counter create hit The Great Revolt: Inside the Populist Coalition Reshaping American Politics - Download Free eBook
Ads Banner
Hot Best Seller

The Great Revolt: Inside the Populist Coalition Reshaping American Politics

Availability: Ready to download

Standout syndicated columnist and CNN contributor Salena Zito, with veteran Republican strategist Brad Todd, reports across five swing states and over 27,000 miles to answer the pressing question: Was Donald Trump's election a fluke or did it represent a fundamental shift in the electorate that will have repercussions--for Republicans and Democrats--for years to come. The h Standout syndicated columnist and CNN contributor Salena Zito, with veteran Republican strategist Brad Todd, reports across five swing states and over 27,000 miles to answer the pressing question: Was Donald Trump's election a fluke or did it represent a fundamental shift in the electorate that will have repercussions--for Republicans and Democrats--for years to come. The history of the American electorate is not a litany of flukes; instead it is a pattern of tectonic plate-grinding, punctuated by a landscape-altering earthquake every generation or so. Donald Trump's electoral coalition is smashing both American political parties and its previously impenetrable political news media.The political experts called the 2016 election wrong and in the wake of the 2016 election surprise, the experts have continued to blow it - looking to predict the coming demise of the President without pausing to consider the durability of the trends and winds that swept him into office. The Great Revolt delves deep into the minds and hearts of the voters the make up this coalition. What emerges is a group of citizens who cannot be described by terms like "angry," "male," "rural," or the often-used "racist." They span job descriptions, income brackets, education levels, and party allegiances. What unites them is their desire to be part of a movement larger than themselves that puts pragmatism before ideology, localism before globalism, and demands the respect it deserve from Washington. Zito and Todd have traveled on over 27,000 miles of country roads to interview more than 300 Trump voters in 10 swing counties. What they have discovered is that these voters were hiding in plain sight--ignored by both parties, the media, and the political experts all at once, ready to unite into the movement that spawned the greatest upset in recent electoral history. Deeply rooted in the culture of these Midwestern swing states, Zito and Brad Todd reframe the discussion of the "Trump voter" to answer the question: What next?


Compare
Ads Banner

Standout syndicated columnist and CNN contributor Salena Zito, with veteran Republican strategist Brad Todd, reports across five swing states and over 27,000 miles to answer the pressing question: Was Donald Trump's election a fluke or did it represent a fundamental shift in the electorate that will have repercussions--for Republicans and Democrats--for years to come. The h Standout syndicated columnist and CNN contributor Salena Zito, with veteran Republican strategist Brad Todd, reports across five swing states and over 27,000 miles to answer the pressing question: Was Donald Trump's election a fluke or did it represent a fundamental shift in the electorate that will have repercussions--for Republicans and Democrats--for years to come. The history of the American electorate is not a litany of flukes; instead it is a pattern of tectonic plate-grinding, punctuated by a landscape-altering earthquake every generation or so. Donald Trump's electoral coalition is smashing both American political parties and its previously impenetrable political news media.The political experts called the 2016 election wrong and in the wake of the 2016 election surprise, the experts have continued to blow it - looking to predict the coming demise of the President without pausing to consider the durability of the trends and winds that swept him into office. The Great Revolt delves deep into the minds and hearts of the voters the make up this coalition. What emerges is a group of citizens who cannot be described by terms like "angry," "male," "rural," or the often-used "racist." They span job descriptions, income brackets, education levels, and party allegiances. What unites them is their desire to be part of a movement larger than themselves that puts pragmatism before ideology, localism before globalism, and demands the respect it deserve from Washington. Zito and Todd have traveled on over 27,000 miles of country roads to interview more than 300 Trump voters in 10 swing counties. What they have discovered is that these voters were hiding in plain sight--ignored by both parties, the media, and the political experts all at once, ready to unite into the movement that spawned the greatest upset in recent electoral history. Deeply rooted in the culture of these Midwestern swing states, Zito and Brad Todd reframe the discussion of the "Trump voter" to answer the question: What next?

30 review for The Great Revolt: Inside the Populist Coalition Reshaping American Politics

  1. 4 out of 5

    Michael Perkins

    According to the American National Election Study, 20% of Trump voters, 7 million, had voted for Obama in 2012. These voters had a disproportionately large impact on the 2016 election because they were concentrated in key swing states in the Midwest. A May 2017 analysis by Global Strategy Group estimated that Obama-Trump voters accounted for more than two-thirds of Clinton's loss. Seen another way, about 18% of those who voted in 2016 did not like either candidate. A higher percentage of those r According to the American National Election Study, 20% of Trump voters, 7 million, had voted for Obama in 2012. These voters had a disproportionately large impact on the 2016 election because they were concentrated in key swing states in the Midwest. A May 2017 analysis by Global Strategy Group estimated that Obama-Trump voters accounted for more than two-thirds of Clinton's loss. Seen another way, about 18% of those who voted in 2016 did not like either candidate. A higher percentage of those rolled the dice on Trump that resulted in about 80,000 total popular votes in three key swing states---Michigan, Penn, Wisconsin---that gave Trump enough electoral votes total to win. Many 2016 voters believed the image portrayed on "The Apprentice" as an astute financier and great deal-maker who could finance his campaign with his own money. All that has turned out to be utterly false. https://thebulwark.com/the-worlds-bro... One theory as to how that show influenced swing voters... http://www.buffalo.edu/ubnow/stories/... --------- And those who stayed home impacted Hillary..... https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/... ------------------------------------- I don't belong to either party. But I think this would be a good book for Democrats to read. It challenges a lot of the explanations for loss that have been uttered in a kind of echo chamber for a couple of years now. It's more complex and nuanced than they realize. For example, it's no surprise that pro-life evangelicals have an aversion of Hillary. But there are several stories of lifetime Democrats, who were union organizers, etc., who voted for Obama and ended up feeling disappointed in him. At the same time, they felt a fundamental aversion for Hillary as a rich person, beholden to banks, who was not on the side of the working class. So they rolled the dice on Trump. Meanwhile, the folks profiled here face a huge dilemma. A changing world, driven by tech, has already left them behind. Trump promised that manufacturing would come back, but I have not heard an explicit plan of how that will be realized. At best, we might see factories where humans work alongside robots, such as the Tesla factory. And whether we like it or not we live in a global economy. This is not the 1950's. The final "what's next" chapter in this book was very weak, mostly made up of loose political prognostications. The march of tech will continue, even as the industrial revolutions of yesteryear marched forward. How will these folks cope? This book was a reminder, as is the case with any kind of politics, of whatever stripe, that everything is driven by emotion. “I really do believe that our attitudes are shaped much more by our social groups than they are by facts on the ground. We are not great reasoners. Most people don't like to think at all, or like to think as little as possible. And by most, I mean roughly 70 percent of the population. Even the rest seem to devote a lot of their resources to justifying beliefs that they want to hold, as opposed to forming credible beliefs based only on fact.” ― Steven Sloman, The Knowledge Illusion: Why We Never Think Alone =============== Desperation letters to President Obama. This article was published at the beginning of last year. I did not see it at the time. It just popped up on the Longform site. I read the letters only, not the journalistic rhetoric surrounding them. I was reminded how many of my Democrat friends feel disappointed that not a whole lot changed under Obama in terms of helping the working class or racial justice. These letters make for an interesting read and seem to give some insight into why some voters flipped from Obama to Trump. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/17/ma... =========== "Hillary didn’t win, and she had a billion fucking dollars of advertising and organizing behind her. Hillary didn’t win because the Democratic Party is systemically bad at elections, misread the populist appeal of Trump, underestimated how well his racial appeal worked, and didn’t drive to the damn net every minute of every day (oh hai, Wisconsin). They stubbornly refused to understand that many of their boutique policies repel the Walmart voters they must absolutely win in states that aren’t deep blue. In 2016, they came across as entitled to the office, instead of wanting to earn votes with hustle and humility. They can’t make that mistake twice." Wilson, Rick. Running Against the Devil (Kindle Locations 262-267). The Crown Publishing Group. Kindle Edition. "In the 2016 presidential election, there was a 1.1 percent decrease in the total number of votes cast by African Americans and a 4.5 percent decrease in black turnout as compared to 2012. Seems trivial, doesn’t it? Just 1.1? 4.5? Hardly. Those numbers were a cataclysmic drop-off in African American voters and cost Hillary Clinton the election." Wilson, Rick (2020-01-14). Running Against the Devil (p. 163). The Crown Publishing Group. Kindle Edition. ============ What manufacturing was that, pray tell? https://thebulwark.com/the-foxconn-bo... https://www.bloomberg.com/news/featur...

