Saturday, October 21, 2017

Depraved Democrat Attacks Gold Star Father Gen. Kelly, Calling Him A “Racist”


By Frances Rice

Just when we thought Democrats could not go any lower, Democrat Rep. Frederica Wilson sunk even deeper into the race mongering muck by accusing Chief of Staff John Kelly, a retired general and a Gold Star father, of being a “racist.”

The sordid details are in the below article.

With each outrage of Democrats playing the race card to destroy people with whom they disagree, it becomes even more clear that, as opined by the editorial board of the Washington Times, “Baseless accusations of racism are the new last refuge of scoundrels.”


New York Post

By Post Editorial Board
We’re trying to figure out what’s racist about the term “empty barrel.” Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-Fla.) says it is, but Google isn’t showing us how. Nor can we see why she had to go there.
Wilson had slammed President Trump’s words in a phone call to the family of Sgt. La David Johnson, killed in Niger.
Chief of Staff John Kelly (who had coached Trump on what to say, and is himself a Gold Star father) vented his anger at Wilson for politicizing the sacred subject of these calls, likening the congresswoman to an “empty barrel.”
For what it’s worth, video suggests he was wrong in hitting her over her remarks at a 2015 FBI ceremony. [Note: Kelly said Wilson crowed about helping "fund" the FBI building when she actually crowed about helping "name" the FBI building.] If she had to keep this flap going, she could’ve focused on that [irrelevant, minor point].
Instead, the congresswoman (who has reportedly bragged of becoming a “rock star” in this woeful mess) played the race card, claiming “empty barrel” is “a racist term. . . . We looked it up in the dictionary.”
Which one? Our search led to the saying, “An empty barrel makes the most noise,” which says is invoked “to minimize insult and downgrade a very loud critic” — and which Kelly used before, when a congressman called him “a disgrace to the uniform.”
A reflexive resort to crying “racism” does not serve Democrats well. As Andrew Sullivan notes in New York magazine, many on the left now even say that national borders are themselves racist — a lunatic claim sure to drive moderate voters into Republican arms.
There are no winners here, but Wilson seems determined to be the biggest loser.

Hillary implicated in Russia probe

Clinton Foundation benefited amid shady uranium deal

Hey, mainstream media! We finally found it — a real Russia scandal involving the 2016 election. With actual evidence of criminal wrongdoing and everything! So come on, New York Times, CNN and MSNBC, let’s ...
Hey, where’d everybody go?
For months I’ve been doing TV hits as the token conservative and getting grilled over “Russiagate.” Did Donald Trump and the Russians collude to steal the election from Hillary Clinton?
Well, the wait is over. The Hill and Circa media have broken a story the FBI spent years investigating — and actually sent someone to jail over — involving bribery, blackmail and corruption by Russians who wanted to buy up a big chunk of the world’s uranium, located here in North America.
We’ve known for a while that then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton both approved the deal and her family foundation received millions of dollars from Russians backing the deal. That’s one reason the nickname “Crooked Hillary” stuck.
What we didn’t know until now is that “the FBI had evidence as early as 2009 that Russian operatives used bribes, kickbacks and other dirty tactics to expand Moscow’s atomic energy footprint in the U.S.,” according to Fox News.
Not only did Hillary’s State Department approve Russia’s purchase of Uranium One — handing 20 percent of the U.S. uranium supply over to allies of Vladimir Putin — but the Obama FBI and Department of Justice let it happen unchallenged. All while the Clinton Foundation collected millions in “donations” from these Russians, and Bill Clinton was paid $500,000 by a Russian investment bank to give a speech in Moscow.
Then there’s the story of the Donald Trump dossier.
You may have heard about a dossier of Donald Trump dirt gathered from Russian sources by a former British intelligence agent. The content is extremely inappropriate for a family newspaper (yes, even in my column — so you know it’s bad) and almost nothing in it has ever been verified.
That dossier was ordered by an opposition research outfit called Fusion GPS, which got its money from various opponents of Donald Trump. What does that have to do with Russia? From The Wall Street Journal:
“Fusion by its own admission has worked in the past on a lobby campaign for a Russian company with ties to the Kremlin. Investigators want to know if ... foreign actors had anything to do with the commissioning or production of the Steele dossier.”
Good question, particularly since it appears this now-debunked dossier was used as evidence by the FBI to get the wiretaps on the Trump campaign that started this entire mess in the first place. In other words, it’s possible that the entire #RussiaGate story started with “evidence” planted by the Russians themselves.
Now that’s a scandal! It’s just not the one the media or Democrats wanted. So the media mostly shrug as Russia-friendly Fusion GPS ignores congressional subpoenas. Even the FBI’s shocking decision to refuse to cooperate is largely ignored by the media.
Why would the FBI try to shut down this probe? It could be related to the fact that the Obama Justice Department had actually considered putting the British spook on the taxpayers’ dime to continue his work digging up dirt on The Donald. Apparently someone remembered at the last minute that America is not, in fact, a banana republic and we don’t sic government agents on our political enemies.
Do we?
If the media really cared about Russia’s role in the 2016 election, they would be all over this story. It has everything they need: Paper trail, facts, actual criminal behavior. All the “collusion” story has is politics and partisan speculation.
Care to guess which one will be leading the evening news?
Michael Graham is a regular contributor to the Boston Herald. Follow him on Twitter @IAMMGraham.


