How will they change their minds?

Trump voters made an enormous mistake, for their country and even for themselves. We can’t force them to see it, but maybe we can make it easier for them figure it out on their own.


In the summer of 2003, the Iraq War was popular. Sure, somewhere between a third and half of the public had been strongly against the invasion before it happened. But then it all seemed to go so well. Iraqi armies melted away in front of our brave troops. Our technology seemed invincible, and before long we were helping the liberated Baghdad residents pull down Saddam’s statue. All those pessimists who had predicted a quagmire and thousands of dead American soldiers had been proved wrong.

On May 1, President Bush had heroically landed a plane on the USS Abraham Lincoln and announced victory under a “Mission Accomplished” banner. “In the battle of Iraq,” he proclaimed, “the United States and our allies have prevailed.” There was still some minor mopping up to do — we still hadn’t captured Saddam or found his WMDs — but our forces had the run of the country, so that was bound to happen any day now.

A few people knew better. In early July I talked to my best friend from high school, a career Marine who was home already from participating in the invasion. “The real war is just starting now,” he told me. But that was a lonely point of view. Bush’s supporters were already styling him as one of the great presidents — maybe not quite in the Washington/Lincoln neighborhood, but certainly in the next tier. It was a shame there was no more space on Mount Rushmore.

Sometime around then — I can’t tell you when because I hadn’t started blogging yet and haven’t been able to google up a newspaper account of it — Michael Moore gave a talk in Manchester. At the time I knew Moore only by reputation, so I was expecting to hear some angry rabble-rousing. Instead, he spoke in a compassionate tone that has stuck with me ever since.

The country had made a huge mistake, he told us. (I’m paraphrasing because I took no notes.) And sooner or later events would make that obvious. The way forward was for large numbers of Americans to recognize that mistake and change their minds about the war. How would that happen? Changing your mind about something you felt strongly about was a gut-wrenching process, and we needed to make it as easy as possible for them, so that it could happen sooner rather than later.

More or less, things played out the way he envisioned: By April, 2004, the First Battle of Fallujah made it undeniable that the war was not over, and the Abu Ghraib revelations removed the invasion’s aura of moral crusade. From then on, support for the war waned. Dick Cheney’s claims that the insurgency was in its last throes, or Thomas Friedman’s repeated predictions that everything would be fine in another six months (which became known as a “Friedman unit“), became increasingly unbelievable. The Democrats retook Congress in 2006, and a Democrat who had opposed the invasion got the nomination in 2008 and beat a more hawkish Republican in a landslide. Some public figures who supported the war early on (Hillary Clinton and John Kerry come to mind) admitted they were wrong, but lots more people (Donald Trump, for example) just rewrote history so that they had always been against the war.

At no point in that national mind-changing process was there some stunning new argument that turned everybody around. Anti-war Democrats didn’t come up with great new slogans or ads in 2006 or 2008. Demonstrations didn’t change minds in the numbers needed. Books and movies didn’t do it. Events had to do it.

I think we’re in a similar situation now: Electing Donald Trump was a huge mistake. It’s not just a mistake for the country as a whole, it’s a mistake for most of the people who did it: Working class whites are going to see their safety net shredded and power further consolidate among the wealthy, with no turnaround in the collapse of the kind of good-paying manufacturing and mining jobs people could count on a generation ago. They will lose health insurance, their public schools will decline, their children will have a harder time paying for college, and many will be victims of preventable environmental or public-health disasters.

The limits of propaganda. Many of them have, up until now, been entirely taken in by Trump’s bluster and a regular diet of propaganda from Fox News, Breitbart, Alex Jones, and right-wing talk radio. They believe a lot of things that aren’t true, and are ignorant of many facts they ought to know. But propaganda can only go so far. You can’t, for example, convince a minimum-wage worker that he has a good job, or that we have the greatest healthcare system in the world when he faces a choice between bankruptcy and watching his wife die.

Reality is persistent, and propaganda that explains it away has to keep changing. Eventually people catch on, even if they don’t begin each day with The New York Times and end it with PBS Newshour. You don’t have to believe the “liberal media” when the news is happening to you and the people you love.

