The Real Reasons Trump Won

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By: RK Coffey

Is anyone awake at the DNC headquarters?

They sleep-walked through this election cycle with reveries of donations and coronations. Never mind the deeply flawed candidate, the pollster over-reliance, the links to the Washington elite and the emails. The Donster is a monster and we can beat him over his orange coiffed head with his own insanity. Well…that failed spectacularly and tragically their dreams became a national nightmare.

As John “Swiftboat” Kerry demonstrated, you cannot allow your opponent to define you and expect to win. During the rare times Teflon Don was able to stay on-message, he repeatedly painted Hillary as corrupt and a member of the very Washington elite that has caused all the country’s woes. Never mind that the obstructionist Republican Congress was the root of governmental dysfunction.  “Blame Crooked Hillary” was the theme and it wouldn’t be a surprise if the “Lock her Up” chant became the official inaugural song.

The 16,000 voters in Wisconsin, the 28,000 in Michigan and the 27,000 in Pennsylvania that broke open the so-called blue firewall were clearly not moved by the montage of children watching a medley of Trump insults and idiocy. They couldn’t care less that he walked into a dressing room or bragged about what his tiny hands could grab. They looked around their neighborhoods and saw no jobs, little prospects, diminished property values and rampant drugs. Telling them they would have to essentially go back to school to be re-trained in order to rejoin the economy was both insulting and demoralizing.

Intentionally or not, The Donster understood that the message had to be simple and it didn’t matter if it was realistic. If you want to win, you have to tell people what they want to hear. Blame others, promise change and, in his case, offer no specifics.

This formula has consistently worked for the Republicans. They now control most of the state governorships and legislatures as well as Congress and the White House.

So how do the Democrats return from the wilderness? By remembering these two fundamental rules:

  1. All politics is local
  2. It’s the Economy, Stupid

Whether a voter believes a candidate is “trustworthy” or “experienced” has little to no impact on their decision making process. Even if they say the most important criteria is not taking away their guns, they will always have some financial concerns. If you can get them to believe that you will improve their economic status, you will be more likely to get their vote. And that is always accomplished by offering local change.

The Republican victory proved that everything else is of secondary concern.

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