The Fusion Collusion
Democrats are trying to protect the firm’s secrets—so the GOP should keep digging.

By Kimberley A. Strassel
Washington is obsessed with the word “collusion” but has little understanding of its true meaning. The confusion might explain why D.C. has missed the big story of collusion between Fusion GPS and the Democratic Party.
To read the headlines, a poor, beleaguered opposition-research firm was humiliated and constitutionally abused this week by partisan Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee. Fusion’s lawyers sent a 17-page letter to the committee’s chairman, Rep. Devin Nunes, accusing him of misdeeds, declaring his subpoenas invalid, and invoking a supposed First Amendment right to silence. Yet the firm’s founders, the story went, were hauled in nonetheless and forced to plead the Fifth. “No American should experience the indignity that occurred today,” Fusion’s lawyer, Joshua Levy, declared.
Fusion is known as a ruthless firm that excels in smear jobs, but few have noticed the operation it’s conducting against the lawmakers investigating it. The false accusations against Mr. Nunes—that he’s acting unethically and extralegally, that he’s sabotaging the Russia probe—are classic.
This is a firm that in 2012 was paid to dig through the divorce records of a Mitt Romney donor. It’s a firm that human-rights activist Thor Halvorssen testified was hired to spread malicious rumors about him. It’s a firm that financier Bill Browder testified worked to delegitimize his efforts to get justice for Sergei Magnitsky, a lawyer beaten to death in a Russian prison.
It’s the firm behind the infamous “dossier” accusing Donald Trump of not just unbecoming behavior but also colluding with Russia. Republicans are investigating whether the Fusion dossier was influenced by Russians, and whether American law enforcement relied on that disinformation for its own probe.
But Fusion’s secret weapon in its latest operation is the Democratic Party, whose most powerful members have made protecting Fusion’s secrets their highest priority. Senate Democrats invoked a parliamentary maneuver in July to block temporarily Mr. Browder’s public testimony. Rep. Adam Schiff, the Democratic ranking member on the Intelligence Committee, has been engineering flaps to undercut and obstruct Mr. Nunes’s investigation. Democrats on the House Ethics Committee have deep-sixed what was meant to be a brief inquiry to clear Mr. Nunes so as to keep him sidelined.
Then there is the intel committee’s meeting this week. Despite the spin, forcing Fusion to appear was Republicans’ only recourse after months of stonewalling. Fusion’s letter ludicrously claimed that Mr. Nunes’s subpoenas were invalid, which essentially forced the committee to show otherwise. It was a question of authority.
Florida Rep. Tom Rooney put the Fusion attendees through a series of questions not out of spite but to clarify finally just what topics the firm is refusing to talk about. The Fifth Amendment doesn’t provide protection against answering all questions. It only protects against providing self-incriminating evidence. It is therefore revealing that Fusion took the Fifth on every topic—from its relationship with British spook Christopher Steele, to the history of its work, to its role in the dossier.
The untold story is the Democrats’ unprecedented behavior. Mr. Rooney had barely started when committee staffers for Mr. Schiff interrupted, accused him of badgering witnesses, and suggested he was acting unethically. Jaws dropped. Staff do not interrupt congressmen. They do not accuse them of misbehavior. And they certainly do not act as defense attorneys for witnesses. No Democratic lawmakers had bothered to come to the hearing to police this circus, and Mr. Rooney told me that he “won’t be doing any more interviews without a member from the minority present.”
Private-sector lawyers also tend not to accuse congressmen of unethical behavior, as Mr. Levy did in his letter to Mr. Nunes. But Fusion’s legal eagle must feel safe. He’s former general counsel to the Senate’s minority leader, Chuck Schumer. He has also, I’m told by people familiar with the committee’s activities, more than once possessed information that he would have had no earthly means of knowing, since it was secret committee business. Consider that: Democratic members of Congress or their staff providing sensitive details of an investigation to a company to which the committee has given subpoenas.
The Washington narrative is focused on special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe. But the ferocious pushback and unseemly tactics from Democrats suggest they are growing worried. Maybe the real story is that Democrats worked with an opposition-research firm that has some alarming ties to Russia and potentially facilitated a disinformation campaign during a presidential election.
The media has its own conflict of interest, since it would prefer nobody find out about its years of, ahem, colluding with Fusion. Don’t expect any investigative reporting. But also don’t believe the stories about GOP harassment. The ferocity of the Fusion-Democrat campaign is proof Republicans are looking in the right place.