Moore’s speech impressed me for a couple of reasons. First, he really believed in his view of reality, so he didn’t have to be shrill about it. He didn’t need to wish misfortune on the people who disagreed with him, because misfortune was coming whether anybody wished for it or not. He was so certain that he could already feel compassion for misfortune’s victims. And second, in spite of recent events to the contrary, he retained his faith in the basic sense of the American people. They/we could be fooled for a while, but not forever.

That’s the point of view we need now. If President Trump really does “make America great again” — bring good jobs back to the middle class, fix our education system, produce opportunities for poor people in the inner cities, fix our healthcare system, avoid any further damage from the “hoax” of climate change, win the war against “radical Islam” — then liberalism is done for a generation. And it should be, because he would have proved us totally wrong.

But how likely is that?

And if he makes all those situations worse, as I think he will, how likely is it that the American people won’t notice? Or that they will support him anyway, just because?

Trumpism will fail as a political movement because the people who voted for Trump will look at their own undeniable experiences and change their minds. It’s something they will do for themselves, not something we can do to them or for them. The best we can do is to help that process along. So how?

We won’t overpower them with vehemence. Trump supporters already know that we don’t like him, that we think he’s a horrible person, and that we think everything he says is a lie. They knew that when they voted for him. Repeating all that in a louder voice is not going to turn them around.

Does that mean we should just shut up? Not at all, but it should influence the way we express ourselves. We need to think of ourselves as Avatars of Reality: persistent, implacable, but not boiling over. In terms of protests, for example, large groups of people holding a vigil are better than small groups having a riot. Publicly supporting somebody — American Muslims, the undocumented, black neighborhoods that feel terrorized by police, the working poor who depend on Medicaid or ObamaCare or Planned Parenthood, communities damaged by de-regulated pollution — is better than just being anti-Trump.

On social media, just trading insults plays into Trump’s hands, because his insults are as good as ours. His model of political discourse is two tribes of people yelling at each other; it doesn’t matter who’s right, just who is on your side. Our model is that reality exists and presents problems the public needs to deal with.

To remain true to our model, we need to keep drawing the discussion back to facts and plans and personal experiences. That doesn’t have to be complicated. (This week I saw somebody on Facebook claim that Trump had more integrity than Clinton, and I responded with a fact: Clinton has never had to pay $25 million to settle a fraud lawsuit.)

Trump, of course, will continue to assert his own facts. But fantasy lacks the stability of reality, so he will have to keep changing his story as events unfold. One by one, here and there, people will catch on.

The low-information voter. Trump himself almost never loses sight of the fact that he is speaking to the low-information voter. It’s rare for an interviewer to draw him deeper into an issue, and it never goes well for him. (Chris Matthews got him talking specifics about abortion, and his staff was walking that back for the next week.) That’s why Twitter is his primary form of public communication: It’s all about reaction, not explanation.

Feeling superior about that is too easy. I believe Trump won by beating Clinton decisively among low-information voters. (That’s hard to prove, because low-info voters aren’t as easily identifiable as racial or economic subgroups. You can use education as a proxy, but that involves some biased assumptions.) So people who only pay attention now and then are precisely the ones we need to turn around.

That was also true about Iraq. If your whole experience of the Iraq War was watching on TV as smart bombs went down smokestacks and joyful Iraqis pulled down Saddam’s statue, then nobody could convince you the invasion had been a bad idea. Eventually, though, even the most poorly informed voter started to wonder: “Why are we still losing soldiers if the war was over months ago?” and “If we’re winning, why do we have to take Fallujah again?” Thoughts like that didn’t have to be deep or complicated.

Two things to remember about low-info voters:

  • They respond to stories and experiences more than statistics. It’s important to keep bringing policy questions back to the people who are getting helped or hurt. It’s best if you can lay out a scenario where a policy will hurt the listener himself. Next best is to explain how you’re being affected. Next best is to relate things you’ve seen yourself rather than learned through the media. (So don’t just read about stuff, go places where you will see things, and then testify to what you’ve seen.)
  • They care about results more than processes. This is particularly maddening right now, when all the effects of Trump’s policies are still theoretical, but the process violations are everywhere. But while the high-info voter looks at a hole in the fence and immediately imagines the wolves getting in or the sheep getting out, the low-info voter doesn’t.