  2. 4 out of 5

    Brina

    I have always been somewhat of a political junkie. My grandmother was and my mother still is obsessed with politics. From the time I was young, I helped them campaign for candidates and attended rallies long before I was eligible to vote. My vote and allegiance has changed over the years but my penchant for discussing politics has not. A few times a week, my husband and I articulate current events and what it means for both the country and our family. I have noticed that one slant dominates the I have always been somewhat of a political junkie. My grandmother was and my mother still is obsessed with politics. From the time I was young, I helped them campaign for candidates and attended rallies long before I was eligible to vote. My vote and allegiance has changed over the years but my penchant for discussing politics has not. A few times a week, my husband and I articulate current events and what it means for both the country and our family. I have noticed that one slant dominates the political books here on goodreads and I sought out a book that told the other side’s story or at least was unbiased in its reporting. I found what I was looking for in The Great Revolt reported by journalists Salena Zito and Barry Todd as they told why many in the rust belt changed their vote from blue to red. Zito and Todd conducted their Great Revolt survey during the summer of 2016 in the midwestern states of Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Iowa. They wanted to know why so many middle Americans, in some cases from families who have voted for Democrats for generations, switched their vote to elect President Trump. The authors focused on seven groups of voters that included suburban mothers, religious ministers, and skilled laborers who have been forced to change their profession over the years as jobs moved overseas. While the impetus to vote for Trump varied from case to case, the overarching theme was people from small town middle America who did not trust either party in Washington. From the time Trump made his announcement in 2015, the voters targeted in this book saw him as an outsider, a maverick. While his policies and stances may not have aligned with all the people interviewed here, Trump’s position as not being beholden to either party won over many rust belt voters. It was these voters, rather than the Republican Party base, the made the difference in these key swing states. This book read like an extended newspaper article as the authors’ journalistic skills were apparent here. They provided numbers upon numbers from their own surveys to back up their findings, but midway through it started to drag. Each person interviewed noted why he or she changed their vote to republican from either democrat or not voting. The reasons usually included affordable health care, keeping jobs in the United States, the appointment of Supreme Court justices, and a general level of trust. I would have gotten the message in a book one third the length of this one. I prefer that goodreads stays free of political discussions. I am here to discuss books not politics and for the most part choose not to comment on reviews for political books. Yet, I do appreciate hearing all sides to every issue, especially as politics has gotten more polarizing with each passing year. While The Great Revolt was less biased in its reporting than the other current political reviews I have seen on goodreads, it was not the book I was seeking that told the other side of the story. I did find each person’s reason for voting for President Trump to be fascinating, but I felt that there was too much repetition to make this survey as game changing as it could have been. In fact, my favorite anecdote was of the President’s response to the NFL protests, which had nothing to do with the survey at all, showing that the reporters needed more information than surveys and interviews to create a full length book. That book on goodreads that presents President Trump in a positive manner, I am still waiting for it to appear. In the meantime, I will steer clear of political books and stick to reading for my own enjoyment. 3 stars

  3. 5 out of 5

    Jeanette

    This book does what the best non-fiction tries to do and so often fails to do. It stays narrowly focused upon the subject matter and is specific. In this case with exact witness and much traveled research for the dozens and dozens of places and 100's of "eyes" which did the "reshaping". But what truly gave it the 5th star for me was the ability of this author to so deftly categorize the data. Her chapter titles, and her slicing and splicing of the witnesses' words, life stories, and other associa This book does what the best non-fiction tries to do and so often fails to do. It stays narrowly focused upon the subject matter and is specific. In this case with exact witness and much traveled research for the dozens and dozens of places and 100's of "eyes" which did the "reshaping". But what truly gave it the 5th star for me was the ability of this author to so deftly categorize the data. Her chapter titles, and her slicing and splicing of the witnesses' words, life stories, and other associated criteria upon their decisions to vote? Just masterful. Instead of clumping them into state regions or some such more literal or nominal divisions, she just gave them their base identity or "reason" category as the criteria for grouping instead. And that becomes an immense window into seeing how the coalition could possibly work or stay together for any base commonality or condition. And that she got all these people (many of the women and some of the men would never state to most associates that they might or would vote for Trump before the election and they fully admit this) to be so candid and forthright! The mighty repercussions of reaction in 100 forms of nasty being so well known, especially within the women's lives here! That had to have held tremendous conversational and personal approach skills by this author and her team. And did they drive for weeks. Chapter names give you the insight to what you will get here. Perfectly. Chapter 1: Hidden in Plain Sight Chapter 2: Red-Blooded and Blue-Collared Chapter 3: Perot-istas Chapter 4: Rough Rebounders Chapter 5: Girl Gun Power Chapter 6: Rotary Reliables Chapter 7: King Cyrus Christians Chapter 8: Silent Suburban Moms Chapter 9: A Culture Craving Respect Chapter 10: Pragmatism Before Ideology Chapter 11: Localism, Not Globalism Chapter 12: What Comes Next All are excellent. But #9 and #12 are 6 star exceptional. Many of my personal friends and myself to a minor extent are Rotary Reliables, but being in a Blue state (IL) there were tons of Rough Rebounders and Silent Suburban Moms around me, as well. And Zito nails with this book's form. But what I loved the most about this book was the easy read enjoyable experience of hearing all about these towns, these farms, these changing jobs and moving lives from the people who have lived them. It was better than the best celeb, historical diary or any other type of memoir I've read in years. Really, I had no idea how many people were small town entrepreneurs or self-employed in 2nd jobs. And adopting, raising relatives and doing 100's of other side community functions at the same time. Or who support the drug addicted or have towns in a post-meth fire aftermath. Even working at a food pantry in my small MI town didn't prepare me for the depth of these experiences. And one of them was a girl who was born in Marcellus, MI. I couldn't believe it. Because I don't ever think I saw my lake town's name in a published print before. Priceless quotes galore from the witnesses. I don't know which one or two to pick so I won't add any. Please do read this book regardless of your politico or country location. Highly recommend. And that is in itself an outlier too. Because I don't think I've ever recommended a book from a media reporter or from this type of category either.

  4. 4 out of 5

    susannah

    This book temporarily made me lose the will to live. The introduction was impressively researched, information dense and I was hopeful that I would gain some understanding of how people could vote for such a man, and continue to support him. Hearing their life stories I felt compassion for the hard times they experienced but even more frustration at their expectation of government to fix things. There seems to me to be a giant blind spot in their worldview, a cognitive dissonance in their reason This book temporarily made me lose the will to live. The introduction was impressively researched, information dense and I was hopeful that I would gain some understanding of how people could vote for such a man, and continue to support him. Hearing their life stories I felt compassion for the hard times they experienced but even more frustration at their expectation of government to fix things. There seems to me to be a giant blind spot in their worldview, a cognitive dissonance in their reasoning. “He tells it like it is” was a constant line, when clearly he does nothing of the sort. They voted for him because of his rabble rousing campaign slogans, “drain the swamp” “lock her up” and then complain that “the media” take him too literally. They blame government for not turning back time to the 1950s when manufacturing jobs were plentiful and well paid, meanwhile they vote for the king of outsourcing. They refuse to move away from their hometowns and expect jobs to come to them but they despise immigrants who leave everything behind and come to this country to thrive. They are full of nostalgia for the old days, and their ancestors who came to the US for a new life (the right way) but they refuse to adapt. They are completely blinkered to the reality of life in the 21st century, they have no idea of the hoops immigrants have to jump through to gain foothold here, and what’s worse? They delight in their ignorance. Reading this book has made me fearful for America’s future. Having a reality show star as president is not good for this country. Does President Trump understand the difference between “reality tv” and real life?