The Comey conundrum
By Scott Johnson

Former FBI Director James Comey knows how to play the G-Man as a straight arrow on television, but he’s a cynical Washington operator in real life. His orchestration of the appointment of his friend Robert Mueller as special counsel to take down President Trump in the fictitious Russia collusion scandal (and all its penumbras and radiations) represents a striking case in point. Comey’s hand in it should discredit the Mueller operation all by itself.
Comey is a sort of Rosetta stone to the Russia investigation. Interpreting him and his works might allow one to decipher the hieroglyphics. I’m not saying I’ve done it or that I can do it. Comey is way over my head, but I’m not alone. Few have the requisite background, knowledge, expertise and motivation to do it. Yet it needs to be done.
It is reported, for example, that Comey insisted on inserting the infamous GPS Fusion Trump Dossier in January’s final intelligence community report on Russian meddling in the election. Its inclusion lent it a credibility that it appears not to deserve, to put it mildly.
As we all know by now, there is something funny about that Trump Dossier. Two knowledgeable witnesses from the company responsible for it (GPS Fusion) asserted their right agains self-incrimination before the House Intelligence Committee yesterday.
This week Comey emerged as a principal in the ed as a key player in the bombshell story of the Russian bribery plot behind the sale of Uranium One to the friends of Vladimir Putin. The plot was uncovered by the FBI under Comey’s directorship. yet the FBI’s informant in the case was barred by Obama’s Department of Justice from testifying to Congress about it.
John Solomon and Allison report today in the Hill: “The information the [FBI informant] possesses includes specific allegations that Russian executives made to him about how they facilitated the Obama administration’s 2010 approval of the Uranium One deal and sent millions of dollars in Russian nuclear funds to the U.S. to an entity assisting Bill Clinton’s foundation. At the time, Hillary Clinton was serving as secretary of State on the government panel that approved the deal, the [informant’s] lawyer [Victoria Toensing] said.” When do we get to hear from James Comey on this story?
This week we learned that an early draft of Comey’s absolution of Hillary Clinton for violating the Espionage Act is dated May 2, 2016. The draft is entirely redacted; the date appears in a related email.
Comey testified to Congress that it was then Attorney General Loretta Lynch tarmac meeting with Bill Clinton that compelled him to seize control of the prosecutorial decision from the Department of Justice. That meeting took place in Phoenix on June 27, 2016. The timeline undermines Comey’s testimony. It’s almost enough to make you think we’re dealing with a character whose shadiness rivals the Clintons’ own.
NOTE: I had completely forgotten the video of Comey that I clipped for “Comey: ‘I am not a weasel” (below). Ed Driscoll reminded me of it here. As for Comey, the gentleman doth protest too much, methinks.

    Video at: 

Friday, October 20, 2017

Senate passes budget framework for tax reform

By Samuel Chamberlain

Senate Republicans narrowly passed a $4 trillion budget plan Thursday, taking their first big step toward a tax reform package promised by President Donald Trump.

Approval of the nonbinding plan allows the Senate to use a special process known as "budget reconciliation" that would forestall a Democratic filibuster.

