A simple message to President Trump’s supporters: He doesn’t like you. In fact, you disgust him. Well, not all of you. The rich and powerful, he likes. If you’re on TV on a regular basis, your net worth is at least eight figures, or you live in a glitzy zip code, he likes you. He fawns over those supporters and wants to be their friend.
The rest of you though, especially those who live in rural areas or have no college degree — let’s face it, he hates you.
How do we know this? One of Vice President Pence’s former top aides, Olivia Troye, shot a video last week that was very critical of how Trump has handled the coronavirus pandemic. In it, she notes that Trump considered that “maybe this Covid thing is a good thing. I don’t like shaking hands with people. [Now] I don’t have to shake hands with these disgusting people.”
Or just look at what he’s said behind closed doors about American troops. To Trump, those who died in service of the country are “losers” and “suckers.” More generally, those who serve the country are people the President just can never understand. That they would risk their lives for the country rather than do anything for personal gain is something that is beyond Trump’s comprehension. They baffle him.
Trump doesn’t reserve his disdain for the nameless generic soldier. He publicly said, when talking about war hero former Senator John McCain, “I like people who weren’t captured” and then called him a “fucking loser” after he died. Trump also called former President George H.W. Bush a “loser” because he was shot down as a Navy pilot in World War II.
Trump’s hatred isn’t just reserved for those in the military; it extends to his supporters who go to his rallies. Which takes us back to a long-standing issue with Donald Trump — his consistent refusal to fairly pay people who work for him. This has been a frequent complaint from contractors and employees of him, so much so that he’s been sued repeatedly over the hundreds of people he has refused to pay. Who are these people? The working class that he says he wants to represent. He doesn’t pay them because he is confident he can get away with stiffing them.
To Trump’s credit, despite seeming to put his foot in his mouth on a regular basis, he doesn’t say publicly what he really thinks about his supporters. But does he need to? Can you think of any picture you’ve seen of the President looking like he’s enjoying time with his regular-folks supporters other than when he’s pontificating at them during his rallies? We see pictures of him enjoying time in his gold-clad apartment in Trump Towers, Mar-a-Lago and his elite list of guests, playing golf with other famous people. But with regular voters? Never.
This is the kind of thing that has saddled Democratic candidates in the past. John Kerry was ridiculed as someone voters would never want to have a beer with, especially compared to down-to-earth George Bush. President Obama was lambasted for preferring Dijon mustard, something that was portrayed as disrespectful to the average American, who must only like yellow mustard. And Hillary Clinton was brutally attacked for letting slip that she thought that half of Trump’s supporters were “basket of deplorables.”
Clinton’s comments, though, were about Trump supporters’ beliefs. She was attacking racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, Islamaphobia, and more. Those people, according to Clinton, were deplorable. And it’s a fact that a big chunk of Trump’s supporters hold these beliefs, which is why Clinton made this comment.
Trump’s hatred for his supporters, though, has nothing to do with beliefs. It has to do with the basic fact that he thinks most of his supporters are beneath him — intellectually, socially, economically. He wants nothing to do with them … other than get their praise and votes.
Howard Stern gave us virtually the same diagnosis back in May: “The oddity in all of this is the people Trump despises most, love him the most. The people who are voting for Trump for the most part . . . he wouldn’t even let them in a fucking hotel. He’d be disgusted by them. Go to Mar-a-Lago, see if there’s any people who look like you. I’m talking to you in the audience. The Trump voter who idolizes the guy, he despises you.”
Stern was talking based on his personal knowledge of Donald Trump for decades. But now, with what has been revealed by people who talk with Trump behind closed doors, we know that Trump talks this way too.
Listen to his words. Pay attention to his actions. Unless you’re rich and famous, he hates you because you disgust him.