Lifelong Democrats have started a movement to convert fellow party members away from Hillary Clinton and into the voting booth for Donald Trump.
Christian Rickers is the director of the Trumpocrats PAC, which was started to help reach fellow Democrats to convince them to abandon Hillary Clinton this year. Many of these Trumpocrats have been Democrats for their entire life, and don’t intend on actually switching to the GOP anytime soon, but they have been inspired by Trump’s message of better trade deals and bringing jobs back to America.
Perhaps we are seeing the start of the new “Reagan Democrats” of our generation, average citizens who have realized the flaws in their party’s choice of candidate this year and are switching sides. These voters have felt that the Democratic party has abandoned them, similar to the way many Republicans feel this year, and see in Trump a candidate who transcends party lines to do what’s right for the America worker.
The Trumpocrats PAC intends to tour the rust belt states, and especially focus on the swing states of Virginia, Pennsylvania and Ohio. These are all states where many blue collar Democrats have suffered job loses due to Bill Clinton’s NAFTA, and even more so in what will be Hillary Clinton’s TPP if she gets elected.
They could prove a powerful force for Trump in these swing states, finding many like-minded voters who feel equally disenfranchised by the Democratic party.
Breitbart News reports:
NEW YORK CITY, New York — Meet the “Trumpocrats,” or so the sizable collection of lifelong Democrats breaking with their party because of their disgust with nominee for president Hillary Rodham Clinton and supporting instead Republican nominee Donald J. Trump call themselves.
Christian Rickers, the Virginia-based executive director of the Trumpocrats PAC—a Super PAC designed to help his like-minded lifelong Democrats abandon the sinking Democratic ship due to Hillary Clinton’s nomination and join the Trump movement—walked Breitbart News through why he is leading the effort among Democrats who support Trump for president.
Rickers’ argument centers on trade policy, and Trump’s ardent opposition to the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) that Clinton supported publicly more than 40 times but now claims she opposes. He points back to Bill Clinton’s backing of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) from his time as president, and Rickers says Democrats everywhere should be terrified of how much further Hillary Clinton would go if she’s elected president.
Rickers said in a phone interview:
I’m a lifelong Democrat, really since I was a little kid, and I still am a Democrat. But the Clintons—for instance, where I am from, my hometown, when I was a kid we had 15 manufacturing plants and we now have one. Nobody does anything there anymore, and that’s the same thing happening in a lot of small towns across the country really. The Clintons are really the cause of this, the cause of manufacturing going overseas with NAFTA and the trade deals and all of that. Donald Trump, he says a lot of crazy sh*t, but the one thing that he does say, that he really does want to do something about that and that he wants to protect our people with better trade policies and new trade policies.
On the Trumpocrats PAC website is a video of David “Mudcat” Saunders, another lifelong Democrat, talking with Fox News.
“I’m a Democrat,” Saunders, who worked for many prominent national Democrats over his career, says in the interview video. “I believe in the two founding principles of Jacksonian Democracy, social justice and economic fairness. Right now, I think that the Democratic Party—my great party—has got away from some of this.”
At the end of the video is the clear statement: Saunders is voting for Trump and he’s calling on his fellow Democrats to do the same.
THE CORE ARGUMENT
If Hillary Clinton is elected, and not Donald Trump, Rickers says that income inequality—and particularly the “gap” between “the rich and the poor” will get worse. Clinton’s refusal to focus on issues that matter to middle class Americans of all political stripes—including Democrats—is why Rickers is calling on Democrats nationwide to join him in a push to elect Donald Trump president of the United States. Rickers said:
Otherwise, the gap is going to continue to increase between the rich and the poor because a lot of people don’t have the ability now to rise up whether they’re underemployed or facing hard times. Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton is talking about Planned Parenthood or whatever—which is all great, but that’s not what we need. We need people to be self-sufficient and feed their families. Trump speaks to that, and there are people all across this country who are fed up with it—obviously, that’s what this election is kind of all about. You have party registrations switching by the tens of thousands in Ohio and Pennsylvania and elsewhere, and there’s a lot of people—they don’t want to be Republicans, but they don’t like either party anymore. We’re going to give them a place or organize out of, you know? A home, if you will.
Saunders said in the Fox interview that his party “used to stand for working people,” but “Hillary Clinton’s record—NAFTA, SHAFTA, favored nation status for China, Glass-Steagall, I mean we could go on and on and on—she’s not been a friend of rural America and rural America knows that and it’s shining in the primaries and caucuses. It’s a huge ABC feeling out here, Anybody But Clinton.”
Saunders said that the Democrats “seem intent to work on social issues, and while social issues are important, I don’t like them used as wedges.”
“We need to deal with the economy, and economic fairness is the number one issue,” Saunders told Fox News for the package interview Harris Faulkner ran recently. “In every poll you’ve seen done, the Democrats have gotten away from it. Now, of course, they’ve got a terrible spokesperson in Hillary Clinton.
Faulkner’s package on Fox News quotes Democrats from rural Virginia working at a roadside stand selling “Make America Great Again” gear, noting they’re voting for Trump.
These forgotten Democrats all across America haven’t voted for a Republican en masse since Ronald Reagan was the GOP nominee, when he won two landslide elections in 1980 and 1984, and Rickers says they don’t want to become part of the Republican Party—and certainly won’t start donating to the Republican National Committee (RNC). But he does expect that by the thousands they will get involved in the political process in places like Western and Central Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Virginia, among other places, in an effort to elect Donald Trump. And his PAC is going to provide a place for them to do it. He’s already seeing Democrats—activists on the local level, and city councilmen and even mayors and more local officials—breaking for Trump and expects more as Clinton’s corruption, especially with the Clinton Foundation, continues to be exposed.
Rickers told Breitbart News:
They don’t want to give money to the RNC, but they might be interested in making some phone calls or putting up signs or going through the Rust Belt on a bus tour to drum up support among blue collar folks and organize some like-minded people for Trump. Well I think you have a—there’s a lot of that going in the I’d say Wisconsin to more Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania and Virginia, that have actually come out publicly. We’ve actually been in contact with a lot of, several elected officials—mayors and around the Cleveland area where there have a lot of Democrats crossing over, and up in the mining valley where they’re just flat out switching. There have been op-eds about it, you know.
Billy Bova, another lifelong Democratic operative from Mississippi who is supportive of the effort, told Breitbart News that the answer for Democrats who feel Hillary Clinton does not support them is to back Donald Trump for president. Bova said in an email:
If you have historically been a working class, middle class person in areas of America that produced good paying, blue collar factory jobs, white collar factory related jobs, small business jobs in your towns around the plants and factories, it would be hard not to support a Trumpocrats effort in electing Donald Trump! Historically, many regular-working Democratic voters have always been most interested in a candidate that supports economic issues, not so much social issues, but bottom-line pocketbook, kitchen table money issues that can pay their bills and help their children. Trump shoots directly at their pocketbooks, gives them hope for a better future.
Bova added that Trump’s support for protecting Americans’ hard earned benefits like Social Security and Medicare—things that Americans, he says, can’t trust Hillary Clinton with—is why his fellow Democrats should back him for president. He said:
These same folks, I believe, have been assured that Trump will also protect and seek to strengthen their Social Security and Medicare benefits, and finally, after 20 to 30 years, put their lives back on a level playing field by undoing the very so called free-trade, world-trade, global-trade agreements that that hollowed-out their jobs, their families, their communities, their businesses. That is a powerful reason, a survival reason, for them to want to vote to elect Trump President.