"Tonight we completed the first step towards replacing our broken tax code by passing a comprehensive, fiscally responsible budget that will help put the federal government on a path to balance," said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. "We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to replace a failing tax code that holds Americans back with one that works for them."
The Senate plan, approved on a 51-49 vote, calls for $473 billion in cuts from Medicare over 10 years and more than $1 trillion from Medicaid.
If fully implemented, the plan would cut spending by more than $5 trillion over the next 10 years, with an average of approximately $540 billion per year over the life of the plan, according to a Congressional Budget Office estimate.
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., was the only Republican to vote against the bill, joining all 46 Democrats and two independents.
"We can’t spend our way to prosperity," Paul said in a statement. "I will fight for the biggest, boldest tax cut we can pass, but I could not in good conscience vote for a budget that ignores spending caps that have been the law of the land for years and simply pretend it didn’t matter."
Sen. Thad Cochran, R-Miss., returned to Washington after receiving treatment for urological problems to vote for the measure. Other Republican moderates -- including Sens. John McCain of Arizona, Bob Corker of Tennessee, and Susan Collins of Maine -- backed the effort.

Pleased to vote for #budget blueprint giving Congress an opportunity to pass comprehensive #taxreform. 
Tax reform, always a top item on the GOP agenda, has taken on even greater urgency with the failure of the party to carry out its longstanding promise to dismantle former President Barack Obama's signature health care law. Republicans have said failure on taxes would be politically devastating in next year's midterm elections when control of the House and Senate are at stake.

The House passed its version of the budget plan last week. It calls for tax cuts that don't add to the deficit and would pair the tax rewrite measure with $200 billion in spending cuts over the coming decade. Both plans include a provision to permit oil and gas exploration in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., blasted the GOP framework as "nasty and backwards."
"It shifts the burden from the wealthy and puts it squarely on the back of the middle class, and blows a hole in the deficit to boot," Schumer said in a statement. "I think it will go down in history as one of the worst budgets Congress has ever passed."
Fox News' Chad Pergram and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Kelly Rips Democratic Rep’s ‘Selfish’ Behavior In Attacking Trump’s Call To Army Widow

