A recent LA Times article poked a hole in many of Conservative media’s biggest theories. That theory is that Trump’s base is leaving in droves over DACA.
DonaldÂ Trumpâ€™s tough talk on illegal immigration was a big part of the reason Dave Hagstrom and many others in this booming Phoenix suburb supported him for president. â€œWalls make good neighbors,â€ Hagstrom said.
So when the president moved this week to cut a deal â€” withÂ DemocratsÂ no less â€” to block the expulsion of 800,000 immigrants brought to the U.S. illegally as children, was Hagstrom disappointed?
Not at all.
â€œIf you were to deport them, where would they go?â€ Hagstrom, 60, a car-warranty manager, asked on his way to a Bible-study dinner at an upscale shopping mall. â€œTo send them across the border would be inhumane almost. Thereâ€™s no life for them there.â€
The LA Times found more:
In more than a dozen conversations with Trump voters in this sweltering Sonoran Desert oasis, not one found fault with Trumpâ€™s abandonment of his vow to deport the young immigrants, often referred to as Dreamers. In the bargain, he said, Democrats agreed to much tougher border enforcement, though not construction of a physical wall.
â€œIâ€™m a believer in America First,â€ Joe Dahlstrom, 45, a Mesa golf course owner, said as misters sprayed him and his 4-year-old daughter, Gracyn, outside the Panera Bread where they stopped Thursday night for a family dinner.
â€œBut I also think that at this point we just have to take a hard look at whoâ€™s here,â€ Dahlstrom said. â€œAnd if theyâ€™re good people who are doing the right things and have assimilated, I think a plan needs to happen.â€
Even Trumpâ€™s willingness to bypass Republicans in Congress and work with Democrats to strike an immigration bargain failed to faze supporters like Dave Buckett.
â€œHis party doesnâ€™t back him, so he might as well go to the competition,â€ said the 76-year-old retiree from nearby Gilbert. â€œThereâ€™s a lot of swamp on both sides of the fence. I think thereâ€™s more on the Republican side than people like to think. Sad to say.â€
That suits people like Joseph Wise just fine.
â€œI know a lot of these kids,â€ said Wise, 75, a retired electrical engineer from Gilbert, who paused to talk about Trump and immigration as he loaded groceries into the back of his sport utility vehicle. â€œTheyâ€™re good kids. Iâ€™ve talked to some of them about how they crossed the border and barely survived.â€
To Steve Feld, it makes no sense to deport young immigrants smuggled into the U.S. by their parents. â€You canâ€™t send them back if they grew up here,â€ the 60-year-old locksmith said on his way to buy a birthday gift for his grandson at a Target in Mesa. â€œThatâ€™s not fair.â€
Not that Trumpâ€™s supporters have given up on the border wall or tough security measures to stop illegal immigration.
Sheryl Dressel, 61, a retired vision therapist from Chandler, resents hearing â€œPress 2 for Spanishâ€ on automated phone greetings, and she opposes driverâ€™s licenses for immigrants in the U.S. illegally.
But she, too, has no problem with Trump agreeing to let the Dreamers stay in the United States, so long as they donâ€™t commit crimes.
â€œThey donâ€™t know Mexico,â€ she said as she headed into a Mesa grocery store. â€œTheyâ€™re Americans.â€
Even Sheriff Joe was onboard with whatever decisionÂ Trump comesÂ to
indeed, even Arpaio seemed willing to go along with the compromise reached this week, if Trump thinks it best.
â€œHeâ€™s trying to make deals and get stuff done,â€ said Arpaio, a staunch supporter of the president who faced a prison sentence for racial profiling before Trump pardoned him last month.
This should be a message to all in Conserative media who are causing panic over this Dreamer deal. Trump’s base trusts Trump it’s time for you to do the same.
One bipartisan survey, conducted in May, found that nearly eight in 10 Trump voters supported continuation of the program that protects Dreamers from deportation, if that was the presidentâ€™s choice. â€œIf Trump leads, his base will follow,â€ said Neil Newhouse, a Republican pollster, who helped conduct the research