Donald Trump: Populist, Pugnacious … and Remarkably Popular

Donald Trump

In a recent report (September 4, 2015) on NPR titled “Nativism And Economic Anxiety Fuel Trump’s Populist Appeal,” Maria Liasson seeks to explain the sudden and immense popularity—against all odds—of Bernie Sanders on the Democratic side of the aisle and, of course, of Donald Trump on the Republican side of the aisle.

In each case, these candidates are tapping into the zeitgeist of the American voters in the early battleground states and elsewhere. Worries about our pocketbooks and anxiety over the shifting demographics of the US are fueling what many pundits view as unlikely candidacies. How do these key issues play out in the election to date? Focusing on Trump’s campaign, Liasson explains,

As Michael Lind of the New America Foundation points out, the populist world view sees a division not between rich and poor but between producers and parasites. And that’s why Trump’s supporters hold in equal contempt Wall Street financiers who got a bailout and undocumented immigrants who broke the law.

In their eyes, both groups are cheaters and parasites. That’s why it makes perfect sense for Trump to call for a big wall on the Mexican border and for higher taxes for hedge-fund managers. Some of his positions — like higher tariffs, an end to tax breaks for hedge funds, and protections for entitlement programs like Medicare and Social Security — are challenging Republican orthodoxy. Some of them would even be right at home on Bernie Sanders’ website. But populism is often a mashup of positions from the left and right.

It seems many in the muddy Evangelical middle that sympathized with the Tea Party find themselves splashing in the puddle of this new-fangled populism—most particularly on the Republican side.

8 Responses to Donald Trump: Populist, Pugnacious … and Remarkably Popular

  1. LandonBep April 5, 2016 at 1:43 am #

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  2. Thomaskr April 18, 2016 at 2:56 am #

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  3. Thomaskr April 19, 2016 at 7:04 am #

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  4. sikis izle May 2, 2016 at 10:10 pm #

    Nice article ! Thank you..

  5. Link May 22, 2016 at 10:12 am #

    Ronald Reagan once said, That person who agrees with you 80 percent of the time is a friend and an ally, not a 20 percent traitor. Donald Trump and Republican activists, donors and elected officials like myself agree on much more than 80 percent, and so we must move forward as friends and allies. The stakes are nothing less than preserving our constitutional republic from being irreversibly engulfed by the unlimited government of modern progressivism.

  6. boy cat names July 4, 2016 at 11:30 pm #

    Ignoring Donald Trump ’s appeal would be a mistake, because he points to real divisions in the party coalition. His pugnacious nationalism has irritated many transnational elites. As political scientist Lee Drutman has suggested, a large portion of the electorate has populist inclinations.

  7. Alex January 14, 2017 at 3:57 am #

    Georges Orwell écrivait: « Toute la propagande de guerre, tous les cris, les mensonges et les haines, proviennent invariablement de gens qui ne sont pas sur le champ de ba&rille taaquo.

    In English, George Orwell said, “All war propaganda, all the screaming and lies and hatred, comes invariably from people who are not on the battlefield.” ;.

  8. Anjii January 14, 2017 at 4:56 am #

    This is a real message of HOPE.What I want to see is the young people getting fully involved in work with the older generation ,exploring their histories and developing ways of intarection between the generations

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