By Matt Vespa

Gen. Kelly lost his son, who was serving his country, but now he's working for Trump, so denigrate, shame, and smear him. I know it's nothing new. I know it's par for the course, but it's still appalling that progressives say they 'respect the uniform,' but have zero problems trashing those who disagree with them. No wonder there is such a partisan divide. Would you sit next to a person like this? I certainly wouldn't. It's not okay to go after Gold Star families unless they're not our type of family, says Liberal America. That's being shown today.
The Trump White House has been bombarded with criticism over President Trump’s remarks to the widow of Army Sgt. La David Johnson, Myeshia Johnson. Sgt. Johnson was killed in an ambush by ISIS forces in Niger. Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL) was able to overhear the call to Mrs. Johnson and said she didn’t hear the whole call, but heard him say that the late sergeant knew “what he signed up for, but I guess it still hurts."
White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, a former general in the U.S. Marine Corps, handled the press briefing today. Kelly started off by explaining what happens when a serviceperson in the U.S. military has been killed in combat, and the process of returning the body back home.
Mr. Kelly said he recommended to President Trump to not call because there is no perfect way to make that call. There is nothing the president can say to ease the awful burden that has befallen the family of the serviceman or woman who has died. Kelly was in on the phone call. He said what was transmitted to Mrs. Johnson was that her husband was "a brave man, a fallen hero, he knew what he was getting himself into because he enlisted—there is no reason to enlist—and he was where he wanted to be, exactly where he wanted to be, with exactly the people he wanted to be with when his life was taken.”
That was the message. Kelly said he was “stunned” that a member of Congress listened in on that conversation, lamenting how there is nothing sacred, listing Gold Star families, religion, and the dignity of life as things that have been sacrificed at the altar of politics.
“I just thought the selfless devotion that brings a man or woman to die on the battlefield—I just thought that might be sacred,” he added. Kelly added that upon seeing what Rep. Wilson was doing, the only thing he could do to collect his thoughts was go to Arlington National Cemetery for an hour and a half to be with the “finest men and women on this Earth.” He recalled seeing the stones on some of the graves that he put there for troops that had died following his orders on the battlefield.
He then slammed Wilson’s “selfish behavior,” while calling on the press to reel it back and maybe keep this act in our society sacred.  Kelly then took questions, but only from reporters who knew Gold Star families. Very few hands went up.
Rep. Wilson responded to this presser by saying, “John Kelly's trying to keep his job. He will say anything."
Here's the full transcript of Gen. Kelly's remarks:
JOHN F. KELLY: Well, thanks a lot. And it is a more serious note, so I just wanted to perhaps make more of a statement than an -- give more of an explanation in what amounts to be a traditional press interaction.
Most Americans don't know what happens when we lose one of soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, our Coast Guardsmen in combat. So let me tell you what happens:
Their buddies wrap them up in whatever passes as a shroud, puts them on a helicopter as a routine, and sends them home. Their first stop along the way is when they're packed in ice, typically at the airhead. And then they're flown to, usually, Europe where they're then packed in ice again and flown to Dover Air Force Base, where Dover takes care of the remains, embalms them, meticulously dresses them in their uniform with the medals that they've earned, the emblems of their service, and then puts them on another airplane linked up with a casualty officer escort that takes them home.
A very, very good movie to watch, if you haven't ever seen it, is "Taking Chance," where this is done in a movie -- HBO setting. Chance Phelps was killed under my command right next to me, and it's worth seeing that if you've never seen it.
So that's the process. While that's happening, a casualty officer typically goes to the home very early in the morning and waits for the first lights to come on. And then he knocks on the door; typically a mom and dad will answer, a wife. And if there is a wife, this is happening in two different places; if the parents are divorced, three different places. And the casualty officer proceeds to break the heart of a family member and stays with that family until -- well, for a long, long time, even after the internment. So that's what happens.
are these young men and women? They are the best 1 percent this country produces. Most of you, as Americans, don't know them. Many of you don't know anyone who knows any one of them. But they are the very best this country produces, and they volunteer to protect our country when there's nothing in our country anymore that seems to suggest that selfless service to the nation is not only appropriate, but required. But that's all right.
Who writes letters to the families? Typically, the company commander -- in my case, as a Marine -- the company commander, battalion commander, regimental commander, division commander, Secretary of Defense, typically the service chief, commandant of the Marine Corps, and the President typically writes a letter.
Typically, the only phone calls a family receives are the most important phone calls they could imagine, and that is from their buddies. In my case, hours after my son was killed, his friends were calling us from Afghanistan, telling us what a great guy he was. Those are the only phone calls that really mattered.
And yeah, the letters count, to a degree, but there's not much that really can take the edge off what a family member is going through.
So some Presidents have elected to call. All Presidents, I believe, have elected to send letters. If you elect to call a family like this, it is about the most difficult thing you could imagine. There's no perfect way to make that phone call.
When I took this job and talked to President Trump about how to do it, my first recommendation was he not do it because it's not the phone call that parents, family members are looking forward to. It's nice to do, in my opinion, in any event.
He asked me about previous Presidents, and I said, I can tell you that President Obama, who was my Commander-in-Chief when I was on active duty, did not call my family. That was not a criticism. That was just to simply say, I don't believe President Obama called. That's not a negative thing. I don't believe President Bush called in all cases. I don't believe any President, particularly when the casualty rates are very, very high -- that Presidents call. But I believe they all write.
So when I gave that explanation to our President three days ago, he elected to make phone calls in the cases of four young men who we lost in Niger at the earlier part of this month. But then he said, how do you make these calls? If you're not in the family, if you've never worn the uniform, if you've never been in combat, you can't even imagine how to make that call. I think he very bravely does make those calls.
The call in question that he made yesterday -- or day before yesterday now -- were to four family members, the four fallen. And remember, there's a next-of-kin designated by the individual. If he's married, that's typically the spouse. If he's not married, that's typically the parents unless the parents are divorced, and then he selects one of them. If he didn't get along with his parents, he’ll select a sibling. But the point is, the phone call is made to the next-of-kin only if the next-of-kin agrees to take the phone call. Sometimes they don't.
So a pre-call is made: The President of the United States or the commandant of the Marine Corps, or someone would like to call, will you accept the call? And typically, they all accept the call.
So he called four people the other day and expressed his condolences in the best way that he could. And he said to me, what do I say? I said to him, sir, there's nothing you can do to lighten the burden on these families.
Well, let me tell you what I told him. Let me tell you what my best friend, Joe Dunford, told me -- because he was my casualty officer. He said, Kel, he was doing exactly what he wanted to do when he was killed. He knew what he was getting into by joining that 1 percent. He knew what the possibilities were because we're at war. And when he died, in the four cases we're talking about, Niger, and my son's case in Afghanistan -- when he died, he was surrounded by the best men on this Earth: his friends.
That's what the President tried to say to four families the other day. I was stunned when I came to work yesterday morning, and broken-hearted at what I saw a member of Congress doing. A member of Congress who listened in on a phone call from the President of the United States to a young wife, and in his way tried to express that opinion -- that he's a brave man, a fallen hero, he knew what he was getting himself into because he enlisted. There's no reason to enlist; he enlisted. And he was where he wanted to be, exactly where he wanted to be, with exactly the people he wanted to be with when his life was taken.
That was the message. That was the message that was transmitted.
It stuns me that a member of Congress would have listened in on that conversation. Absolutely stuns me. And I thought at least that was sacred. You know, when I was a kid growing up, a lot of things were sacred in our country. Women were sacred, looked upon with great honor. That's obviously not the case anymore as we see from recent cases. Life -- the dignity of life -- is sacred. That's gone. Religion, that seems to be gone as well.
Gold Star families, I think that left in the convention over the summer. But I just thought -- the selfless devotion that brings a man or woman to die on the battlefield, I just thought that that might be sacred.
And when I listened to this woman and what she was saying, and what she was doing on TV, the only thing I could do to collect my thoughts was to go and walk among the finest men and women on this Earth. And you can always find them because they're in Arlington National Cemetery. I went over there for an hour-and-a-half, walked among the stones, some of whom I put there because they were doing what I told them to do when they were killed.
I'll end with this: In October -- April, rather, of 2015, I was still on active duty, and I went to the dedication of the new FBI field office in Miami. And it was dedicated to two men who were killed in a firefight in Miami against drug traffickers in 1986 -- a guy by the name of Grogan and Duke. Grogan almost retired, 53 years old; Duke, I think less than a year on the job. Anyways, they got in a gunfight and they were killed. Three other FBI agents were there, were wounded, and now retired. So we go down -- Jim Comey gave an absolutely brilliant memorial speech to those fallen men and to all of the men and women of the FBI who serve our country so well, and law enforcement so well.
There were family members there. Some of the children that were there were three or four years old when their dads were killed on that street in Miami-Dade. Three of the men that survived the fight were there, and gave a rendition of how brave those men were and how they gave their lives.
And a congresswoman stood up, and in the long tradition of empty barrels making the most noise, stood up there and all of that and talked about how she was instrumental in getting the funding for that building, and how she took care of her constituents because she got the money, and she just called up President Obama, and on that phone call he gave the money -- the $20 million -- to build the building. And she sat down, and we were stunned. Stunned that she had done it. Even for someone that is that empty a barrel, we were stunned.
But, you know, none of us went to the press and criticized. None of us stood up and were appalled. We just said, okay, fine.
So I still hope, as you write your stories, and I appeal to America, that let's not let this maybe last thing that's held sacred in our society -- a young man, young woman going out and giving his or her life for our country -- let's try to somehow keep that sacred. But it eroded a great deal yesterday by the selfish behavior of a member of Congress.
So I'm willing to take a question or two on this topic. Let me ask you this: Is anyone here a Gold Star parent or sibling? Does anyone here know a Gold Star parent or sibling?

