illegal immigration stopped is that it isn’t the type of policy position that there is debate about its effectiveness – there is no debate that these people violated the law. No other group gets to do so with impunity, so why should people, who have never contributed a thing towards this country, get this free ride?
      It’s not racism, or even cultural protection – you won’t see a radical change among the immigration hawks if it is massive numbers of Europeans, that get sent back from whence they came. It will be celebrated, while the straw man of the racist, nativist, xenophobe claims burn to ashes.

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  16. Panic and rage: anyone who doesn’t support “open borders” must be irrational or, better yet, mentally ill.

    1. Racist! Authoritarian! Nazi! Worse than Hitler!

  17. You cite a lot of polls showing Americans this and that and the other re immigration. The reality is that all of those polls reflect nothing more than what pols SAY about immigration. Those polls are worded and manipulated by consultants in DC in order to determine the rhetoric of any ‘debate’ (defined really loosely since it is mostly about the content of endless 30 second TV ads in swing states) about immigration. Because when it comes down to what pols will DO about immigration, they are 100% certain to do absolutely nothing – and everyone knows that.

    You interpret all this inside-the-beltway and media crap as nothing more than evidence that 100% of pols should continue to lie and/or do nothing on the issue. And that may well be true. But Trump’s pretty obvious success on the issue tells me that this is a legitimate issue that should be honestly debated (in the real sense) during the election.

    This is NOT an issue that the political class should be allowed to simply control anymore and stifle all discussion. We NEED an election where the issue is debated fully – not stifled. Where voters have a clear unambiguous choice about what is SAID and what will be DONE. In the absence of that debate/vote, the only function of a ‘poll’ is a means by which the political class can continue to control everything without the slightest check on their power.

  18. Steve, could you cite your source for “The fantasy Trump holds out to his followers is that despite being out of step with the majority of their fellow Americans, they can dismantle all the changes they detest.” According to Rasmussen your are mistaken. Source here: http://www.rasmussenreports.co…..ion_update
    Reason seems to be falling into (already fallen into) the lamestream media method of saying whatever supports their narrative.
    Too bad, another source of info not to be trusted.

  19. Opponents of immigration are out of step…

    Well, yeah, and such a tiny minority that I don’t think I’ve ever know anybody who is generally opposed to immigration.

    Or…is this yet another shamelessly dishonest use of that term as a euphemism for people who are specifically opposed to uncontrolled borders and/or illegal immigration that is so popular here?

  20. Opponents of immigration are out of step…

    Well, yeah, and such a tiny minority that I don’t think I’ve ever know anybody who is generally opposed to immigration.

    Or…is this yet another shamelessly dishonest use of that term as a euphemism for people who are specifically opposed to uncontrolled borders and/or illegal immigration that is so popular here?

  21. Most are fine with the country’s becoming browner and more culturally diverse.

    And as a result, all those potential libertarians from the third world are sweeping Rand Paul into the presidency, right?

    The USA is becoming “browner and more culturally diverse.” Are we any freer?

    Do we see illegal immigrants joining the Libertarian Party en masse? Do we see them taking to the streets to protest high taxes, gun control, the welfare state, or censorship on campus? Are they even subscribing to Reason magazine in large numbers?

    Can anyone here show us how open borders is promoting the cause of liberty here in the USA?

    The real issue, of course, is not the fabled “color of skin.” that’s a straw man, and Reason knows it. The real issue is in underlying cultural factors which third world migrants bring with them. And the result – less liberty.

    1. Let’s not forget the rule of law and the unfairness to all those who are doing the immigration thing the legal way and waiting patiently for permission to enter, while the lawless get slavish support from the supposed guardians of our nation.

  22. Nothing wrong with being “out of step” when the alternative is seppuku.

  23. Newsflash for Steve Chapman: You libtards always omit the word ILLEGAL when complaining about immigration. Familiarize yourself with Title 8 US Code sections 1324, 1325, before you spew stupidity. Those federal statutes are pretty cut and dry. The carnage and crimes resulting from a border that leaks like a sieve and non-existent national security , has reached incredible proportions. http://tinyurl.com/jbswv7d
    Want to get a good idea of the disaster? Ask the citizens who live in Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas. https://t.co/eGunLY5vx9

    1. It isn’t hard to notice that “illegal” – or in Chapman’s case using the distraction of “legal or not” – is only included early and infrequently in these types of sellout America articles.
      Quickly it morphs into attacking the mean old racist, nativist, xenophobes wanting racial purity and selfishly keeping all the goodies to themselves.
      Unless you want complete libtard control, through the infusion of millions of voters escaping socialism’s failure, but wanting to make things “more like home”, there is virtually no reason to argue for ignoring this mass law-breaking.
      Is that what this ersatz libertarian wants?

  24. in this way, trump and sanders, or really any politician, are all selling the same thing.

    you don’t have to adapt to a changing world they’ll tell you, so elect me and i’ll get rid of all those annoying changes that are apparently the only thing holding you back. it’s as if they have magical powers and can alter the rules of the universe and common sense.

    as long as most people continue to believe such things are possible, they’re screwed.

  25. Trump talking about Mexico as a hell spot :/

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