June 13, 2017

Turning their blue county red: Republican leaders in Robeson County on Trump

The conventional wisdom during the presidential campaign held that Donald Trump’s politically incorrect rhetoric would alienate millions of minority voters, who’d turn out on Election Day to deliver the presidency to Hillary Clinton. The thing about the conventional wisdom is how unwise it can be – especially when it comes to a candidate as unconventional as Trump.

Robeson County used to be an overwhelmingly Democratic county. But it suddenly turned red in 2016. On a recent visit, Daniel Allott sat down with six members of the Robeson County Republican Party to discuss how this happened. As they explain in this video, part of the transformation was the result of the local party’s more pragmatic electoral strategy, and part of it had to do with a general desire for change in the county.

Also, Donald Trump’s promise to tear up trade deals and bring back manufacturing jobs resonated in a county that’s seen thousands of such jobs lost to NAFTA and other free trade agreements. Trump’s vow to “Make America Great Again” seemed tailor-made for this beleaguered county.

This video was originally featured as a part of the Washington Examiner’s series The Race to 2020: The people and places that will define a presidency. You can read more about Robeson County, see more videos, or use the form below to get email updates about future updates.

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