George Soros Funded A Study Of White Working-Class Voters Who Support Trump. Here’s What He Found

By Eric Owens

 George Soros has pumped $18 billion into his Open Society Foundations that fuel anti-American groups and other left-wing causes - Getty Images

A recently-released research study sheds light on the values of white working-class voters in the United States and the reasons these voters strongly supported Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election.

Three researchers from three different universities authored the study, titled “White Working-Class Views on Belonging, Change, Identity and Immigration.”
The trio of researchers conducted the study by visiting four places between August 2016 and March 2017: Birmingham, Alabama; Dayton, Ohio; Tacoma, Washington; Phoenix, Arizona; and — for some reason — the New York City borough of Brooklyn.
The researchers spoke candidly with over 400 people who identify as members of the white working class.
Here is what they found:
In 2016, Trump was the ‘hope and change’ candidate for white working-class voters
The participants in the study say they view Trump as “strong” and “hardworking.”
The Trump campaign “personified an insurgent, anti-establishment rage against ‘politics as normal,'” according to the study participants.
“In many ways, Trump was the hope and change candidate in 2016, as Obama had been in 2008, albeit representing different constituencies.”
Some Trump voters say they were “appalled by” some of Trump’s statements during the campaign but “they valued that he was a ‘straight talker'” who appeared “‘direct’ and ‘honest’ in contrast with his opponents during the Republican primaries and the presidential campaign.”
Here’s how an interviewee in Birmingham phrased it:
“He’s honest for the most part…isn’t afraid to say anything and that’s the first time in my lifetime I have seen a politician say, ‘you know what, I don’t care. I’m going to say it.”
White working-class voters strongly favored Trump’s stance against illegal immigration and his promise to abandon the North American Free Trade Agreement. They believe the NAFTA agreement has been the cause of factory closures across the nation.
These voters also say they appreciated Trump’s many symbolic economic gestures — “for example: Trump donning a miner’s safety helmet” at June 2016 rally in West Virginia to promote coal production.
Trump hit a very deep, very raw cultural and economic nerve
Large swathes of Trump voters say they feel “disconnected and disrupted by the conflation of economic and cultural change,” according to the study.
“Trump’s message — ‘Make America Great Again’ — connected with white working-class communities who looked back at a golden past and hoped for a better future,” the authors of the study say.
Trump supporters - Getty Images
“The refrain ‘I feel like a stranger in my own community’ was repeated in each of the case study cities, lamenting the negative changes associated with increased levels of immigration and diversity as well as economic disruption.”