  5. 5 out of 5

    L.A. Starks

    This analysis and reporting on Midwestern voters is only for readers already interested in politics. Salena Zito, along with Dilbert creator Scott Adams, was one of the first to accurately call the 2016 presidential election, based on her Midwestern in-the-field reporting. Along with co-author Brad Todd, in this book she illuminates some of the individuals, groups, and priorities that combined in the election's unexpected result, and that so many other journalists missed.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Suzanne

    Journalist Salena Zito hit the road and spent quite of bit of time interviewing voters in the Rust Belt – those states that were hit hard during the decline of manufacturing in the United States. States like Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin that used to comprise “The Blue Wall” flipped from Democrat to Republican and handed Donald Trump the presidency. What was it exactly, Zito pondered, that changed the voting trends in places like this? Through these interviews, it is clear t Journalist Salena Zito hit the road and spent quite of bit of time interviewing voters in the Rust Belt – those states that were hit hard during the decline of manufacturing in the United States. States like Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin that used to comprise “The Blue Wall” flipped from Democrat to Republican and handed Donald Trump the presidency. What was it exactly, Zito pondered, that changed the voting trends in places like this? Through these interviews, it is clear that Hillary Clinton and the Democrat party made a gross miscalculation.  What Zito found was voters who switched party affiliation and voters to felt motivated to go to the voting booth for the first time in decades.  The cause? There were several.  Primarily, communities like these were dying with the exodus of manufacturing - and good paying jobs along with it.  It was heartbreaking to hear of cities with 30 percent unemployment or higher at a time when President Obama claimed the United States had recovered economically.  These communities clearly hadn't.  For decades, the Democrat Party had stood for the blue collar worker, but these people understood that they had been left out in the cold for globalist policies; and for more preferred special interest groups - namely environmentalists and supporters of illegal immigration. Other pivotal causes were gun control, the Supreme Court and national security.  I applaud Ms. Zito for a well-written and researched look at the voters that made a difference in the 2016 Presidential election.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Conor Ahern

    If you want to read a bunch of people who self-describe as feminist gun owners (something I think is fully coherent) who had reservations about voting for Trump but did so anyway (something I think is completely incoherent), you should read this book. It puts all of the Trump supporters who the NYT et al. have been trying to "figure out" since 2016 into neat little taxonomies, and attempts to explain how they were all activated in just the right way to put Trump 70k votes ahead in the three stat If you want to read a bunch of people who self-describe as feminist gun owners (something I think is fully coherent) who had reservations about voting for Trump but did so anyway (something I think is completely incoherent), you should read this book. It puts all of the Trump supporters who the NYT et al. have been trying to "figure out" since 2016 into neat little taxonomies, and attempts to explain how they were all activated in just the right way to put Trump 70k votes ahead in the three states--MI, WI, and PA--that delivered him the presidency. Personally, I'm over it. I am so tired of hearing so disproportionately much about these people: how their political beliefs and petty bigotries are entitled to respect just because, and how they should be celebrated rather than pilloried for buying into the fantastical, contradictory, and loudmouthed bullshit Trump spewed to get elected and continues to harp on in his eternal complaint about how unfairly he's being treated. Blech.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Mike

    Decided to read this as a way of stepping out of my bubble and hearing out the Trump voters. Beyond the soft-touch approach the author gives Trump, the main theme here was the commonality that ran through all the voters interviewed: they’re all shockingly uninformed. These are the marks that the con man feeds on.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Kristen

    Disclaimer: Just because you read a nonfiction, political book, does not mean you agree with the politics discussed inside it. Review: If you are looking to understand how the hell we ended up with DJT as President of the United States, this is the book for you. If you are looking to see if your assumptions are correct about the Trump voter, this is the book for you. Basic overview? The authors are journalists who travel across middle USA to interview a variety of Trump voters. They section off the Disclaimer: Just because you read a nonfiction, political book, does not mean you agree with the politics discussed inside it. Review: If you are looking to understand how the hell we ended up with DJT as President of the United States, this is the book for you. If you are looking to see if your assumptions are correct about the Trump voter, this is the book for you. Basic overview? The authors are journalists who travel across middle USA to interview a variety of Trump voters. They section off the book into categories of the different kinds of Trump voters. So, the book is extremely well organized. The authors never give their opinions on the politics being discussed. Which, in my opinion, is good journalism - objective. They never show a left or right-leaning bias. The authors, dispersed throughout, give statistics and facts about the categories they place these voters into. As well as information about the towns voters are living in and the economic state of the town. I read this via audiobook & found the subject matter to be engaging. I am always trying to look at both sides of the political spectrum. That being said, yes, this book made me uncomfortable. Yes, I disagreed with those interviewed. All that being said, I learned a lot - pleasant or unpleasant. It gave me the insight I wanted into something that we, on the other side, were desperate to understand in 2016. Or at least comprehend. Maybe. Possibly. Everyone’s different. I think if you are interested in politics or the nature of the political climate in which we live, this is the book to read. It is basically the story of how we got our current President and how we got to this place in American politics. I stand by my rating. I stand by my opinions. Happy reading!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Rick

    So I was at a real bookstore the other day (a rarity) and noticed that there is a cottage industry in books bashing Trump. I can get that message any day by just getting out of bed so I picked up "The Great Revolt" from the library the other day. In a time when the main stream media is stuck on Comey, Russians and "women were just too stupid to vote for me" this book was an interesting look at why counties that voted for Obama flipped to Trump. It does this by actually visiting those counties (w So I was at a real bookstore the other day (a rarity) and noticed that there is a cottage industry in books bashing Trump. I can get that message any day by just getting out of bed so I picked up "The Great Revolt" from the library the other day. In a time when the main stream media is stuck on Comey, Russians and "women were just too stupid to vote for me" this book was an interesting look at why counties that voted for Obama flipped to Trump. It does this by actually visiting those counties (whuh?!?) and talking to real voters. The book did not obsess with what a lousy candidate Clinton was. A surprisingly common thread, voiced by a number of people who voted twice for Obama, was that Obama's mediocre performance compelled his constituents to vote for change. Economics was also a common reason for voting for Trump. Another common message was that these voters feel stronger now about their decision than when they made the vote. Apparently the constant negative press is not having it's intended result. This book dovetails nicely with a book published in early 2016 called "Listen, Liberal". This book, written by an author from the Left, has the premise that the Democratic Party has abandoned it's base to become the party of the elite and identity politics. Anyway, turn off the TV and internet and read a book. Or two.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Lissa

    3.5 stars. An interesting perspective on the 2016 election.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Steve

