After traveling to the longtime Iron Range Democratic stronghold in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, CNN discovered that President Donald Trump has made mining Democrats in the region believers.
When CNN’s Martin Savidge visited the Iron Range – known for mining taconite, a mineral used in steel production – he witnessed a major disconnect with the radical socialist agenda being touted by the Democratic Party and a massive shift toward Trump’s economic policies that has been putting many working class Americans back on their feet.
Trump tide in 2020?
Savidge said a great proportion of residents in this Democratic stronghold resting along Lake Superior in northern Minnesota are casting their ballots for Trump in 2020.
“Once a Democratic stronghold, many of the voters we talk to here say more and more, they align with the president,” Savidge reported on CNN, noting how a mining boom brought prosperity to small towns in the region 40 to 50 years ago.
He asked Robert Vlaisavljevich – the mayor of the mining town of Eveleth for many of the last 18 years – about the magnitude of the Democratic shift toward Trump.
“Are we talking thousands of people sort of shifting and changing their politics?” Savidge inquired.
“Yes – oh, yeah,” Vlaisavljevich affirmed. “Things were just going gangbusters – businesses all over. Then when it crashed, everybody was caught by surprise. It crashed hard.”
Noting how mining jobs in the region dropped from 14,000 in the 1980s to around 4,500 today, Savidge said families and main streets were left to suffer before he described the mayor’s allegiance to Trump.
“He votes Democratic in state races, but he’s got a Trump sticker on his desk, a Christmas card from the president on his bulletin board and the deer on his office wall sports a MAGA hat,” Savidge narrated his piece before confirming the region’s devotion to Trump.
“The political support for the president – part of that is just survival?” Savidge asked Vlaisavljevich.
The Minnesota mayor impressed that Trump in the White House is essential to his city’s livelihood.
“Economics … he’s our guy,” Vlaisavljevich affirmed. “He supports mining. He’s our guy.”
A couple appearing to be in their fifties also confirmed the area’s transformation.
“Her brothers were staunch union Democrats for years, and they’re not anymore,” the husband spoke of his wife’s family.
Savidge impressed that it’s not just Trump’s economic policies that are literally turning the region upside-down politically.
“Trump’s tariffs on imported steel are popular, [and] so is his easing of environmental regulations,” the CNN reporter stressed. “They also like his crackdown on immigration.”
Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) – a member of the controversial “Squad” who supports her colleague’s (Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s) proposed $9 trillion Green New Deal, open borders, abortion and gun control – represents another part of the Democratic Party’s values in Minnesota that are not aligned with the region.
“Among [Minnesota’s] representatives is the radical Muslim congresswoman Ilhan Omar, who was rebuked by her party's leaders for anti-Semitic remarks and described the 9/11 massacre by Muslim jihadists as ‘some people did something," WND noted.
Savidge acknowledged Omar’s unpopularity in the region – just weeks after it was announced her district was rated the worst of all 435 districts in the United States for blacks to live, based on several factors, including unemployment, divisiveness and standard of living.
“In a state that’s 80% white, the influx of Somali refugees has been a contentious issue,” the CNN reporter noted while interviewing Vlaisavljevich. “Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar is a controversial figure here.”
“She offends a lot of people,” the mayor confirmed.
“She’s not popular here,” Savidge pointed out before the mayor agreed.
“No, not at all,” Vlaisavljevich corroborated.“Folks here say they didn’t leave the Democratic Party, the Democratic Party left them.”
Minnesota turning from blue to red?
Only one Republican president – other than Trump presumably in 2020 – has been successful in this deep-blue Democratic stronghold for nearly 90 years.
“Minnesota has voted Democratic in most presidential elections since 1932,” Red State informed. “Nixon won the state in 1972. Since then, no Republican has prevailed in the state – not even Reagan in 1984.”
Ronald Reagan’s Democratic challenger in 1984 was Minnesota native, Walter Mondale.
And with more and more working-class Americans shifting to Trump, some narrow losses in the last presidential election will likely turn into victories for the Republican in 2020.
“In 2016, Trump came close, but lost the state by 1.5%, or 44,765 votes out of nearly 2,700,000 cast,” Red State’s Elizabeth Vaughn recounted. “It’s possible – with even a small shift away from the Democratic Party in the rural areas – that Trump could carry the state in 2020, and I’m sure he will try.”
One Democratic Trump supporter shared his take on why many Democrats are gravitating to Trump.
"Democrats put the miners out of work,” the Minnesotan was quoted on Gateway Pundit. “Trump brought the jobs back."
One social media follower projected that Minnesota’s exodus from the Democratic Party to Trump will proliferate throughout the U.S.
"Imagine my shock,” Susan Critelli tweeted, according to WND. “Now, multiply this by millions in other blue states."