Even Republicans and the Laid-Off Think We Need to Go Slow on Opening the Economy

Whenever I suggest that liberals should be less snarky toward conservative-leaning voters—as I did yesterday—I always get at least a few responses along these lines: Are you kidding? Have you seen these lunatics? They aren’t going to change their minds because we ask them nicely.

Sure. But the mistake here is watching TV and assuming that the tiny, lunatic crowds represent ordinary conservative voters. They don’t. They represent some of them, but probably not even a majority. The rest are up for grabs if we don’t lose them out of the gate by endlessly mocking them. Here’s a recent poll that backs this up:

This is solely a survey of people who have been laid off from their jobs, so it includes those who are suffering the most from lockdowns. This is as much Trump’s base as the Democratic base, but even so only about 40 percent approve of Trump’s performance. What’s more, only 13 percent think we should lift lockdown restrictions faster, and only 19 percent say we should open up the economy even if it means more people would get the coronavirus. The lunatics, it turns out, speak for only a very small portion of the country.

As you’d expect, the crosstabs show higher support for Trump among Republicans than Democrats. But even among Republicans, only 31 percent think lockdown restrictions should be lifted more quickly, and only half think we should open up the economy even if it means more people would get the coronavirus. Regardless of their support for Trump, it’s obvious that there’s a big chunk of Republicans who don’t agree with his lackadaisical attitude. And you know what? There are going to be even fewer by the end of the month when the infection numbers start to go up again.

At that point, of course, I imagine that Trump will try to blame it all on state governors. What else does he have left in his bag of tricks? But eventually even his fans are going to stop buying it.

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate