Over the course of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, I lost count of how many times political analysts, myself included, claimed that something he had said or done was “finally what was going to lead to his downfall and chase off enough of his supporters.”
Obviously that never happened.
Seemingly too proud to ever admit that they were wrong about him, the more indefensible Trump’s behavior has been, the more enthusiastically they’ve tried to defend it.
He’s belittled POWs, used rhetoric that drew wide-spread support among neo-Nazis, mocked a reporter with disabilities, was caught on video bragging about sexually assaulting women, and more recently called a Gold Star widow a liar after she confirmed that he told her that her husband who had recently been killed in combat “knew what he signed up for.”
None of it’s mattered to the vast majority of his supporters or the Republican Party.
No matter how much he lies, attacks our Constitutional values such as the freedom of the press or our judiciary system, inspires white nationalism, belittles our active military, veterans, or their families, embarrasses the country, divides Americans, or proves he’s completely unfit for office — they simply don’t care.
Often I feel like Jesus Christ, himself, could come down from the heavens, call Donald Trump the living embodiment of the anti-Christ and the antithesis to true Christian values, and the overwhelming majority of his supporters wouldn’t change their minds about him. In fact, they’d probably turn on Jesus.
That’s how ridiculous I’ve found most of his supporters to be.
We all need to stop acting like anything he says or does is going to drive off huge swaths of his supporters.
It’s. Not. Going. To. Happen.
Tom Brokaw told Chuck Todd on “Meet the Press” this morning that he recently visited a town in Wyoming where Trump received something like 70% of the vote. He said if an election were held today, he’d probably still receive around 69.8% of the vote in that town.
I’m not saying we shouldn’t still keep fact checking Trump’s non-stop lies, or even trying to debate his supporters as much as possible, no matter how maddening an experience that might be. All I’m saying is that we need to stop expecting anything he does to have a significant impact on the majority of people who support him.
Sure, a few might change their minds and there’s obviously been a dip in his overall support since he was sworn into office. However, when you get down to his core supporters, the people who’ve ignored appalling indiscretions that would have sunk any other politician’s career, if those particular individuals haven’t abandoned him yet — they’re never going to.
Here’s a harsh reality: They don’t care if Trump’s campaign colluded with Russia.
The FBI could find evidence where Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin personally spoke with one another to time their attacks against Hillary Clinton and most Trumpsters would be fine with that. As long as he won, they don’t care what it took, what he had to do, how many crimes he might have committed, or even if a foreign enemy tainted our democracy by interfering in our election — Trump supporters simply don’t care.
For them, the ends justify the means.
So, please, everyone reading, save your sanity. Stop expecting most Trump supporters to suddenly start caring that they’re backing a vile human being, a con artist, a sexual predator, and an absolute national embarrassment.
They simply don’t care.