Conversation with a Trump Supporter Who Voted for Obama in 2008

A long-time friend, who voted for Obama in 2008, is considering voting for Donald Trump. While she doesn’t believe Obama is a Kenyan Muslim, and never bought into the birther hoax, she does believe Hillary started the birther movement. She thinks Trump will be a deal-maker who gets things done “like Lyndon Johnson.” She likes his position on immigration — he won’t increase the number of Syrian refugees by 500 percent, as Hillary Clinton has proposed. He doesn’t think every act of violence is the result of lack of gun control legislation, as Hillary seems to believe. And he’ll reduce corruption — “drive the money-lenders out of the temple,” while Hillary wants to keep them there.

My responses are below. I doubt her mind will be changed, but I gave it my best shot, at the risk of overwhelming her.

1. It is indisputable that Hillary Clinton had NOTHING to do with the “birther” charge and there is NO evidence that anyone connected with her campaign “brought up Obama’s birth as a possible campaign issue for her to exploit.” 

 
2. Newt Gingrich’s claim that Hillary wants to increase the number of Syrian refugees in this country by 500 percent is a gross distortion of the issue, and Republican claims that Syrian refugees are “unvetted” is absolutely false and fear-mongering. The US currently admits only 10,000 Syrian refugees during the greatest refugee crisis since World War II. He failed to mention that refugees to the US go through YEARS of vetting by the State Department and FBI. Hillary says the US could take in about 65,000 refugees. That is still a drop in bucket considering the 65 million refugees in 2015,  or one out of every 113 people on Earth, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). The number represents a 5.8 million increase on the year before.
 
If the US does nothing, it really loses its international reputation for being a generous country. 
 
During and after the Holocaust, 70 percent of Americans polled didn’t want dirty Jews entering the US. Fortunately, Presidents Roosevelt and Truman defied public opinion and favored generous immigration of Jewish refugees. 
 
This is an area where Hillary Clinton shows moral courage while Donald Trump and his crowd are cowards who appeal to religious bigotry. 
 
 
3. “Every violent act in this country being blamed on lack of gun control.” Who says that?  At best, only the most modest gun legislation could pass Congress, and at best it might prevent some violent acts. Of course it’s hard to measure violence that didn’t occur as a result of new laws. No proponent asserts that gun control legislation will eliminate all gun-related violence. That’s silly.
 
FactCheck.org: Trump Distorts Clinton’s Gun Stance
 
Hillary has outlined a mental health policy, promoting early diagnosis and intervention, more training for law enforcement officers, etc.
 
Trump’s website lists no mental health policies other than bland generalities. 
 
How Donald Trump Gets It Wrong on Mental Illness Every Time: His rhetoric isn’t just stigmatizing, it’s factually incorrect
 
4. Trump the deal-maker? 
 
Hillary is a much better deal-maker than Trump, who tries to bully and humiliate rivals
 
5. Which candidate is most corrupt?
The case against Hillary Clinton is that her administration might be corrupted around the margins…The case against Trump is qualitatively different. Trump is flamboyantly corrupt in ways that run to the very core of his identity and prospective governing choices.”
Case in point: Hillary has released all of her tax returns since 2001, showing she paid a lot of taxes and gave a lot to charity. Trump has refused to release a single year of tax returns, breaking with a 40 year tradition of both nominees releasing their tax returns.
6. Which candidate’s statements are more likely to be truthful and which one routinely lies?
Hillary is far more truthful by a long shot
7. Trump is plain dangerous.

And all warned Donald Trump would be a dangerous commander in chief. The event …

The Danger of Trump and Putin’s Relationship

The Atlantic‎ – 2 days ago
Never thought an American presidential candidate would express admiration for vicious dictators like Putin, Mussolini, and Saddam Hussein
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