    I have mixed feelings about this book, but it certainly made me think, as evidenced by this rambling and likely self-contradictory review. The bottom line is that it's worth reading, thus the four stars. But it's certainly flawed and it gets repetitive, so I can't give it a fifth star. This book is supposed to show a Trump-hater like me the human faces behind the Trump coalition, and explain why they comprise a new and sustainable political movement. It works, but only to an extent. The format i I have mixed feelings about this book, but it certainly made me think, as evidenced by this rambling and likely self-contradictory review. The bottom line is that it's worth reading, thus the four stars. But it's certainly flawed and it gets repetitive, so I can't give it a fifth star. This book is supposed to show a Trump-hater like me the human faces behind the Trump coalition, and explain why they comprise a new and sustainable political movement. It works, but only to an extent. The format is effective, mostly because Salena Zito's own analysis is biased and sometimes weak. Her introductions to each of seven identified voter types are pretty mediocre, as are her closing chapters. However, she is very good at writing personal profiles of individual voters, and their stories elicit more empathy and understanding. Also, Zita intentionally glosses over key factors regarding each group — and the Trump coalition overall. In the big picture, the book ignores Clinton's massive popular vote margin and acts as if Trump won a landslide victory. Granted, the election should never have been as close as it was, and Clinton was a fatally flawed candidate, but Trump won with 60,000 votes in three Midwest states, and the authors act as if it is an insurmountable, massive coalition. Moreover, Zita doesn't even hint at the gerrymandering and voter suppression that helped get us to Trump. The book also almost completely ignores race when other analyses have pointed to race as a prime factor in the Trump victory (https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politi...). Also, Zita accuses the Democratic party of switching from the party of the working man to the party of "multicultural militancy," ignoring the fact that Democrats are addressing real problems such as police brutality that Trump and most Republicans would rather pretend does not exist. I concede that Trump's base hasn't budged after almost 2 years, and the representative interviews in this book suggest they aren't budging anytime soon. But they also expect a lot out of Trump that I believe he can't and won't deliver, and these voters might just jump on the next big "change" bandwagon. The first group profiled the "red-blooded and blue-collared" group — folks struggling to keep up and dealing with rampant job loss and addiction in their communities. She talks about their America First mentality and their isolationism, but ignores any potential racism. I appreciate that there are voters who feel left behind in the modern economy and by both mainstream political parties, but I think they were hoodwinked by Trump. The first person is a union organizer who gives up on the Democratic party because it agrees to trade deals that undercut unions and American workers (fair enough), and he hates big corporations. Instead of expressing remorse in voting for Trump's pro-corporate agenda, he forgives Trump and says it is going to take him time to fight the big entrenched forces he is up against. His voters wanted change, so they voted for Obama twice as a change candidate, then they voted for Trump. And they like that he's unapologetic and they really think he is draining the swamp. The second group is Perot-istas, who haven't connected with a candidate since the equally loony and inexperienced (but far less dangerous) H. Ross Perot. Sure, they helped swing an election to Trump, but even Zito admits they aren't likely to stick with him, and they don't realistically seem like a large voting bloc by any stretch. The Rough Rebounders had perhaps the most interesting intellectual profile. They love Trump not because he claims he's a great businessman, but because he isn't, in reality. They have failed, so they connect with a guy who has been a massive failure at everything except branding and keeping his name in the news (in my unbiased estimation). I'm fascinated, but also I kind of hate them. So great, you like the guy because he's kind of a schlub like you. So go play golf with him, don't give him access to nuclear weapons. The female gun owners were also interesting. I regularly lament the lack of such galvanizing issues as guns and abortion for progressives. Gun control and choice are important to most progressives, but you're never going to rally millions of voters around those issues in the stark and laser-focused way Republicans do with guns and anti-abortion rhetoric. "They're going to take away my guns" is always going to be a more compelling argument. You had to read between the lines a tiny bit, but she at least acknowledges in this chapter that it was mainstream Republicans and (mostly) the NRA that drove these voters to Trump, rather than Trump himself. The Rotary Reliables were next in the book. Interestingly, Zito repeatedly critiques educated urban conservatives for turning on Trump and living in bubbles that reinforce their beliefs, but fails to recognize that her descriptions of small midwestern communities suggest equally isolating and conspiratorial bubbles, but on Trump's side. Also, I get that there are mainstream Republicans who hold their nose and vote for Trump because he's going to get them tax cuts and judges (and they were 1,000-percent right) But I save my real atheist rage for the "King Cyrus Christians," who believe, based on some cockamamie Bible story, that the heathen and amoral Trump is somehow going to save and lift up all the Christians who have been so persecuted and left behind in this very Christian nation. I have nothing against your religion, but keep it out of my damn government. Finally, the book talks about suburban moms who voted for Trump, acknowledging all the while that they aren't a very large or cohesive group. So where does that leave us heading into 2020. I understand now why some Trump voters are sticking with him, but I also have hope that enough will split away (remember it's not going to take very many) to bring him down in two years. On the other hand, they repeatedly say they no longer follow any mainstream news, so they rely on Trump's Twitter lies for their information but they certainly aren't fact-checking him. And I don't really get why they are so outraged by the mainstream news, and why they think Obama and the popular culture mock and degrade them. Obama spoke as a progressive but led as a centrist. As far as I can tell, their main beefs with Obama (after many of them voted for him) regard Obamacare, which was a Republican idea, and the gay marriage SCOTUS ruling. About that: If you believe in freedom, why do you care if Adam loves Eve or Steve. He's not making you marry him. He just wants to marry another dude. Who cares? It seems to me that libertarians have the most consistent conservative intellectual argument. Let people have their guns and their abortions and let people marry whoever they want — government doesn't need to be involved anyway. As far as the popular culture, are you that outraged by a gay couple on TV? Turn it off. Read a book instead. I'm not sure why a bunch of white Christians feel so disrespected by the mainstream popular culture, especially in the age of streaming, when they can watch anything they want. In general, I am glad I read the book, and I am more sympathetic to the working-class Trump voter, but I wish the analysis were more thorough and complete.

  13. 5 out of 5

    blake

    When the 2016 election came down to Clinton and Trump, I basically dropped out. After a lifetime of voting in every trivial election had resulted in never once voting for the guy who won (at any level, save one governor) or on a bill that passed or didn't pass, this was the nail in the coffin for me as "someone who really doesn't know what's going on in the world". (I'm comfortable with this: I'm an ideologue that wrestles with Jefferson's concern over old laws becoming tyranny over new generati When the 2016 election came down to Clinton and Trump, I basically dropped out. After a lifetime of voting in every trivial election had resulted in never once voting for the guy who won (at any level, save one governor) or on a bill that passed or didn't pass, this was the nail in the coffin for me as "someone who really doesn't know what's going on in the world". (I'm comfortable with this: I'm an ideologue that wrestles with Jefferson's concern over old laws becoming tyranny over new generations—something that nobody seems worried about, despite the ballooning costs of programs started before I was born.) I did realize Trump was going to win about six months before the election, but I couldn't say why, which brings us to this book by Brad Todd and Salena Zito. Zito was one of the few people in the media who saw Trump's potential for victory, and this book breaks down his voters into previously undescribed categories like King Cyrus Christians (who see the flawed Trump as a potentially good champion of religious freedom), Girl Gun Power (women who broke with Clinton over gun rights where their less hoplitic sisters heavily favored her), Silent Suburban Moms (women who favored Trump but didn't talk about it because of fear of social reprisals) and so on. This is based on The Great Revolt Survey, conducted for the purpose of writing this book which, honestly, I didn't analyze in any great detail. I'm going to just take it on faith that it was a good poll. (Your mileage may vary.) Then representative members of the group are interviewed for a breezy series of short vignettes that expose various details of their lives and thought processes. I ended up with a lot of takeaways from this book. First, I have to believe that the people who should most read this are least likely to. Second, while I see Trump zealots in my day-to-day social media life, the people who made the difference were by-and-large those who see Trump as a temporary figurehead of a much larger movement the authors trace back to the tea party (but which I would trace back even further, to rebellions against the 2002-era GOP controlled Congress and its disappointments). Third, I still don't really know what's going on, but I realize I'm not the only one. This coalition seems tenuous (and graying) to me, but neither am I convinced that the "ascendant coalition" that the Democrats are convinced will sweep them into power permanently is going to play out the way "the experts" have been arguing for the past 10 years or more. The most interesting—and heartening—aspect of this book was the following weird duality: I agree with almost none of these people on a political level, and culturally I am far removed from them. But I ended up liking them all and the little towns they came from. I gained a tremendous respect for their problems and how certain policies I had (until recently) subscribed to had hurt them. That's the thing about being an ideologue: You have the luxury of arguing about abstractions in a vacuum while the messy effects in the real world play havoc on entire communities. So, I am a little embarrassed, and greatly humbled to make the acquaintance of a group of my fellow Americans I had previously neglected. Recommended for anyone who wants to make sense of the election, however they voted.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Amit GR

    Perhaps the most important book I have read since the Trump election -- and I've read most of them.... The divide needs to be understood as likely 3 types of American Trump voter: (1) The Southern Trump voter (2) The affluent Trump Voter (3) the blue collar, middle America Trump voter. This group is unique. It is not a group that is racist (it overwhelmingly voted for a black man for president... TWICE), it is not dumb as many would call them. It is angry because it has been forgotten by those same Perhaps the most important book I have read since the Trump election -- and I've read most of them.... The divide needs to be understood as likely 3 types of American Trump voter: (1) The Southern Trump voter (2) The affluent Trump Voter (3) the blue collar, middle America Trump voter. This group is unique. It is not a group that is racist (it overwhelmingly voted for a black man for president... TWICE), it is not dumb as many would call them. It is angry because it has been forgotten by those same people that promised to take care of them -- it is a forgotten group by the liberal machine that basically has been patting them on the head and throwing scraps their way to ensure that they keep churning out the vote. Well, they got mad and they revolted and they are unlikely to ever return to mainstream political views (and votes). It is also the one group that has been detached from what America supposedly stands for -- ingenuity and evolution in the face of changing times because when the coal jobs were lost, when the factory jobs went abroad, these were the same workers that were unable to reinvent themselves and, instead, listened to the party that told them to put their hand out -- and they did not want to!!! They wanted to have pride in work, to be seen as an important part of the populace. Well, they managed to make themselves heard and, as a nation, America will pay a very heavy price for this alert...for a very long time. As a nation, Americans should take this in, learn the difficult lessons and try to better the lot of EVERY citizen, including those who feel entirely disenfranchised.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jenn

    Excellent story telling from the authors about the people in 10 swing counties in the Rust Belt, which flipped in the 2016 election. Voters felt left behind as their jobs had been sent overseas with NAFTA & coal mines closed with cleaner sources of energy. Voters were unhappy with the direction of the country, Voters all had similar hopes for Trump as a President for change and to “Drain the Swamp” or improve the recession they felt American lived in during 2016 and loved the logo “Make American Excellent story telling from the authors about the people in 10 swing counties in the Rust Belt, which flipped in the 2016 election. Voters felt left behind as their jobs had been sent overseas with NAFTA & coal mines closed with cleaner sources of energy. Voters were unhappy with the direction of the country, Voters all had similar hopes for Trump as a President for change and to “Drain the Swamp” or improve the recession they felt American lived in during 2016 and loved the logo “Make American Great Again”. Important issues included: 1. Bring back jobs 2. Protect S.S & Medicare 3. Supreme Court appointment which was a conservative 4. The Wall I found the first part of the book interesting, but noticed a partisan bias in the latter half and although I didn’t agree with some of the conclusions in the book, it was overall a good read.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Bert Hopkins

