Friday, February 17, 2017

Tales of Woe From Misguided Voters

Mother Jones recently talked to cops and firefighters who voted overwhelmingly for Republicans in Iowa and are now shocked  to learn that Republicans are anti-union. Hundreds of helmeted firefighters have flooded the Statehouse in the last week and police officers and sheriffs have lined up at committee hearings to speak against it. They don’t trust that this carve-out for their jobs will last long, nor do many of them feel it’s appropriate to deny the bargaining rights they have to fellow workers who have also had them for over 40 years.

The New York Times tells the story of farmers in the Central Valley of California who were counting on the election of Donald J. Trump.  His message of reducing regulations and taxes appealed to this Republican stronghold, one of Mr. Trump’s strongest bases of support in the state.

As for his promises about cracking down on illegal immigrants, many assumed Trump’s pledges were mostly just talk. But barely weeks into his administration,  Trump has signed executive orders that have upended the country’s immigration laws. Now farmers are deeply alarmed about what the new policies could mean for their workers, most of whom are unauthorized, and the businesses that depend on them.

CNN documented the story of Donna Coomer, who raised three children on a minimum-wage job and a lot of prayer. She voted for Obama but says she was "really disappointed" by him.  The fact that the unemployment rate in her small county in Kentucky dropped from 10.9% to 7.2% under Obama matters none. 

She thanks God daily that President Trump was elected. Her message to him is simple: Bring back jobs and raise the minimum wage.  Vast numbers of struggling works in Kentucky and Michigan like Donna voted for Trump in the hopes that he would help workers and raise wages.  Those hopes are fading fast. 

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