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Editor’s Note: This essay was written by Lipton Matthews, a black libertarian who writes for mainstream publications, such as The Federalist and Intellectual Takeout.
Liberal commentators are still shocked that Trump increased his share of non-white voters. Many are confused as to why the presumed “racism” of Donald Trump failed to repulse blacks and Hispanics. Mainstream pundits were so distracted by their hatred for the President, they didn’t notice that he pandered incessantly. Early in the administration, Steve Bannon tried to create a palatable image for President Trump in the black community. It was not unusual for him to argue that the administration intended to restrict illegal immigration in order to protect jobs for black workers. The Trump administration portrayed economic nationalism as an ally of minorities.
In a 2017 piece for Black Enterprise Magazine, Selena Hill reports that Mr. Bannon leveraged the fear of globalization to obtain the support of black Americans: “Economic nationalism does not care about your color, your race, your ethnicity . . . It doesn’t care about your religion, it doesn’t care about your gender, it doesn’t care about your sexual preference,” he said. He went on to lament the “destruction of the black and Hispanic working class,” at the hands of “globalists.” Miss Hill observed that this message resonated with some black leaders: “According to GOP strategist Raynard Jackson, Bannon connected with the attendees and received a positive response.”
This anti-globalist agenda was warmly received by other non-whites as well. In November, the BBC profiled one:
Mateo Mokarzel, 40, is a graduate student from Houston, Texas and is of mixed heritage, Mexican and Lebanese. He didn’t vote in 2016, and he isn’t loyal to either major party – but this time around he decided to cast his vote for the Republicans . . . . “He really delivered on his anti-globalisation policy,” he says. “Neoliberal expansion has really hurt both Mexico and the US, and when you have family that live there, and you can see how it’s hurt people living, their jobs, their wages, it really has increased the narco-war, and this is one of the things Trump came in saying – ‘hey, we’re going to tear apart these trade deals’ – and then he actually did it. That was for me the first sign that he actually meant some of the things he was saying.”
The article also cites polls showing that, counter to popular belief, President Trump’s stance on immigration isn’t at odds with what most non-whites think:
Even on issues such as immigration, on which President Trump has been notoriously hardline, the Latino community is less monolithic than some assume. A 2017 Gallup poll, for example, found that 67% of Hispanic people said they worried a great deal or a fair amount about illegal immigration – higher than the proportion of non-Hispanic whites (59%) who answered the same way . . . . A 2018 Harvard-Harris poll also found that 85% of black Americans favour reducing legal immigration, more than any other demographic – 54% chose the strictest options available, allowing fewer than 250,000 immigrants per year, or even say they want little to no new immigrants at all.
But despite his increased non-white support, President lost in 2020. His failure to retain his fragile 2016 coalition, including support from dissident conservatives, doomed him.
White nationalist Hunter Wallace summarizes:
In the 2020 election, Trump did better with every demographic with one notable exception. He turned out more Conservatives than he did in the 2016 election. He did better with Jews, Muslims, Mormons, Hispanics, Asians, LGBTs, blacks, women and the upper middle class. He should have won then, right? White men are why Trump won the 2016 election and lost the 2020 election.
Mr. Wallace explains that the President ignored the “White voters who are moderates, populists and Independents” who elected him in 2016 and “governed as a conservative Republican and pandered to everyone else in society but them,” so in 2020, “He paid the price with White male Independents. He wasn’t racist enough or populist enough to be reelected president in the 2020 election. He stood by and did nothing while Black Lives Matter and Antifa ran wild and burned down the country.”
Meanwhile, most non-whites cared more about the effect of President Trump’s policies than his so-called “incendiary rhetoric.” Meaning he could have won the election by expressing hardline stances that appealed to white populists without losing non-whites. By tempering his convictions in order to appease polite society, the President lost the election.