Analysis: A non-American’s guide to the 2022 US midterms
Donald Trump’s surprise victory has raised the prospect of one of America’s major political shocks ever since.
Here’s an American story so bizarre that it should have its own column. It took place in a little town in Wisconsin in 2006. I’m trying to determine what it means, who is going to lose their jobs and what will happen next for the American voter.
I am on my way to my small town to do a story about a poll worker at the local community centre when his wife turns up in the passenger seat.
“We are the Trump supporters,” she says as she gets out of the car. “My husband and I voted for Donald Trump – I’ve never voted for a Republican before, I hate them. But this time he’s going to win.”
Now, this is the Donald that I have come to know and love, and I want to ask her why she is supporting him.
“I’ve got an eight-day-old baby, and I can’t afford medical care,” she says. “They say a week’s worth of breast-feeding milk costs $300. So if I don’t have that, I’m going to have to get on welfare, I’m going to have to go back to work.”
The couple had voted for Democrat Bill Clinton in the previous election, she explains. “But since he started going negative, he’s become unelectable. The Democrats are not going to win another election.”
“So what is your plan?” I ask.
“I’m going to have to move to Ohio,” she replies. “My husband has family there.”
“Where you’re from, I’m going to vote for Trump,” says another woman. “But I’ve never voted for a Republican before, so I want to get used to it.”
One of the poll workers is trying to persuade us to stay at the meeting hall. He’s trying desperately to persuade me to vote for Democrats, but I’ve got a story to edit, so I go home and write the next story in my head: “Poll worker: ‘If Hillary Clinton wins then I have to go back to living on welfare, because I can’t afford medical care.'”
That was the last time a poll worker tried to talk me into voting against Bush in 2004. I was a senior