Why talk with Trump voters?

Fifty-two Conversations With Iowa Trump Voters is a collaboration between the Fallon Forum and Bold Iowa. Each week from January 1 through December 31, 2021, I’ll have an hour-long conversation with a fellow Iowan who voted for Donald Trump. I’ll publish a summary of that conversation in my weekly blog and interview that voter on my radio talk show.

I’ve got four goals with these conversations:

1. Dispel the myth that all Trump voters are bad people;
2. Identify our common ground;
3. Dialogue about solutions to the existential threat of climate change;
4. Understand why so few rural and blue-collar Iowans vote Democrat.

I reject the rhetoric that most Trump voters are racists, misogynists, and “deplorable” — as Hillary Clinton so memorably referred to half of Trump’s supporters in 2016. There are good people who, for various reasons, voted for Donald Trump. We need to understand why. We need to listen. We need to figure out our shared interests, especially regarding the climate emergency.

Relevant to the fourth goal listed above, I’ll wrap up by quoting Andrew Yang:

“When I was running for president, I spoke with many of the people who hold some of our most common jobs in America — truck drivers, retail clerks, waitresses and more.

“When I told them I was running as a Democrat, a lot of them tended to flinch.

“We have to acknowledge that there’s something wrong when working class Americans have that response to a major party that is supposed to be fighting for them.

“So, you have to ask yourself in that situation, what is the Democratic Party standing for in their minds?”

I hope you’ll sign up to receive my weekly blogs — CLICK HERE TO SUBSCRIBE.

I hope you’ll listen to this series of interviews, either on our podcast or one of the stations that rebroadcast the program. CLICK HERE TO LISTEN.

Most important, I hope you’ll make an effort to talk with Trump voters you know. It takes effort, patience, an open mind, and a loving heart to build bridges, to identify common ground with people often demonized by politicians and the media. When the powers-that-be divide us, we all lose. Let’s change that. — Ed Fallon