Vail Daily column: The survey results revealed!
July 5, 2016
A few weeks ago I asked readers to help with a purely unscientific survey to answer one simple little question: "Why do you support Donald Trump?" or "Why do you support Hillary Clinton?"
There was only one rule: Mentioning the opponent as a reason for supporting your candidate would not be a valid answer, and thus not count in the survey.
There were two ways to respond: Post online using the Vail Daily website via a Facebook account or sending me a direct email. While I received emails for two full weeks, not a single person posted directly online.
I can only assume what appeared obvious to me: Folks were afraid of letting others know what they really think in a public forum (go figure), yet felt comfortable replying to me directly, knowing, or at least hoping, I would keep their names anonymous.
Sleep well my friends, as I would never betray trust so blatantly (subtly perhaps, but only if deserved).
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While a few couldn't help themselves (you know who you are), launching into great conspiratorial detail about why they angrily hated the opponent and "never, ever, in a million trillion years would vote for (insert evil opponent's name)," over two dozen provided short, but seemingly honest, reasons for supporting one or the other.
The totals were somewhat telling all by themselves: two were pro-Donald Trump while all others were pro-Hillary Clinton.
I'll leave what that little tidbit reveals up to personal interpretation for now.
But either way, here are the most repeated, unbiased and unedited reasons a segment of Happy Valleyites are supporting Clinton:
She has experience with many players on the world stage, from her days at Yale, as first lady in Arkansas and D.C., senator for New York and secretary of state.
She has well-defined policies for national security, climate change, energy, healthcare, prevention of gun violence and campaign finance reform.
She has learned from her mistakes, is pro-choice and pro-Planned Parenthood.
She has been fighting for health care, women, families, and kids since the '70s and will continue to do so as president.
A grandmother says the country "needs the heart of a woman as its leader right now."
A 9-year-old young lady said she would vote for Clinton (if she could) for three reasons: She is a woman, has the most experience of any candidate and is a nice person.
For Trump: He is a businessperson, not an attorney, and will "create jobs" while stopping the influx of "Muslim and other illegal immigrants."
I'd like to list more, but as I said, there were only two.
So there you have it.
Scream, shout, yell, kick your dog, throw your coffee cup into the sink with real authority, write a letter to the editor or find an agreeable website to vent your opinions — whatever floats your boat.
What this tells me is Clinton supporters have their minds made up without hesitation, while Trump supporters are quietly waiting in the wings, patiently hoping their presumptive nominee will eventually provide them with substantive reasons to pledge their support publicly.
Thanks for playing, and like most of you, I can't wait for the upcoming conventions.
Richard Carnes, of Edwards, writes weekly. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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