White working-class participants in the study speak of living “pay check to pay check” as a permanent economic reality. Economic crisis is always close. “The social mobility promised by the American Dream had been suspended and replaced by the lived experience of economic hardship.”
An interviewee in Phoenix frames the economic concerns this way:
“I am working hard enough to have the American dream but I don’t just have it. I am doing this whole living from pay check to pay check.”
White working-class voters also say they see previous eras as times when “crime was low and there was an expansive pipeline from school to work, which enabled the white working class to comfortably support their families. This nostalgia sits in jarring contrast with the current situation.”
Trump was able to tap into the economic and cultural angst of white working-class voters by speaking in terms of their values. “The sense that at long last someone had decided to talk about sensitive issues such as the impact of immigration on communities provided a basis for Trump to access a deep well of grievances and concerns.”
At the same time, the study found that many Trump-supporting members of the white working class hate Hillary Clinton much more than they approve of Trump.
Throngs of white working-class voters utterly detest Hillary Clinton
Many study participants describe Clinton as a duplicitous elitist who is “very much outside a core set of working-class values.”
“White working-class perspectives on Hillary Clinton ranged from visceral dislike to lukewarm support,” the researchers found. “Typically, the views expressed about her focused on being untrustworthy and dishonest, as well as accumulating a fortune from not working hard.”
Hillary Clinton - Getty Images
Study participants strongly condemned Clinton’s use of a private email server as “a blatant breach of the law.”

An interviewee from Brooklyn summarized the criticism:

“Anybody else she would have been in jail. I am telling you right now, she’s nothing but a disgrace to this country and if she wins it’s going to be disaster and it’s going to be the same thing all over again. Politics aside, I can’t stand it! I don’t like her…she’s very smug.”
Clinton’s description of some Trump supporters as “deplorable” also proved to be a huge mistake. “‘Deplorable’ became a form of cultural resistance against a sneering and out-of-touch elite.”
White working-class voters view themselves as hard workers who value honesty
The researchers found that white working-class voters have a huge variety of backgrounds, education levels and life experiences. Their incomes vary pretty considerably.
The common denominator among people who see themselves as members of the white working class is a shared set of values. These values include an ethic of hard work, honesty and charity. Also critically important is an ability to provide for your family without depending on welfare.
An interviewee in Phoenix defines some of the tenets of white working-class voters thusly:
“Working class values? Well, you put pride in your work or your profession. You try to do a good job, you try to have good attendance, good work ethics. You know you’re dependable.”
White working-class voters say they are politically aware. They read print media. They actively discuss politics. They watched the presidential debates.
Also, members of the white working class use the terms “working class” and “middle class” in an interchangeable way, according to the study. “Working class” is often their current status. “Middle class” is the status they aspire to attain.
White working-class voters are sick and tired of political correctness and identity politics
White working-class Trump supporters “feel muzzled” by politically correct dogma. They see political correctness “not as preventing abusive language related to race or gender” but instead as “a government and media campaign that prevents people from speaking in a direct way.”
“We can’t even say what we feel,” says a Tacoma interviewee who voted for Trump because “he’s actually saying this stuff that many people across America are thinking.”
Trump-supporting members of the white working class also despise identity politics and they perceive the Democratic Party “as the party of identity politics.”
“Some in our study had grown up in staunch Democrat families and had previously supported Democrat candidates,” the researchers explain. “Yet the view is that politicians are more interested in looking after communities of color than white working-class communities.”
The three professors behind the study do manage to accuse working-class Trump voters of secret racism. The researchers chide their study subjects for using “racially coded” language “by referencing crime, welfare dependency, and competition for housing and jobs.”
The researchers appear to perceive themselves as being above any “racially coded” language — even though the words “white,” “black,” “Hispanic,” “Latino,” “Asian,” “Chinese” and “Muslim” appear a grand total of 537 times in the study.
White working-class voters think ‘white privilege’ is a bunch of idiotic claptrap
An interesting dynamic in the study is the way in which the researchers desperately want to inject both race and the concept of “white privilege” into the study but the study participants just won’t have it.
The study participants describe “white privilege” as nonsense.
“Participants felt they were struggling because they lived paycheck to paycheck, had two or three jobs, and worked hard to put food on the table,” the researchers say. “Their limited economic means and lack of upward mobility did not seem like white privilege.”
White privilege at a clinic in Appalachia - Getty Images/John Moore
The white working-class study participants say they feel like their “whiteness” is “a disadvantage in terms of ‘reverse racism’ in the labor market, the preference for immigrants as the building blocks for economic recovery or the way that politicians discounted the contribution of white working-class groups in electoral politics.”