Amplifying that second point a little: People who watch politics closely are horrified that Trump hasn’t released his tax returns or put his assets into a blind trust. All other recent presidents have done that, so the sense of violation is immediate. But to a low-info voter, those sound like technicalities. So you always need to make the connection to results: His businesses are wide-open doors for pay-offs, and we know so little about his finances at the beginning of his term that at the end we won’t even know whether he has robbed us blind. Reagan said, “Trust, but verify.” We aren’t in a position to verify anything about Trump.

The importance of popularity. The darkest imagining of liberals right now is that Trump’s election heralds a descent towards fascism or some related form of non-democratic government. Trump has roused such nativist/racist passions and shows so little respect for the norms of democracy that the question “What wouldn’t he do if he could get away with it?” seems to have no answer.

Other Republican behavior — the unprecedented obstruction of President Obama, up to the point of ignoring his Supreme Court nominee; the moves to suppress minority voting in states where Republicans have power; and most recently the post-election rule-changing in North Carolina — point to a party that has lost all principles and stands only for its own power.

All that raises the questions: What if there are no more meaningful elections? Why would changing people’s minds even matter?

That fascist scenario requires President Trump to take audacious extra-constitutional action which Republicans in Congress, in the military, in the courts, and elsewhere in government either actively support or passively go along with. But Republicans at the moment are not unified behind Trump. They could become unified, if he becomes the kind of overwhelmingly popular president that it would be political suicide to oppose. But that’s not where they are now.

Trump begins his term having received only 46% of the vote, and with an unprecedented unfavorability rating, even after a post-election bump. This is before the fog around his policies resolves, as it must, into a budget proposal and a plan for healthcare.

In the next year or two, his popularity is key to avoiding the most negative scenarios. If he remains as unpopular as he is today, or gets more unpopular, then the darkest scenarios will never manifest.

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Comments

  • Michael Wells  On December 19, 2016 at 10:30 am

    When optimism or hope is in short supply, it is a help to read thoughtful commentary such as this. Unfortunately, I am not convinced. Your basic assumption is that reality will intrude on Trump voters. This ignores the power of self-delusion and anger. Except for those who had a reasonable belief that they individually, would profit from a Trump presidency (selfish, but rational), the rest of the Trump voters were ignorant and angry. However one characterizes the expression of that anger towards “the other,” it is not rational and it will be immune to “reality.” The man who is faced with bankruptcy or watching his wife die will not blame Trump. He will blame the “illegitimate black president” who started this health care mess or the medical care provider from India who is greedy or the failure to properly diagnose his wife’s condition. Bankruptcy will have no stigma to him because, after all, Trump did it many times.
    This is the season of sending and receiving holiday greetings. I received one from one of my high school classmates, a nice man who spent a career in the Cost Guard. My wife read it first and mentioned that he was “very pleased with the outcome of the election.” How anyone who served in the military can support Trump who is a threat to our national security beggars belief. I took his note unread, and immediately put it into my wood stove for burning.

  • gordonc  On December 19, 2016 at 10:35 am

    I believe it was John Kenneth Galbreath who said “Ideas are not defeated by other ideas, but by a mass of circumstance with which they cannot contend.”

    Cynicism about politics was one reason people voted for Trump. I hope the coming Trump fiasco doesn’t lead them to become even more cynical. We have many problems with our government; cynicism is the cure for none of them.

    Also, “I told you so” is probably not a good approach either.

  • Jeff Rosenberg  On December 19, 2016 at 10:36 am

    Another approach to changing people’s mind is to ask them to make predictions. Be it about healthcare, good-paying jobs, deficit reduction, etc., the key is that it commits the person to an outcome and hopefully brings their attention to see how it works out. I wonder if yet another approach is to highlight contrasts which show inconsistent behavior. How is it that the Flint water investigations have slipped into oblivion in contrast to, say, Benghazi? I must say, though, that I marvel how such inconsistencies don’t seem to register. Fair play has apparently taken a back seat to feeling self-righteous or even smug.

  • Paul  On December 19, 2016 at 10:45 am

    This is great. I ask Trump supporters about their vision for his term (things will be great)and ask them if they think he will get Medicare and social security (no they say).

    While that’s great I don’t know how (or I’m unwilling to do the work) to help them thier deep anxiety and fears about the Other. I was once a rush Limbaugh listener and I did enough touchy feel emotional stuff that I worked through a lot of those fears but it’s hard and involves “hand to hand combat” that I just don’t want to do. Listening to people be scared of this or that in the hoped that you can eventually listen to them connect it to their own rough childhoods is not on my to do list. But, at this point, I don’t see a lot of alternatives.

