Special to Chatham House
The presidential candidacy of Donald Trump catalysed long-simmering frustrations among large segments of the American public. This dissatisfaction contributed to his election as the next US chief executive. Better understanding this public discontent—where it corresponds with candidate Trump’s stated policy positions and where it contradicts them–provides insights into future popular support for potential Trump administration policies, especially those that relate to the rest of the world.
Trump’s campaign slogan ‘Make America Great Again’ touched a raw nerve for many Americans. Roughly eight-in-ten Trump supporters believe that life for people like them is worse today than it was 50 years ago, according to a Pew Research Center survey. And for those older, white males, the American demographic hurt most by the loss of manufacturing jobs and wage stagnation, many of whom apparently voted for Trump, their life may well be worse than it was in the past.
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