    The chapter titles says it all: Chapter 1: Hidden in Plain Sight Chapter 2: Red-Blooded and Blue-Collared Chapter 3: Perot-istas Chapter 4: Rough Rebounders Chapter 5: Girl Gun Power Chapter 6: Rotary Reliables Chapter 7: King Cyrus Christians Chapter 8: Silent Suburban Moms Chapter 9: A Culture Craving Respect Chapter 10: Pragmatism Before Ideology Chapter 11: Localism, Not Globalism Chapter 12: What Comes Next I identified with so many of the feeling my fellow citizens expressed in this book. My The chapter titles says it all: Chapter 1: Hidden in Plain Sight Chapter 2: Red-Blooded and Blue-Collared Chapter 3: Perot-istas Chapter 4: Rough Rebounders Chapter 5: Girl Gun Power Chapter 6: Rotary Reliables Chapter 7: King Cyrus Christians Chapter 8: Silent Suburban Moms Chapter 9: A Culture Craving Respect Chapter 10: Pragmatism Before Ideology Chapter 11: Localism, Not Globalism Chapter 12: What Comes Next I identified with so many of the feeling my fellow citizens expressed in this book. My disappointment with the entire Obama presidency. My horror at the dismantling of mores that made this great country. The attacks by the left on the 2nd Amendment to our Constitution. And many,many more feelings.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Charles J

