Rural voters explain why they’re ditching Trump: ‘I went from being a pawn — to collateral damage’

Rural voters explain why they’re ditching Trump: ‘I went from being a pawn — to collateral damage’
Future Farmers of America members listen to President Donald J. Trump speak to workers Tuesday, June 11, 2019, during his visit to the Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy facility in Council Bluffs, Iowa. (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

President Donald Trump has desperately tried to convince rural America that he will save them as their communities are slowly falling away. Trump has tried to prop them up with farmer funding, but the tactic shows an ignorance about the issues that rural families are facing when it comes to education and access to medical care.

In a Washington Post report, Creston, Iowa beautician Re Nae Fulton said that she was done with Trump early on in his presidency.

"Silly us!" Fulton said. "He had everything handed to him. . . . Everything had to be about him — me, me, me, why aren't you bowing down to me? We need somebody who is going to heal our country and bring people back together."

After a long-term trade war that sent many farmers spiraling into bankruptcy and a crusade against the Affordable Care Act, which funded rural hospitals, national polls show Trump's support among rural voters is narrowing.

"In Michigan, Trump won 56 percent of rural votes to Hillary Clinton's 38 percent, according to 2016 exit polls," the Post cited. "A New York Times/Siena College poll of the state earlier this month found Trump and Biden were essentially tied with rural voters.

Alan Weisshaar is a farmer and rancher who left the Democratic Party. In 2016 he thought the promises the president made "sounded pretty good for farmers." While he voted for Clinton, he was ready to give Trump the benefit of the doubt. It didn't go well. He and his fellow farmers lost their shirts when the export demand for corn and soybeans took a dive. He lost about $40,000 each year of the Trump trade war.

"Before he was elected, he was all about the little guy, this populist rhetoric," he said. "But then he got us out of the trade treaties, like all of them, and I went from feeling like a pawn in his personal trade war to being collateral damage."

While Trump is still expected to win rural America, it's clear the broken promises have made a dent in those whose lives are worse after four years of Trump.

Read the full report at the Washington Post.

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