  • Andi Liebenbaum  On December 19, 2016 at 3:16 pm

    My primary take-away from your piece today is patience – just wait it out and eventually the basket of deplorables will realize they’ve been had, and will turn on their maker. Maybe. Perhaps. Possibly.

    I’m in California, and the day after the election, I was firmly against secession, CalExit, abandoning the fact-folks among the fact-free. I advocated for moving, but TO a red state, not to a blue horizon. I cried for the women, and children, the people of color, the people of different faiths, the vulnerable, the sick, the elderly, the needy in the rest of the so-called union. Big, deep sobs.

    And today I am firmly in favor of abandoning ship. Why? Because Trump is actually the best defense we currently have against the muck he is appointing to run the country. It’s my firm conviction that the basket that elected him doesn’t actually care about their self-interest because, in fact, they are selfish, nasty bigots no matter how hard they rail against such a label or call me names in return. As I’ve been saying a lot recently, there is a key difference between fact and opinion. My opinion of Trump voters is that they are awful people. The fact is, they are not capable of making valued decisions. Case in point – the election of Donald Trump as president.

    Back to the issue of Trump being the “best.” As Van Jones, Shaun King, and MANY others have pointed out repeatedly, Trump has no moral center, no true policy perspective. He is a media personality who responds shallowly and impulsively to whatever wind blows through his golden hair. He is pro-choice in one instant, and pro punishing women who have abortions the next. He is for the Iraq invasion until he is against it. You have written on this very topic several times, either in passing or in depth.

    His appointees, including his vice presidential choice, however, are true believers. These are the people who will attempt to make things bad, who will serve the dollar – their dollar – to the absolute peril of the rest of us. That said, having appointed a rabid-dog gang of very selfish, hateful humans to posts of undeniable authority, he will never allow any of them to shine more brightly than he. He will claim victory and salvation when he yanks the chains and keeps the pack from the ends of the destruction they attempt. Yes, he appointed them, but that will be forgotten when he appeals to the deplorables as their savior when he prevents the pack from carrying out its greatest desires. “Look,” he will say, “I stopped them! I saved (a sliver of) your health care, your environment, your benefits. I’m the one to thank – those guys are crazy.” And the basket will be thrilled and pleased that the show had such a fantastic and thrilling climax with a head rush of an ending, that they will chant for a new season. But even we who did not support him will be grateful that he (sort of) stopped them. He will never allow them more credit, more air time, more visibility, more power than he has, because, if nothing else, Donald Trump is an unapologetic egomaniac.

    Perhaps the demos, we, are too stupid for democracy after all. I am not hopeful. In fact, I’m afraid the really cool experiment with democracy failed (again), as it has periodically over the course of recorded human history. While it might not have been the candidate’s most politically appropriate statement to make out loud, I agree with Clinton 100% – these fact-free people are not thoughtful enough to realize that it’s THEIR health, THEIR communities, THEIR children and parents, THEIR doctors, neighbors, emergency rooms, nurses, caregivers, and teachers – who are at risk.

    California is NOT perfect. We have our own struggles with racial and income inequality, a homeless crisis, environmental threats, social pushes and pulls, financial illiteracy, under employment, and fiscal (in)solvency. Right now we’re facing the interesting conundrum of a near one-party political system with super majorities of democrats elected to both chambers of our state legislature. But we are a fact-based state, even the conservatives among us. We have a strong and improving economy. We have quality protections for workers and a robust small business climate. We have smart people who do smart things like run businesses, work for the state, care for their children, and net GIVE more to the deplorables than we take in. It’s a wondrous thing to live in a place where there is respectable dissent and legitimate debate. I would love to be persuaded otherwise, but the best I can come up with today is good luck to the rest of the nation. Let’s hope that’s the just Monday morning blues talking.

  • ADeweyan  On December 19, 2016 at 6:07 pm

    I hope you’re right. I really, really do.

    But my fear (along with others who have commented) is that since the right side of things has become so good at controlling “the message,” and republican politicians have begun feeling comfortable with subverting actual democracy and the attempt to determine the legitimate will of the people, that we may not have time for these things to work themselves out.