    Most honest postmortems of Trump’s election are by Democrats focusing on what they missed. Usually, they are either narrow exercises in vote counting or more holistic attempts to understand Trump voters. In the latter group are Joan Williams’s "White Working Class" and Ken Stern’s "Republican Like Me." The common thread in these is discovery, a dawning realization that there are people out there with legitimate, even compelling, reasons to vote for Trump. Republicans, on the other hand, haven’t Most honest postmortems of Trump’s election are by Democrats focusing on what they missed. Usually, they are either narrow exercises in vote counting or more holistic attempts to understand Trump voters. In the latter group are Joan Williams’s "White Working Class" and Ken Stern’s "Republican Like Me." The common thread in these is discovery, a dawning realization that there are people out there with legitimate, even compelling, reasons to vote for Trump. Republicans, on the other hand, haven’t engaged much in postmortems. They have engaged in recriminations, or a facile triumphalism, but few seem to have analyzed Trump’s election in a focused, professional, way. "The Great Revolt" fills that gap. There’s nothing truly startling in this book, but it’s still interesting. The authors’ core point is that Trump’s election is not a fluke; whatever his faults may be, they do not outweigh his good points in the view of a wide variety of voters, including groups of people who, on the surface, have little in common with each other and seem like they shouldn’t like Trump. Moreover, most of these people were previously reliably Democratic voters. To analyze this and to demonstrate their thesis, Salena Zito (a journalist) and Brad Todd (a Republican pollster and consultant) conducted detailed opinion surveys, and then let people talk for themselves to supplement and exemplify the aggregate results, using individuals, meant as archetypes, from ten very different counties in five different swing states (Pennsylvania, Ohio, Iowa, Wisconsin, and Michigan). Zito and Todd break the Trump voters they examine into seven groups, each with specific demographic characteristics. “Red-Blooded and Blue-Collared” are those who “had worked a blue-collar, hourly wage, or physical labor job after the age of twenty-one, and had experienced a job loss in the last seven years either personally or in their immediate families.” “Girl Gun Power” is women under forty-five who owns guns for self-defense. “Rough Rebounders” is those who have overcome significant obstacles (and thus resonate with Trump’s story). “Rotary Reliables” is Chamber of Commerce Republicans—but with a twist, that they are from smaller towns, and therefore are surrounded by, and socialize with, conservatives and the working class, thus appreciating their concerns, similar to the way that such Republicans in bigger towns and cities are surrounded by liberals and therefore function as liberals. That is to say, these Rotary Reliables are diverse and inclusive, more so than their Republican counterparts in the cities. “King Cyrus Christians” are religious believers who are willing to overlook Trump’s dissolute personal life, as the Jews took advantage of the heathen Cyrus the Great’s release of the Jews from Babylonian captivity. (While I don’t understand why some evangelicals, like Franklin Graham, fawn over Trump, other than to be close to power, it is perfectly understandable, given that Hillary was the Right Hand of Satan, that devout Christians would vote for Trump, since, to coin a phrase, “If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice.”) “Silent Suburban Moms” are upper-middle class women somewhat turned off by Trump’s boorishness, and fearful of the hatred directed at them if they openly support Trump, but who support Trump nonetheless. Collectively, I am not sure that these really constitute the “populist coalition” of the subtitle, but they have more in common than just supporting Trump, and more in common than a casual observer might think. In particular, in all these groups the same three specific issues keep cropping up (along with some other issues that are more or less important to specific groups). Given the significant differences across these sets of people, this consistency is surprising. These three issues are who controls the Supreme Court, gun rights, and, most interestingly, the habit Obama had of apologizing, purportedly on behalf of the United States. (As all such studies find, and utterly contrary to the view of progressives, racial issues almost never crop up, and illegal immigrants less than you would expect.) The first two have a straightforward analysis—Democrats have for decades tried to evade democratic rule by using the Supreme Court as a leftist super-legislature, and Republican voters are well aware of that. Gun rights require even less discussion—in fact, in the past few months, driven mad by anti-Trump frenzy, prominent Democrats have begun openly declaring what they always lied about in the past, but which has always been true—that yes, they want to take away every single gun normal Americans own. But I would not have thought the constant apologizing was so important, and so disturbing, to voters. These people are not wrong about Obama’s habit of apologizing. He began his term by apologizing to the entire Muslim world and then in nearly every (or perhaps every) foreign speech he made ensured that his speechwriters worked in some form of abasement for supposed past misdeeds of the United States. Usually those misdeeds were left a little vague, such that the listeners were expected to fill in the specifics of their own particular grievance, so as to maximize the breadth and perceived impact of the apology. The substance or rationale of these apologies, though, doesn’t really interest me. Rather, I am curious why the voters were so upset. It seems to me that apologies can vary on two basic axes—by whom, and to whom. On the former axis, they can be made by the wrongdoer (Class A), or on his behalf by a legitimate representative (Class A’). Or they can be made by a successor in interest, who did not participate in the original wrong but has a material link to that person (Class B). On the latter axis, apologies can be made to people who are wronged (Class 1), or to their successors in interest (Class 2). (I put into Class 2 also those who have only suffered a lesser, derivative wrong, but those could be a third class, if you wanted to complicate the analysis.) Most people across the political spectrum would agree, I think, that apologies by Class A or Class A’ to Class 1 are unexceptional and some combination of desirable and necessary (or rather, they are unexceptional in the West, infused with Christian values—in a place like China, very different rules apply, which we will ignore here). Apologies by Class A to Class 2 seem less required and desirable. This is because the person wronged is the person who is “owed” the apology and is able to forgive—someone who has not suffered a wrong has neither the same right nor ability to forgive, and by the same token, is less deserving of an apology. Even less required or desirable is an apology from Class B to Class 1, since personal responsibility only attaches to a wrongdoer. Least appropriate of all is an apology from Class B to Class 2, where all parties involved have no actual connection to the wrong at issue. I think what rubbed the people in this book the wrong way is that all of Obama’s apologies were in that last and least deserving category (or, arguably, were in a fifth category, of a supposed Class B person apologizing for something done earlier that was not a wrong at all). Obama was not a Class A’ representative, although he may have viewed himself that way, because he was not representing any actual wrongdoers, either because the actual wrongdoers are dead, or because no wrong was committed at all. And naturally, Obama never apologized for something he did—only for wrongs done by elements of the United States government, or elements of our ruling class (and sometimes even for elements of other governments and ruling classes). Even if we assume that these wrongs were actual wrongs, and were as bad as Obama said, it is evident from what they say that the voters profiled in this book were viscerally outraged both by the stupidity of any “Class B to Class 2” apology, which necessarily humiliates the United States for no good reason. They also were angered by the knowledge that Obama in no way blamed the recipients of the apologies, much less himself, or his cronies, or progressives, or any of their predecessors in interest, for anything. Instead, all blame was to attach to a subset of current day Americans, who had done nothing at all to anybody—namely, the voters profiled in this book. Hillary Clinton was more explicit on this point, but nobody was fooled that Obama didn’t think the same way—he was just smoother. So maybe that this theme keeps cropping up as an element of Trump’s support isn’t all that surprising after all. One claim by the authors rings false, though. They say that Facebook, not the New York Times, “now drives the national conversation with the horsepower of its search traffic and algorithms.” But it is the NYT, with a junior role played by a handful of media outlets equally totally under the control of leftists, that sets both what is considered to be news and what the agenda behind that selection is. Anything not fitting the agenda is not considered to be news among the ruling classes and therefore is ignored and functionally suppressed; “it’s just Fox News.” This indirect censorship is extremely powerful, and Facebook does not overcome it, even if it used to allow alternative new sources to rise to the top of its news feed. And, since the election, Facebook has gotten in line, changing its news feed from showing what people are actually choosing to view, to forcing down on people only approved outlets (that is, the NYT and its cronies), along with using leftist “fact checkers” such as Snopes and Politifact as cover for direct censorship. Moreover, they (and Twitter, etc.) are moving, just in time for the 2018 election, to further censor “hate speech,” defined as conservative speech. So, between a combination of Facebook not setting the agenda itself, but rather taking direction from the Left, and actively cooperating in driving the news coverage to favor the Left, nothing has changed at all. In fact, contrary to conservatives’ hopes of the early 2000s, the NYT has much more power to set what is news and what is the agenda, since almost all alternative media enterprises of any public standing and reputation, that did not feel obliged to always toe the line, are out of business or a shadow of their former selves. That said, again and again the people in this book say that they have completely tuned out of the news, because it is so obviously unhinged leftist propaganda. This suggests that the impact of the NYT’s death grip on curating the news may be less than the Left hopes, or the Right fears. Tied to this is another fact that comes up time and again—many of the interviewees self-censor on social media, afraid of the hatred directed at them by their “friends” for the political views, a problem never faced by their political opposites, who preen themselves on their alignment with the selected news they are shown and regard pouring malice on those who disagree with leftist views as a holy cause. But when one group grows silent, they do not thereby agree more, and they are more likely just becoming submarine voters, which is the authors’ point. True, some voters may still be soaking in the propaganda, unwilling or unable to cut the cancer out of their lives, but my guess is that nearly all have tuned out the vast majority of it. I certainly have, even though I subscribe to the NYT—for years, now decades, I used to just ignore the editorial pages, but now I ignore all articles that are not completely unrelated to politics (an ever-shrinking group), since any article even tangentially involving politics is indistinguishable from the op-ed page. So what does this mean for the immediate future? Nearly all of the counties profiled voted for Obama in 2008 and 2012, and then swung hard to Trump in 2016. The authors note that this is an unstable situation—the voters could easily swing back. In many instances, their voting for Trump was a combination of Trump’s stands and an explicit feeling that the Democrats left them, not the reverse. (We are constantly showered with claims by supposed former Republicans that their party left them, but the media never suggests the same process is equally possible for Democrats.) If the Republicans nominated some Chamber of Commerce blob like Jeb Bush, or even a zombie Reaganite like Ted Cruz, and the Democrats nominated someone not a shrill, hateful, decaying crone or an elderly Communist, or dialed back their obsessive focus on the politics of identity and grievance in favor of acknowledging the concerns of the people interviewed in this book, I bet that’s exactly what would happen. Still, Zito and Todd believe that the more likely outcome is that the Trump coalition holds together, and that neither party has fully grasped this likelihood. (On a related note, the reason that progressives want to get rid of the electoral college is precisely to avoid this outcome, by making it unnecessary for national politicians to capture any votes outside urban areas.) Naturally, this book has been ignored by the liberal media, which suggests a continuing failure to grasp this obstacle to leftist dominance. But the core social problems that make these counties suffer are not going away anytime soon. Unemployment might be addressed by a different economic policy, but that is unlikely to happen with the levers of economic power being held by globalists, and even if we changed our policies, it is not likely that the 1950s will come again. And this is true not just because it’s impossible to go back—in addition, the social fabric of these counties is utterly destroyed, although the voters don’t seem to want to realize that. The biggest single problem is opiates, followed by a breakdown in families and the same atomization of society found everywhere. Even if $30/hour jobs returned, these problems would persist. This suggests that to the extent voters hope Trump will make a dent in their social problems, they are likely to be disappointed. Yes, he will protect their guns and their religious liberty; he will issue no apologies; and he will stick his finger in the eye of the liberal media. But is that enough? Probably to keep their votes for a while. In the end, the question is whether substantive change is required for these voters to be happy, or merely fighting on their behalf. We’ll find out soon enough.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    I’m not one to give five stars to many things – probably the Midwesterner in me that thinks there is always room for improvement. But this is not just a really, really good book, it’s an IMPORTANT one, and thereby deserves that extra star. The authors have done an impressive amount of research that has included not just polling, surveys, and analyzing numbers, but getting out into the country to truly comprehend what happened on Election Night 2016. The authors allowed voters to tell their own st I’m not one to give five stars to many things – probably the Midwesterner in me that thinks there is always room for improvement. But this is not just a really, really good book, it’s an IMPORTANT one, and thereby deserves that extra star. The authors have done an impressive amount of research that has included not just polling, surveys, and analyzing numbers, but getting out into the country to truly comprehend what happened on Election Night 2016. The authors allowed voters to tell their own stories, in their own words, with no other agenda than to understand motivations and thought processes. Coupling these real-life people to the data the authors uncovered, they tell a compelling story and present a holistic view of what led to the election of President Trump. I would suggest that this is a must-read for anyone who is a pundit or political professional, and who got it wrong going into Election Day (raises hand high). It’s a must-read for the armchair pundit, who binges on Fox News or MSNBC all day. It’s a must-read for those who live on the coasts, and think of many of these states as “fly-over” country. For those that think that “if only these people were better educated, they never would have voted for him,” I humbly suggest you read this book and get to “know” these people, their backgrounds, before insulting them in that way. One statistic that jumped out at me was this, from the book: “The Pew Research Center’s poll one week out from Election Day found that ‘Clinton backers… have more difficulty respecting Trump supporters than the other way around.’” Fifty-eight percent of Clinton’s backers agreed with the statement “I have a hard time respecting someone who supports Donald Trump for president,” while only 40 percent of Trump voters said the same of her supporters.” These stories, and the data that backs them up, shine a spotlight on the growing – and hardening – divide in the U.S. It is up to all of us, no matter who we voted for, to try to break down these divisions before it’s too late. This book isn’t about red or blue, not really. It’s about trying to help Americans understand their own countrymen. If you still “don’t get how this could have happened,” give this book a read. It really does explain it.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Jules

    A Must Read for Political Aficionados Great distillation of who voted for Trump — in the words of individual voters — in the 2016 Presidential election. It’s a deep dive into the minutiae of why these voters chose Trump. An eye opening look at what really drove them to Donald Trump.

  20. 4 out of 5

    David Baer

    I wanted to read this book as a way to answer a question that has been ongoing in my mind during the Trump era. “What the hell is wrong with people (that is to say, Trump supporters)?” First effect of reading this book is to move me a little bit away from that posture. Now, my question would be more like “Hi, ok, like you are all good people and I love you… I think we have some shared values… can we talk?” The book is written, basically, from a Republican perspective, but it’s tone is not at all t I wanted to read this book as a way to answer a question that has been ongoing in my mind during the Trump era. “What the hell is wrong with people (that is to say, Trump supporters)?” First effect of reading this book is to move me a little bit away from that posture. Now, my question would be more like “Hi, ok, like you are all good people and I love you… I think we have some shared values… can we talk?” The book is written, basically, from a Republican perspective, but it’s tone is not at all triumphal. The book is a synthesis of numerous in-depth interviews with people from Pennsylvania, Ohio, Wisconsin, and Michigan. A common pattern of these folks is they either never voted at all before, or they voted for Obama at least once. And now, they are 100% behind a guy who can’t open his mouth without lying, whose hypocrisy is off the scale, and who explicitly instructs his followers (“don’t believe what you’re seeing…”) to live in a narcissistic-Trump fantasy-world. Sorry, there I go again. My (acquired) coastal-elite bias is showing. Just because I accept that experts exist for a reason, not to mention reason itself… (nonono, stop, stop, STOP). The truth is, I totally identify with many of the pro-Trump impulses revealed by these interviews. I marvel at how “gay marriage” is now state-sanctioned, versus being literally unthinkable during my childhood, and I can easily comprehend a viewpoint that sees this shift as a form of elite conspiracy. I recognize that liberal bias in the mainstream media is a real thing: in my youth I was routinely enraged by how news pieces were framed, and NPR continues to drive me nuts at times. “As those with access to the megaphones of culture become more hegemonic, and less sympathetic or even less cognizant of the opposite half of America that lives outside its enclaves, it becomes inevitable that a siege mentality will set in among the consumers who see less of their values and priorities in the dominant culture”. The book kind of trails off at the end without a clarion call to action, and that’s OK by me. If we can all just keep talking to each other, and eschew caricatures, we will be fine.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jack

