A true political thunderstorm is sweeping through the Republican Party these days, following the KKK endorsement received by the GOP front-runner Donald Trump. The critiques, however, should probably not surprise anybody.
Is the GOP against Trump?
They are coming from the establishment Republicans, the people who were never fans of Donald Trump to begin with. And they are coming from his fellow candidates who have every reason to want to see his image trampled.
The New York millionaire’s damage control in the wake of the controversial KKK endorsement is not helping him either. Instead of disavowing David Duke’s endorsement, he solely gave a gentle critique of it, which he later blamed on faulty equipment and indirectly on the media.
Donald Trump has already been confronted about his failure to disavow the KKK endorsement. One of the assumed reasons was that the Trump family actually has connections to the Klan spanning several generations, with Donald Trump’s father being arrested back in 1927 after a KKK riot in Queens, New York.
The real-estate tycoon has denied that his father actually had any part to play in that riot or that he was actually present at the events at all. Although records contradict his statement, it is hard to assess facts from almost one century ago. The things that can be assessed, however, are the voting pool mobilized by Donald Trump’s campaign and the policies which he has brought forward. By now, the controversial measures of building a wall at the border with Mexico and banning Muslims from entering the United States are probably known to everybody.
The front-runner’s policy seems very KKK-friendly
Both of these measures are targeting specific ethnic categories. Both are discriminatory and in line with the KKK’s policies. This is not to say that Donald Trump is a supporter of the Ku Klux Klan or that he desired the KKK endorsement. But it should be plain to see why such rhetoric would attract the support of the white supremacist terrorist organization.
The second thing that should be considered here is that the majority of Donald Trump’s voting pool consists of low-income people from the South and industrialized areas of the North, people with lower levels of education. These are the people that would be most susceptible to the Klan’s message.
The above should be put into context. Donald Trump’s policies against certain ethnic groups are actually nothing new on the Republican table. While they have not necessarily been presented in the same manner in the past, they are not at all foreign to conservative policy. Indeed, Republicans have fought against ideas like illegal immigration, political correctness, and social safety net platforms for many ages.
The majority of his supporters are against minorities
Put this in the context of slowly decaying middle and working classes, and it is not hard to see how Donald Trump’s racially biased policies have attracted 49% of the Republican electorate, according to The Washington Post. These 49% are the people who actually believe that expelling minorities from the USA will create job opportunities for the impoverished white Americans.
It remains to be seen how Donald Trump’s campaign will recover from the backlash created by the KKK endorsement. It also remains to be seen if this will actually hurt his popularity at all.