The Slatest

Conservative Magazine Declares That White Trump Voters Are Welfare Bums and Dope Fiends

A shuttered convenience store in Berkeley Springs, West Virginia.



One thing that’s become apparent during this election is that there is a gap between Republican voters and Republican thought leaders (top party figures, pundits, etc.) on certain issues. Donald Trump is winning GOP primaries by slamming Republican-backed free trade deals and calling the most significant decision of the party’s most recent president (the invasion of Iraq) a disaster. Given this, it was perhaps inevitable that conservative partisans would lash back at the working-class white voters who support Trump, but even so, the contempt with which a new National Review piece attacks poor white Middle American families is remarkable. From Kevin Williamson’s “The Father-Führer” (which is behind a paywall but is quoted in this post by a National Review colleague): 


If you spend time in hardscrabble, white upstate New York, or eastern Kentucky, or my own native West Texas, and you take an honest look at the welfare dependency, the drug and alcohol addiction, the family anarchy—which is to say, the whelping of human children with all the respect and wisdom of a stray dog—you will come to an awful realization. … The truth about these dysfunctional, downscale communities is that they deserve to die. 


Adds Williamson’s colleague, David French, in harsh terms that other right-wing writers have more typically used to describe nonwhite “welfare queens“:

And that’s where disability or other government programs kicked in. They were there, beckoning, giving men and women alternatives to gainful employment. You don’t have to do any work (your disability lawyer does all the heavy lifting), you make money, and you get drugs. 

Later in the piece, French alludes to Williamson’s arguments that underemployed whites should move (via U-Haul) to places where there are more jobs available:

If getting a job means renting a U-Haul, rent the U-Haul. You have nothing to lose but your government check.


Read more Slate coverage of the GOP primary.