    I'm glad I read this book, and I think left-of-center folks would do well to get through this. Still, I think it could have been a lot shorter. The authors seem to be working off of a really useful data-set/survey from battleground state citizens, and when they rely on that information, it's quite interesting. However, there are too many "case studies" on the unfailingly awesome people who voted for Trump. They might indeed be great people - many of them come across that way - but the authors co I'm glad I read this book, and I think left-of-center folks would do well to get through this. Still, I think it could have been a lot shorter. The authors seem to be working off of a really useful data-set/survey from battleground state citizens, and when they rely on that information, it's quite interesting. However, there are too many "case studies" on the unfailingly awesome people who voted for Trump. They might indeed be great people - many of them come across that way - but the authors could have lent more credibility to their perspective without having to tell the reader how beautiful some of these folks were. Also, LOTS of the stories in the book really weren't that relevant. Too many of the people interviewed were nothing more than Republicans just voting for a Republican. I don't mean anything against those people. Plenty of Dems vote only for Dems. I'm just noting that it didn't lend anything to the purpose of the book - to understand how a failed businessman and immoral philanderer captured the hearts of people who historically voted the other way. So, the book could have been 100 pages and covered all that, and where the book DOES address that stuff, it's interesting and well written. For people REALLY interested in understanding why Trump won, Identity Crisis is a much better book. And, amazingly, a left-leaning author, Arlie Russell Hochschild, in Strangers in Our Own Land, does a much better job of respectfully capturing right-leaning though than Zito and Todd do of explaining their own tribe. Also, I'd like now to start seeing some evidence that right-leaning people are trying to learn about the lives of left-leaning folks. It's time for these folks in Ohio, and Pennsylvania and Iowa to start learning about the immigrant experience, and the difficulties of working in a big city with a modest income. Anyway, this book was worth the time.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Ailith Twinning

    Trump won because Obama was a shit president, and the Democrats betrayed the working class. The last liberal president was freaking Nixon - and Reagan and Trump as phenomena are largely a thriving on just insulting the people that screwed the working class, while they go on to do the same thing, but worse. They also thrive on the culture of White Supremacy, as distinct from the culturally acknowledged phenomenon of racism. We are a White Supremacist nation, and people don't like shifting from th Trump won because Obama was a shit president, and the Democrats betrayed the working class. The last liberal president was freaking Nixon - and Reagan and Trump as phenomena are largely a thriving on just insulting the people that screwed the working class, while they go on to do the same thing, but worse. They also thrive on the culture of White Supremacy, as distinct from the culturally acknowledged phenomenon of racism. We are a White Supremacist nation, and people don't like shifting from the status quo, so conservatism and cultural populism alike inherently take on a racist garb, in the United States. It's also how we've had many weird political figures who were basically socialists in economic theory, but their practical platforms for the working class were almost universally, and both overtly and specifically, both structurally White Supremacist and emotively just fucking racist. (Silver Legion's economic policies come to mind, especially literally giving out shares in the US and providing a UBI thru dividends). The authoritarian, totalitarian, and specifically fascist bents, I think, come from something else - largely religion. But where populists cross the line into demagoguery, in Americanism, is almost always under the auspices of religious authority. This book is a worthwhile addition to a giant pile of "trying to figure out America" - but it doesn't stand alone, it can't. Shit ain't that simple.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Barry

    You probably have to be pretty into politics to enjoy the level of detail in this book, but there is a lot of interesting data presented here. They examine 7 categories of voters that made up the Trump coalition in the previously blue-state Great Lakes region, and the reasons they voted for Trump, often despite some significant misgivings. Here’s one item: It was often reported that Clinton did better among college graduates overall, but the trend seems to be related to the voters’ social circle You probably have to be pretty into politics to enjoy the level of detail in this book, but there is a lot of interesting data presented here. They examine 7 categories of voters that made up the Trump coalition in the previously blue-state Great Lakes region, and the reasons they voted for Trump, often despite some significant misgivings. Here’s one item: It was often reported that Clinton did better among college graduates overall, but the trend seems to be related to the voters’ social circles rather than education per se. The college-educated that live and work with non-college educated people tended to favor Trump, while educated whites that live and work primarily with other college-educated whites (while ostensibly prizing diversity) trended away from Trump, even in Republican strongholds.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Bettie

    The Myth of Trump’s Populist Revolt A new book, endorsed by the president, reveals the fictions his supporters tell themselves. In a bid to offset the flurry of books critical of his presidency, Donald Trump has started something of a conservative book club, endorsing new releases that offer a rosier picture of his campaign and young presidency. The Myth of Trump’s Populist Revolt A new book, endorsed by the president, reveals the fictions his supporters tell themselves. In a bid to offset the flurry of books critical of his presidency, Donald Trump has started something of a conservative book club, endorsing new releases that offer a rosier picture of his campaign and young presidency.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Jenna Spinelle

    This book is a must-read for anyone who is looking to understand the circumstances that lead parts of the country to vote for Donald Trump. Salena's reporting demonstrates that people are complicated and issues are never as cut and dry as they are portrayed. I enjoyed the book so much that I interviewed Salena for a podcast that I produce about democracy: https://www.democracyworkspodcast.com.... We had a great chat about why it's important to get outside of your comfort zone and challenge your This book is a must-read for anyone who is looking to understand the circumstances that lead parts of the country to vote for Donald Trump. Salena's reporting demonstrates that people are complicated and issues are never as cut and dry as they are portrayed. I enjoyed the book so much that I interviewed Salena for a podcast that I produce about democracy: https://www.democracyworkspodcast.com.... We had a great chat about why it's important to get outside of your comfort zone and challenge your assumptions, especially when it comes to politics.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jeff B

    Actual journalism. No political spin-just a chat with real people who have real concerns. While the media & political establishment see people as one dimensional, these writers see them as people. If one wants to see “what happened”, one should dialogue with the very people who made it happen. The more these people are ignored (or put into baskets) the stronger the movement will grow. Very real. Actual journalism. No political spin-just a chat with real people who have real concerns. While the media & political establishment see people as one dimensional, these writers see them as people. If one wants to see “what happened”, one should dialogue with the very people who made it happen. The more these people are ignored (or put into baskets) the stronger the movement will grow. Very real.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Andrew

    Want to know why Donald Trump could be re-elected? Read this. Want to know how to beat him? Read it again. The best post-mortem of 2016 I've seen.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Sandy Singh

    This book was researched really well. However, the extensive interviewing of those who voted for Trump became repetitive and helped me fall asleep several times.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Feng Ouyang

