by Phil Duncan
While Trump’s victory is certainly an indication of widespread alienation from the political establishment in the United States, it is far from the main sign of alienation revealed by the election.
The total number of people in the USA eligible to vote is 231,556,622. Of these, 99,815,122 didn’t vote. That’s over 43%. That’s by far the dominant form that alienation takes.
Donald Trump received only 59,791,135 votes. He actually received almost 2 million fewer votes that Romney, the unsuccessful Republican candidate in 2012, although there may be some late totals which bring Trump a bit closer. And, of course, he received several hundred thousand fewer votes than Hillary Clinton who took 60,071,781.
A close examination of votes from all over the States would be necessary to see whether Trump lost Republican votes in metropolitan centres but largely made up for such losses in smaller centres and rural across the country.
Nevertheless, of those eligible to vote in the election, Trump received about 25.8% of the vote.
What happened, primarily, was that Clinton lost votes compared to Obama in 2012. She received almost 7 million (6.8 million to be precise) fewer votes than Obama did in 2012.
So the second main sign of alienation was the decline in the Democratic Party vote.
Trump’s was still an impressive achievement. After all, the Republican Party establishment didn’t even want him to be selected as the party’s candidate. Then, most of the US ruling class appears to have been against him in the presidential election itself. So, the results were a slap in the face for both of them, although the US ruling class has plenty of checks and balances in place to prevent Trump from simply doing as he pleases – or as he has promised his supporters.
However, despite what more panicky liberal elements are suggesting – a tide of reactionary politics being unleashed – there simply was no big surge of support for the billionaire tax evader with a string of bankrupt companies, straying hands and idiosyncratic ideas about what US capitalism needs right now.