    Or alternatively, it gives me pause to imagine how bad things would have to become to break through and reach these voters. I’m not sure the country could survive what would have to happen to get the mass of Trump voters to change their minds — it would almost certainly be dramatically changed.

  • coastcontact  On December 19, 2016 at 10:01 pm

    I am another Californian. However I am a registered Independent. I voted for Clinton because Trump brought out the alt-right/neo Nazis.

    1. Trump won because Clinton had no ideas on how to re-employ the thousands who have lost their jobs thanks to outsourcing. All the other reasons for Clinton’s loss given by the Democrats tells us they are deaf to the voting in the rust belt and other areas where manufacturing has seen a major decline.

    2. Trump denies ever supporting the invasion of Iraq. He has criticized the invasion of Libya. There can be no denying that America’s involvement in the Middle East has been a disaster.

    If Trump had run as a Democrat, members of that party would be enthusiastic supporters.

    Isn’t it the actions that count? It is not clear that he will do all the horrible things he threatened (deport illegal aliens, create a data base of Muslims, end support of NATO, etc.). Those horrible things he promised were just words. Let’s see what he actually does.

    After all, what choice do we have?

    • 1mime  On December 19, 2016 at 10:40 pm

      Now, nothing. Then, do one’s due dilligence and study the candidate – his rhetoric – his actions – his reputation – his immoral behavior – his arrogance….If you skipped all “that”, you are correct, now there’s nothing to do but watch the house of cards fall down. Because it is gonna be a major, major disaster for women, equality, the working class, health care, foreign affairs, our environment, you name it. The biggest problem is not Trump, it’s that all branches of government are in one party’s control. THAT is a big frickin’ deal.

    • Camilla Cracchiolo  On December 25, 2016 at 1:17 am

      No, a lot of us Democrats would not have been as enthusiatic as his current supporters if Trump ran as a Democrat. There were a lot of us who were for Bernie and worked our hearts out for him. 40% of the Party. That’s where our hearts would have gone. We were *not* at all thrilled about Hillary but we held our noses and voted for her.

      We would never give our love and support to a billionaire with the history of erratic behavior and outrageous statements. that Trump has.

  • Dangerous Meredith  On December 19, 2016 at 10:57 pm

    For what it’s worth, Tony Abbott lied his way to an election win here in Australia in 2013 and from then on proceeded to horrify everyone by being mean, dishonest and downright silly.

    • Alex  On December 25, 2016 at 5:12 pm

      And then what happened to him?

  • bcdeb1  On December 20, 2016 at 1:34 am

    One would think they would change their minds when the see what a disaster the Trump Administration (ugh) is. One would think so. But cast your eyes over to Turkey where Ergodan has kicked the can of civil liberties to the curb, and look how much support he has in Turkey. So maybe nothing will change the minds of Trump supporters.

  • Kim Cooper  On December 20, 2016 at 4:27 am

    I think Doug is right — reality can change their minds — but only if we, calmly and compassionately, point out to them that it’s not working. They will see it if we help them.

  • Sal Perillo  On December 20, 2016 at 12:46 pm

    Let me argue here in Doug’s favor.

    I don’t know if everyone saw this:

    http://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2016/12/7/13854512/who-are-trump-supporters

    But I think it nicely frames the challenge. Dems need to reach a few percentage points of people who voted for Trump (and/or third party candidates), and motivate some of the Ds that stayed home. This can be done without having to break through to the Trumpers.

    For those who say: “well, the Trump supporters are unreasonable, racist, etc.” how many of them voted for McCain in 2008? I bet almost all of them. We’re not going to reach them. But late deciders broke for Trump by double digits. I’m pretty sure they aren’t dedicated to him. And Clinton hatred was a uniquely strong, and non-repeatable, phenomenon.

    Also: I think we should all spend some time and money figuring out how to make it easier for people to vote. Support Vote by Mail initiatives wherever possible. Fund organizations that pay for IDs in states with Voter ID laws. Fund and support legal advocacy groups to do things like find birth certificates and help folks prove residency in their states. The more people vote, the better it is for progressive politics.

  • Don Taylor  On December 20, 2016 at 1:39 pm

    It doesn’t always work that way. Millions voted for Reagan’s re-election even as the systematic radical redistribution of wealth was already underway, and 30 years later they still proclaim him a great man even as they watch their children’s and grandchildren’s economic security and future slide downhill. And if events convince Trump supporters they voted against themselves, they’re going to do it again when another con artist comes along. They always do.

