Every time I went to a pro-Donald Trump rally, I tried to talk with as many people as possible. I wish I would’ve talked to more. Honestly, the idea that there will be no more Trump get-togethers with these folks — and others like them — is one of the most difficult things to consider when considering Joe Biden may be the next President.
But at every rally, there was a common theme among many of the supporters — they had never been involved in politics prior to Trump.
And when I asked, “so, what about in four years if he’s no longer on the ballot and you can’t vote for him? Will you stay active?”
Most of the time they seemed as though they hadn’t considered that possibility. I don’t blame them — 2020 has been difficult enough, thinking about 2024 seems like a futile exercise.
But it’s a question I’ve been thinking about for the last month or so. Donald Trump, for better or worse, lit a fire unlike any other in people who simply have never cared much for politics. He has also inspired young people like no Republican in my lifetime.
What will those people do after he serves his second term?
Well, knowing what we know now, he may not get that second term.
If President Trump runs in 2024, obviously those people stay engaged. But that doesn’t seem likely.
Now, considering how this election was decided — by mail-in ballots that were “counted” after election day — will this turn these average, everyday Americans off to politics forever? Or will it embolden them and motivate them for elections to come?
For these Trump supporters, these people who feel like they’ve never seen or heard them represented in a “politician,” this loss will hurt. It certainly stings for them right now. And while wounds heal over time, will the risk/reward seem worth it to engage in future political battles?
We don’t know.
We posed the question on Facebook yesterday, asking if this election makes followers more determined to participate in future elections or feel their vote doesn’t matter.
Now, right now it’s obviously easier to feel the vote doesn’t matter and the pain isn’t worth the investment.
Here are some of the responses:
“No point in voting in 2022 or 2024,” Daniel said. “Apparently voting just doesn’t matter anymore. No point in even having an election. The ruling class can just inform us who our next leader is. Welcome to the Soviet States of America. Hello, comrades.”
Pat agreed…”until someone works all the kinks out of the process, there’s really no point! It didn’t use to be like this. I’ll always vote, but I’ll never count on the integrity of the system.”
“I doubt I’ll ever vote again,” Chris said. “Pointless anymore.”
Others said they’ll always vote.
“I have a husband who gave of himself and lost part of himself to keep this country free,” Vonice said. “I will always stand for religious rights. We cannot become complacent.”
“I will always vote,” Lynn said. “I will make them work to cheat, not just hand it to them with being absent at the polls.”
Nicole said she’ll always vote as well.
“If you’re willing to give up your civil right, that’s on you,” she said. “I have continued to fight for this country that my family has sacrificed to protect. I already wrote Grassley and Ernst about how I can continue to do so. Since Iowa is already on the right side of things, it makes it difficult. I will now be reaching out to state legislators and requesting answers.”
“I don’t believe in laying down or allowing people to walk all over my ass,” Peter said. “That is why we like Trump — he’s no-nonsense. He will fight this and hopefully out of that will not only come a win but also some serious voting reform that the Democrats won’t be able to get around.”
Ty said this election “shatters the illusion” that your vote matters.
“I stood watch for 25 years and my oath has never expired,” he said. “We either fight for this country now or let it die in darkness — each has to choose what they will do.”
At the end of the day, there is no Plan B to America. There is nowhere else in the world to go quite like America. We have to continue to defend our values and our beliefs.
This loss, if it turns out to be a loss, is going to hurt for a while, but it needs to be used as motivation. We need to keep lit the fire that President Trump ignited in so many who had been so silent for so long.
That will require an awakening within the Republican Party.
If you were one of those people who had not been political for years, but came out to work for President Trump, please do not give up. America will continue on, with or without Donald Trump as its President. We’ll still have a “next-generation” that we have to try to look out for.
The pain of this loss will linger for sometime. But the consequences of the loss will be felt even longer. And disengaging will only ensure more pain, more consequences in the future.
So, if you’re down, go ahead and mourn for a bit. But know that we need you to stay in the fight with us. Your country needs you to stay in the fight.