“Poorly Educated” Bite Back

As he ticked through a list of the groups that helped him win the Nevada primary, Donald Trump drew attention to one group in particular: “We won with the poorly educated. I love the poorly educated,” he underlined with his characteristic smirk. To quote Sarah Palin, “you betcha.”

While at first I thought this was just a “Freud tells” moment, it reveals a strategy. Nate Cohn’s Upshot column in today’s New York Times today predicted that one of the big challenges Trump will have in securing a victory in the Wisconsin primary is that the state has a well-educated population. “The lack of a high school education is the biggest correlation” for places that are likely to produce Trump victories. And Wisconsin is a well-educated state.

As everyone is tired of hearing, the Republican old guard is freaking out over a possible Trump nomination. How ironic that decades of education budget cutting by Republican tax hawks at every level has produced a voting mass of uneducated and uninformed voters that think Trump would actually make a good president. Ignorance about history, civics, science and just plain “how the world really works” that produces constituency that lacks the skepticism necessary to see this candidate for who he is.

What goes around comes around in politics and in life. And like so much of what has happened in 2016 race we are seeing the just deserts of over-heated rhetoric and lousy policy-making come back to haunt the G.O.P. candidates and, sadly, the rest of us, too.