I think there is a left shift in the way liberals are talking about the economy, a shift that should be cemented and expanded. But it’s not clear to me, if and as it expands, why this would help Democrats with Trump voters, and I can see the many reasons why it would hurt. Going through these four examples will clarify why. Ironically, addressing white working-class economic insecurity will potentially drive them even further to the right.
There are some important stipulations to make before we go forward. First, I think the broad left agenda is the right one for the white working class. I think it would provide better jobs, income, security and freedom. Nothing succeeds like success either, and being able to deliver the goods could change the underlying dynamics in the long run. But in the short term, the broad left agenda would likely widen the distance that already exists.
We should also note that Trump’s white working class is a bit of a myth. More importantly, it’s not clear whether Trump’s working class voters even exist. “Better-off white people in places that are doing poorly” seems more on point as a description.
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