    This book reports a non-mainstream view of Trump voters in the heartland of USA. It is the result of journalistic interviews and pools. It classifies trump voters into seven types of groups. According to the author, these groups like different aspects of Trump, some reluctantly. They also share the following commonalities. • Some of them support Trump enthusiastically. In fact, they are not traditional Republican voters. They either switch from Democrats or started to be involved in politics beca This book reports a non-mainstream view of Trump voters in the heartland of USA. It is the result of journalistic interviews and pools. It classifies trump voters into seven types of groups. According to the author, these groups like different aspects of Trump, some reluctantly. They also share the following commonalities. • Some of them support Trump enthusiastically. In fact, they are not traditional Republican voters. They either switch from Democrats or started to be involved in politics because of Trump. Others support Trump reluctantly. • Many expressed reservation on Trump’s personal qualities (such as his manners and his treatment of women). But overall they find Trump a better alternative. • Almost all of them cite attacks from the establishments and, especially, from the media as their reason to support Trump. • Almost all of them cite disappointment by Obama as a reason to vote for Trump. The griefs against Obama include cultural (gay marriage), racial (black lives matter and other issues) and economical (regulation and tax). Many of the interviewed voted for Obama in both elections, and now are disillusioned. • Many people identify with Trump for his outsider stance and his underdog status. They are against powerful institutions (political parties, media, and big corporates) and hope Trump can bring some check to these forces. • All interviewed express continuing support of Trump in 2017/2018. They resent the constant attacks from the media and are excited about Trump's actions as a president. • All interviewees are not in economic distress. In fact, some are doing well as small business owners. But they are concerned about the plight and decline of the rural communities and want the country to take a different direction. • None of the voters have extensive knowledge of macroeconomics or international politics. They accept Trump more on an intuitive level: he will appoint conservative judges; he will stand firm against other countries; he will put a stop on the welfare state, he will bring manufacture jobs back, etc. Therefore, Trump’s blatant disregard of facts and the ill-conceived notion of international trade do not bother them. • The most cited Trump policies that win supporters are appointing conservative judges, a more hawkish foreign policy, and deregulation. Not many people care about immigration policy. ************** My general feeling of the book: • This book presents an “alternative view” of Trump voters from the mainstream media. The differences are very significant; they affect our outlook on the future of America. Especially, the author emphasizes how these voters used to support Obama or traditionally support Democrats. The shift in allegiance should be bad news to the Democrats. • However, the interviews and pools are limited to Trump voters. It cannot be ruled out that just as many traditional Republican voters or Bush voters switched sides because of Trump. Therefore, the book does not provide an overall picture of the country’s direction; it just offers a perspective towards a fraction of the country. • In addition to the interviews, the book is based on statistics, which are typically organized in counties. Such an organization may be due to how the polls were conducted. However, I am not sure counties are a suitable unit for political and economic analyses. • There are some critics on the journalistic practices this book is based on. For example, it was alleged that some of the interview records cannot be verified. In my view, the book’s theme is very offensive to the establishment; it is not surprising that the book is under heavy scrutiny. Therefore, the relatively insignificant finding of problems may be viewed as a testament to the book’s overall validity. ************ The seven groups that the author described are briefly summarized below. • Red-blooded and Blue-collared. They are mainly about reviving manufacturing jobs in the US and restoring its strong position in the world. • Perot-isters. These people used to vote for Ross Perot. They are independent between democrats and republicans and are not very interested in politics. They are excited by Trump because of his outsider status and his independence. They hope Trump will change the corrupt political system in Washington. • Rough Rebounders. These people usually experience personal struggles and consider themselves as survivors against life’s setbacks. Some of them are small business owners. They identify with Trump for his underdog status in the race and his fighting spirit against the political institutions and media. For that, they can tolerate Trump’s bad manners and inaccuracy in facts. And they like to join the movement to take on the powers that be, such as political institutions and big corporates. • Girl Gun Power. They are women who value gun ownership. They view gun ownership as empowering and a sign of independence. They are repelled by Clinton’s stance on gun control and see Trump as critical in keeping Supreme Court conservative. They don’t like Trump’s treatment of women. But they dislike Hilary more. • Rotary Reliable. They are highly educated people with good economic status. However, they live in small towns or rural counties and are socially connected with the local population. They worry about local communities and see Trump as the better alternative in reversing the community decline. They also identify with Trump’s “can do” attitude and independence. • King Cyrus Christians. These are the evangelicals who vote for Trump merely to keep the Supreme Court conservative. They do not like Trump’s manners and his attitude towards women. But they are alarmed by the countries drift to the left in cultural value and see Trump as the savior. • Silent Suburban Moms. They are expected to vote for Clinton and are socially pressured to do so. They are put off by Trump’s treatment of women. However, they believe the country needs a change from the Democrats and reluctantly vote for Trump.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Laurel Flynn

    I've read it. Can't say I don't have any insight into who voted for Mr. DJ Trump, now, not that I don't personally know several people who a.) voted for him, b.) still admire him and c.) we're still friends or acquaintances. Forgive me if I don't spend lots of time on my review since I borrowed the book from the library and there are people waiting for it, but, yes, I could definitely deal with the material point-by-point. Disclaimer: I am a retired scientist and female, rarely vote Republican, I've read it. Can't say I don't have any insight into who voted for Mr. DJ Trump, now, not that I don't personally know several people who a.) voted for him, b.) still admire him and c.) we're still friends or acquaintances. Forgive me if I don't spend lots of time on my review since I borrowed the book from the library and there are people waiting for it, but, yes, I could definitely deal with the material point-by-point. Disclaimer: I am a retired scientist and female, rarely vote Republican, anyway, and I read the the New York Times. This is not a simple piece of reporting. I found much of the discussion of democratic party positions and characterizations of people who vote democratic to be non-neutral in tone and lacking in centrist focus. Nobody likes sweeping generalizations with no citations to support them and the anti-intellectualist tone just grates - ask me my opinion on college sports scholarships, for example (no, don't - that's a discussion that wouldn't end well) since there is no equivalent academic support. "Coastal elites"? People move for good jobs, like my son in Boston, for example. There is no monolithic movement bent on destroying everyone in the Midwest. Final disclaimer: I read "The Great Revolt" after the New York Times reported on the Trump family finances. This latter piece of reporting puts the lie to much of DJ Trump's personal mythology, just to be clear. First, the authors took a survey concentrating solely on people who voted for Trump and, despite only 21% of the respondents having voted for Mr. Obama previously, this group of voters who changed parties was who Ms. Zito and Mr. Todd chose to focus on in their book. This doesn't strike me as a large defection, especially since Trump and Obama both had slogan-driven campaigns. Second, the authors did not control for factors about Mrs. Clinton that might lose her votes regardless of her opponent, such as Bill Clinton's record or her being a woman. I'll be honest and say I don't think the country was ready to elect a woman to be president - I feel that there is still too much automatic dismissal of women in authority roles and outright discriminatory assumptions holding sway with many people. Multiple-choice surveys suffer from exclusion bias: what if you want a choice that is not there? The fewer the choices the more likely the survey authors are not going to cover the range of opinion accurately. Things I wish to point out about the people whose opinions and world-view are covered in this book: only 6% of the respondents use Obamacare, only 5% identify as Democrats, 87% have a positive personal economic outlook. The respondents are 81% against reproductive choice, more likely to own a gun than the general population (though not owning a gun does not mean one is opposed to it) and much more likely to hunt or fish (the comparison data comes from FoxNews, citing a source that seems reasonable). The people chosen by the authors to interview (and I assume, here, that there had to be a willingness to give their real name, anonymity not an option) are not as ordinary as one might want to think - no random choices, here. They are business people, people with a community position, people who have had the connections to make progress in their lives or rise above adversity, people with at least a certain amount of articulateness. There is at least one interviewee who is a local Republican official. Some of the vote defection, from democrat to republican, was attributed to a poor opinion of Mitt Romney; no case was made for not voting for John McCain (though I wonder how many votes he lost due to the choice of Sarah Palin as a running mate). If the point of this book was to humanize Trump supporters, it almost succeeds. I'm not going to argue that there are people that the democrats didn't ignore while campaigning (the republicans were not perfect in this regard, either, but I digress) but, and it's a big load of "but." 1. Small towns need to change, just as successful cities did - your main street needs to offer something different because you are all shopping at WalMart. Realize your own economic culpability. 2. The rise of corporatism is not a simple phenomenon and the people who were left behind probably can't put the brakes on this movement no matter who they vote for. 3. I have no sympathy for people who subscribe to this "culture wars" nonsense or who singlemindedly vote with the NRA. No one is dictating your choice of church (though what are the 20% of people who checked "other" on the religion question? I'm intrigued). No one is taking your guns, though handguns trimmed in pink? Do they have rhinestones in the handle, too? Excuse me being silly and twitchy at the same time about the gun issue because the mass shootings in the USA show that some sort of conversation about violence is overdue. 4. People who farm (may God have mercy on your soul)....can I just leave that aside as too complex to try and cover. At the end I am left with the idea that it wasn't really so startling - Trump supporters are people, too. If I can put an idea out there: we vote out of a sense of our own personal story, out of what has happened to us (and those around us) and a sense of how the trends in current events will effect us. The question is, how factually-based is our story, how much do we argue from an unsupported "common sense" position (I have a habit of pointing out that "common sense" is not an argument and infuriatingly lazy), what are the assumptions underlying our worldview? Behind that choice between one of two candidates can be a lot of nuance and compromise though there are certainly those single deal-breaker issues.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.