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Saturday, January 28, 2017

A big beautiful basket of hate

by digby

Some lovely Real Americans lovin' them some Trump:
The challenge Annette Cottrell pondered was how to grade President Trump’s stormy first full week on the job. A trade war bubbling up with Mexico. A divisive border wall. A ban on refugees from war-torn countries. Brawls with the news media and national parks.

“I’d give him an A-plus,” Ms. Cottrell, 38, said from her salon, Mane Attraction, on Main Street here in the seat of a conservative Ohio county of pastures and maple groves where Mr. Trump won 70 percent of the vote. “He’s doing what he said he was going to be doing.”

So, about that head-spinning week. Mr. Trump drew a torrent of criticism after pressing a series of falsehoods about voter fraud, the size of the crowd at his inauguration and his attacks on the intelligence community. His rapid-fire executive actions reversing years of policy on immigration, abortion and the environment left his critics seething and fearful and liberal opponents preparing a volley of legal challenges to blunt them.

But in more than two dozen interviews this week, voters who helped hand Mr. Trump the presidency — die-hards and reluctant supporters alike — were cheering from their living rooms, offices and diners across America as they saw the outlines of a new conservative era in government fast taking shape, even if they were still a little uneasy about the man doing the shaping.

Yes, they said, Mr. Trump should tone down his tweets and rein in what they gently called his impulse toward “exaggeration.”

“Honestly, he sometimes needs to shut up,” said Joshua Wade, 24, of Ann Arbor, Mich., a state that had not supported a Republican for president since George Bush in 1988. “Just do what we elected you to do. We won. Drop the inauguration stuff. It’s fine.”

Gun rights top Mr. Wade’s wish list for the new administration. He wants Supreme Court nominees friendly to gun owners and laws that extend concealed-carry rights across state lines. He said he had been encouraged that Mr. Trump took swift action on some campaign promises during his early days in office.

“There’s no doubt: He’s good at showmanship,” said Mr. Wade, a registered Republican. “But I think this first week is proving he’s capable of following through on that with real action.”

But what appeals to supporters may be turning off independents. A Quinnipiac University poll released on Thursday gave Mr. Trump only a 36 percent job approval rating and found that majorities of people surveyed said he was neither honest nor levelheaded.

Still, Trump voters interviewed said they cared little if the president spouted off on Twitter because he was issuing the kind of executive actions many had long craved — freezing federal grant money for environmental research, banning foreign aid for groups that give abortion counseling and cutting off immigration from several Muslim-majority nations.

“Trump’s done more in five days than Obama did in eight years,” said Doug Cooperrider, 58, who works in construction repairing bridges and roads around central Ohio.

The bar at Boondocks, where Mr. Cooperrider dug into a B.L.T. sandwich on a sleety morning, sits about 1,900 miles from the Arizona deserts where sections of the multibillion-dollar border wall may rise. The Hispanic population is tiny in this overwhelmingly white county of 35,000, and it has grown only 0.3 percent in the past five years.

Still, people here said they felt as if immigration had undercut wages for construction workers in the area. One man said he was uneasy about the longstanding Somali community in Columbus, about an hour’s drive south. Several embraced Mr. Trump’s directives that limited new refugees, ordered up the border wall and cut off federal grant money to cities labeled sanctuaries for immigrants.

“I’m 100 percent behind the wall,” said Ms. Cottrell, the salon owner. “If he asked me to lay the first brick, I’d sign up. I’m tired of them being here illegally and cutthroating the rest of us.”

There's more but I couldn't stomach it.

I know I am supposed to feel empathy for these people. But right now I really have to dig deeply to find it. But I will. I understand that it's my fault that they hate everyone who isn't exctly like them and I need to change my ways. Working on it ...