The several hundred participants in the study largely “focused on the ‘working’ of white working class.” The “white” part is definitively secondary to them. They aren’t racist, they said, and they aren’t interested in agonizing over race in the way that, say, many left-wing activists are.

“Whiteness was mostly unspoken among participants in the study,” the authors admit.
At the same time, the authors absolutely insist on the importance of “whiteness.” They argue that the lack of concern about race among the study participants can only mean that “white was nowhere and everywhere, especially in referring to social change brought about by newly arrived immigrants, or the growth of communities of color.”
“Immigrants and racial minorities were viewed largely as a racial ‘other’ first and were seen as being outside the working class,” the authors contend.
The study authors also frequently rely on a somewhat mysterious group of “key informers” and “key stakeholders” to pass judgment on the racial motives of white working-class people.
The study authors do offer some criticism of the “key informers” and “key stakeholders.”
“Our key stakeholders tended to view the white working class as having white privilege as well as being racist,” the authors say. “It will be challenging for city government and not-for-profits to get beyond this framework, and it may consolidate the view of white working-class residents that they are being left behind.”
White working-class voters strongly oppose illegal immigration
White working-class study participants say they are “not opposed to immigration.” They agree that immigration has “been hugely beneficial” to the United States.
However, the desire for law and order supersedes the benefits of immigration. Members of the white working class say they are greatly bothered that the initial act of illegal immigrants on American soil is to break the law, according to the study. They want “documented migration to continue and for people to be processed using legal channels so those who pose a security risk can be rejected.”
Immigration sign - Getty Images/Sandy Huffaker
“Resentment increases from white working-class people because, rather than addressing the problem of illegality, government appears to reward migrants by providing support services to ease integration,” the authors conclude.

Here’s an interviewee from Tacoma:
“Illegal says you’re breaking the damn law. Let’s do something about that. What are we going to do? We are going to give them some housing, we are going to give them some welfare checks….And who’s paying for it? Us! The working class.”
Immigration also takes a toll on the cultural fabric of white working-class communities. White working-class voters believe immigrants “do not follow protocols of established behaviors, norms, or codes.” Some research participants complain that immigrants “seem unwilling to speak English.”
“Getting to know people of different racial backgrounds was easier when racial minorities or foreign-born residents shared the working-class values,” the authors of the study note.
“The working class has been abandoned or exiled by the Democrats”
The three researchers who conducted the study are Stacy Harwood, a professor urban and regional planning at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign; Harris Beider, a visiting professor in Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs; and Kusminder Chahal, a researcher at Coventry University in England.
While the study’s primary stated goal is to provide a deeper understanding of the white working class, an unstated goal of the study is to help the American left and the Democratic Party recapture some meaningful chunk of the white working-class voting bloc.
“The working class has been abandoned or exiled by the Democrats,” the study flatly concludes.
“This project begins to identify some pathways and reframe the conversation,” Harwood said, according to a University of Illinois News Bureau press release.
Harwood’s Facebook likes include Racial Microaggressions at Illinois, Mexico Solidarity Network and Black Students for Revolution.
Beider, the visiting Columbia professor, observed that the white working class is very disparate group of people.
“There’s an assumption that they are a homogenous group, but there’s depth and diversity that’s not given credit,” he said.
The three authors of the study thank the U.S. branch of Soros’s Open Society Foundations “for funding this study.”
“Foundations such as Open Society work tirelessly” to promote social understanding, the researchers say. “In this process, the voices of white working-class people need to be heard by institutions and other communities.
This study has demonstrated that they feel politically marginalized, culturally isolated, and economically vulnerable. As a consequence of their material reality, talking about white privilege to working class white people who are working two or three jobs to keep their families fed and a roof over their heads will be a difficult task.”