    • 1mime  On December 20, 2016 at 1:50 pm

      There is convenient memory loss where deficits and Reagan are concerned. It seems that the only time deficits matter to Republicans is when Democrats are in power.

      As for assigning credit for fiscal brilliance in this political environment, I am struck by the focus on the DOW approaching 20K with plaudits being accorded to Trump’s win and Republicans sweeping all divisions of government. Let there be no doubt, there will be profits for those who always profit – those in the upper income levels who repeatedly gain even more favorable tax treatment upon GOP wins. Profits which will not be put into circulation, will not be shared via increased wages and benefits, but simply re-invested. There is no obstacle to GOP implementation of Paul Ryan’s “A Better Way” plan short of the very vulnerable filibuster in the Senate, and many of their proposals have more to do with cuts to the safety net….A better way for Republicans but not for millions of Americans.

      The election is over. Elections have consequences. The next 4 years are going to be a nightmare for working people, the elderly, disabled and poor. Watch and weep or get involved in bringing change. Almost 42% of eligible American voters stayed home. HRC lost by less than a total of 80K votes. Do the math. Get mad. Then get even by getting involved.

  • Tom Stites  On December 20, 2016 at 4:59 pm

    At first I loved the term low-information voters, but lately I’ve come to think that it would be more accurate to call them high-disinformation voters.

  • William Drapou  On December 21, 2016 at 12:47 am

    I believe that still leaves an elephant in the room.
    When you state that even Trump supporters will eventually catch on, given time, you are ignoring the scapegoat effect.

    So long as there is a target he can point to as “The reason we couldn’t save” healthcare, or Medicare, or, freedom, his supporters won’t care, as long as the spin is good enough. Red meat to the lions.

    He can purge the “undesirables” a group at a time, or in wholesale lots.

    It’s been done before.

    And don’t you DARE say it can’t happen here!

    Everyone told me he couldn’t win, for 18 months that’s all anyone said.

    Anything can happen here.

    In fact, I think it already has.

  • Ilona Elliott  On December 21, 2016 at 1:09 pm

    I’m not big on the whole “Give Trump a Chance” movement, but I’m willing to give this a chance. I have resisted shaaring the same old anti-Trump posts on social media. I think your suggestions for what to say and how are valid and worth a shot.

  • Gary Monti  On December 21, 2016 at 5:13 pm

    Insightful. Well-written.

  • Anonymous  On December 22, 2016 at 12:23 am

    He never flew the plane

  • Barbara Molloy  On December 22, 2016 at 1:38 am

    Love this. I have a difference however with the notion of low information voters finally settling like cement inside a reality so obviously unlike what they thought they would get by voting for Trump..that they finally “get it.” This many years after the crash of 2008, President George W. Bush is revered like Reagan— most especially by those who lost everything..their homes, credit, retirement, future (s), pensions…. Blind love, ignorance, inability to believe you voted for someone under whose administration there were so many disasters…? Obama is still seen by the demographic who chose Trump as having caused the crash which happened under Bush’s watch! Bailouts “caused the recession” loved ones of mine who voted for Bush and now Trump will have you believe.

  • Hotshot3000  On December 22, 2016 at 11:22 am

    The problem is that low information voters have such short memories. We keep hearing that the Republican Party is dead, but it keeps rising from the ashes. Even though it burns down the house that is our safety net with its policies, the electorate keeps re-electing the same scoundrels that lit the match.

  • M.H. (@sfpoetess)  On December 23, 2016 at 10:55 pm

    First let me say that I love your well thought out and well reasoned posts. This particular one is clearly written from the privileged position of someone who doesn’t look “other” enough to have to cope with racists and sexist bullying that the president-elect models repeatedly and with gusto. Not a judgement, just an observation.

  • Dave  On December 27, 2016 at 11:32 am

    You say … “Working class whites are going to see their safety net shredded and power further consolidate among the wealthy, with no turnaround in the collapse of the kind of good-paying manufacturing and mining jobs people could count on a generation ago. They will lose health insurance, their public schools will decline, their children will have a harder time paying for college, and many will be victims of preventable environmental or public-health disasters.”

    This has already happened under the democratic president, Barack Obama.

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