How Views of Trump Change on the Right

I drew a little schematic of an idea to try and show how some on the right have reacted to Trump.


I’ve naturally focused on my intentionally weird sample of Puppies/right-leaning SF writers. It is also not intended to be particularly accurate at this point – more of a rough sketch of how I see the views shifting. In particular, the starting point is arbitrary- I didn’t double check when the first comment made about Trump’s candidacy was.

The vertical scale runs from opposed to Trump to supportive of Trump through different degrees.

  • Opposed to Trump: the person is simply against Trump for multiple reasons.
  • Opponent is worse: the person is opposed to Trump but sees him as preferable to Hillary Clinton.
  • Anti-anti: The person avoids talking positively about Trump but talks negatively about those who are opposed to Trump.
  • Sceptical support: The person has doubts about Trump but is prepared to support them.
  • Supportive: The person overtly supports Trump

The people listed are based on how I see their publicly expressed views changing over time.

  • LC – Larry Correia. LC expressed strong dislike of Trump, particulalry at nomination time. I think my line is a bit off as he was still talking about both candidates as being equally bad even at the election. However, now when he talks about such issues his position is more anti-anti.
  • JCW-John C Wright. Wright had a more complex journey. I’m not sure how anti-Trump he was initially but Trump was not his favoured candidate. These days he actively promotes what he sees as Trump’s accomplishments.
  • SH – Sarah Hoyt. Initially opposed to Trump, her views became closer to sceptical support over time.
  • VD – Vox Day. Consistenlypro-Trump.

So has Trump won over the anti-Trumps and does that make his position more solid? I assume similar paths are followed by others at the further end of the political spectrum but it is important to consider why some of these people were anti-Trump.

A consistent theme among the early opposition to Trump, aside from his general obnoxiousness, were four important factors:

  • Concern that he was a stealth Democrat based on his past financial aid and general hobnobbing with East Coast Democrats.
  • Concern that he would follow ‘populist’ stimulus style policies – particulalry mass infrastructure spending.
  • Concern that he would mess up the nomination of a new Superme Court Justice.
  • Concern that he was the candidate Clinton could most easily beat (I actually think Ted Cruz was more easily beatable but that’s irrelevant here).

The last dot point was made moot by Trump actually winning. The nomination of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court mean that Trump achieved a core goal for the right of the GOP in general. Finally the first two points have been reduced as concerns by Trump largely following the more standard GOP-right policy agenda.

Over time, Trump has become a more conventional extreme-right GOP politician in terms of policy and hence opposition to Trump in that arena has reduced.

7 thoughts on “How Views of Trump Change on the Right

  1. I’m pretty sure Hoyt declared she’d hold her nose and vote Trump shortly before the election so that fits with your line. (That was a common conversion point for Republican voters, it seems)
    I seem to recall JCW declaring once Trump was the candidate that other Republican voters would have to put up with Trump, in the same way that he’d put up with excessively wishy-washy candidates in the past, so I think maybe he embraced Trump a bit faster than you have him? Or maybe he bounced around a bit? I really don’t pay much attention to JCW nowadays unless you quote him though, so I may be a bit off on that.
    Didn’t our phantom friend start out by calling him a Limousine Democrat or some phrase like that? I wonder what he thinks now.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. I suspect a lot of opposition to Trump on the right was based, first, on the idea he couldn’t win, and, second, on the idea he couldn’t govern. As it has become clear that the Republicans in Congress all march to his tune, those sorts of objections have disappeared.

    Trump has something else working in his favor: He actually has policies he’s for. As a general rule, the Republicans have not been “for” anything for decades; they’re only against things the Democrats want to do. Trump’s policies are extremely foolish (burn more coal, keep out non-white immigrants, start a trade war, etc.) but he gets support from millions of fools who’ve always been unhappy that Republican politicians gave them lip service but then ignored them once they were in office. I suspect everyone on your list is very happy with Trump’s policies. He’s got rough edges, but he’s the president they’ve long dreamed of.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I’m not sure this is an accurate assessment. The Republicans have been “for” a very clear basket of things for the past 30-40 years: opposition to abortion, pro-NRA and gun lobby, cutting taxes, rolling back civil rights (race, gender, same-sex, women), anti-union labour and against labour rights and workplace protections in general, reducing funding to public services (education especially), privatizing everything possible, diminution of humanities while favoring STEM, resistance to pro-environmental issues etc etc.

      Who really knows what Tromp is for, other than Tromp’s interests, but I would generally think that he is the GOP’s apotheosis, their receptacle, a vehicle, — I think it’s more likely that McConnell, Ryan, Kelly, Pruitt, DeVos and various industry people who are handing him their desired policies and papers. The journalists and writers who have spent time with Tromp say he tends to have the opinion of the last person he talks to. I’m not sure he is the policy driver, although i do think he largely subscribes to their vision and general basket of hatreds.

      Void crabs, all of them.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Its nice to see that the self-styled Constitutional expert doesn’t actually know much of anything about the U.S. Constitution. Not even Scalia agreed with VD’s interpretation of the Second Amendment.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Like many others of his ilk, Trump appeals to resentment voters, i.e. The sort of people who are always whining that their lives and their values aren’t being taken seriously (i.e. Not valued higher than those of others) and that someone somewhere might be getting something they are not.

    The puppies are pretty much brimming with resentment, so of course they will come around to Trump.


    1. Trump could declare war on Canada tomorrow, and the 30% that constitutes his base would still support him because “he makes the libs’ heads explode.” The more stupid and self-servingly venal he is, the less sane people like him, and the more his base base (not a typo) cheers for the oceans of presumed liberal tears. It seems to be all they live for.

      Liked by 2 people

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