Let’s Not Give Ourselves Too Much Credit. Americans Voted For Donald Trump Because A Lot Of Us Are Stupid.

Last December I wrote a piece for The Huffington Post titled “Donald Trump Thinks Americans Are Stupid. And You Know What? He Might Be Right.

It turns out, there was no “might” about it.

Donald Trump was elected President last week. He’ll be sworn in as the 45th President of the United States in January. And just as I did in December, I’m here to tell you once again it’s the stupidity of the American voter – and Donald Trump’s ability to exploit it! – that won him the job.

I know you’ve heard plenty of other expert opinions and analyses on how Mr. Trump won this election: economic anxiety in the Rust Belt; Hillary Clinton’s unfavorability numbers; Hillary’s inability to reach out to struggling, middle class Americans; Democrats' inability to choose the right candidate (how many Berniacs have been saying “I told you so!”); Americans who are fed up with Hollywood elites, and Washington, and the status quo. The list goes on and on.

And you know what? These might sound like sensible explanations to the average policy wonk who makes a living analyzing these things, but to me, it still avoids the undeniable, obvious truth that I wrote about last year: Many American voters, for better or worse, are just plain stupid.

Let’s break this down. If you think economic anxiety in the Rust Belt got Donald Trump elected, think again. The unemployment rate in Wisconsin is 4.1%. In Michigan, it’s 4.6%. In Pennsylvania, it’s 5.7%. At the height of the recession, it was 9.1%, 14.9% and 8.6%, respectively, in these three “Rust Belt” states. So don’t be fooled. The Rust Belt has jobs. The people who live there have economic stability. They have income. They’re in a better place today than they were eight years ago, even one year ago, but they let Donald Trump convince them otherwise. Why? I don’t know. Maybe because they’re stupid?

Likewise, if you think it’s struggling, middle class Americans who voted for Donald Trump, you’re wrong again. The median income of the average Trump voter is $72,000/year. That’s well above the median income of Hillary’s supporters, and it hardly qualifies as “struggling.” The fact is Trump voters have money. They have income. They have economic stability. Just like the “Rust Belters”, they’re in a better place today than they have been in years, but they let Donald Trump convince them otherwise. Why? See above.

As for Hillary’s unfavorability numbers, I’ll admit, she never was the most likeable candidate! In fact, according to several polls, she was the second most unlikable candidate in history – right behind the guy who defeated her, Donald Trump. So if you think Hillary’s unlikability cost her the election, how do you explain the fact that the guy who beat her is the only candidate in America that voters liked even less? It makes no sense - unless, of course, you’re stupid.

And don’t tell me Americans are fed up with the status quo. Don’t tell me they’re fed up Washington and Hollywood elites, and fed up with politics as usual. They voted for a reality TV star who flies around the country in a $100 million private jet; goes golfing with Tom Brady, Bill Clinton, and scores of other Washington and Hollywood elites; and is already filling his administration with political insiders like Rudy Giuliani and Newt Gingrich. Six-Pack Jack he ain’t, and he’s certainly no Washington outsider. But Americans let Trump convince them otherwise.

Sure, Democrats could have run a different candidate, but would it have made a difference? Bernie Sanders was a far more likable candidate than Hillary, but John Kasich was far more likable than Donald Trump. It didn’t stop Trump from beating Kasich in the GOP primary, and it probably wouldn’t have stopped him from beating Bernie Sanders.

The point is, regardless of how you look at it, we’re right back to what I wrote in December: Many American voters, for better or worse, are just plain stupid. They got taken for a ride in 2016, and Donald Trump was the guy who took them there.

He told them he’d build a wall and make Mexico pay for it. Now he says it might be a fence, and Mexico says it won’t pay for anything. It doesn’t matter. Americans voted for him anyway.

He told Americans he’d assemble deportation forces to root out illegal immigrants. Now, House Speaker Paul Ryan says there won’t be any deportation forces. It doesn’t matter, because Americans voted for Trump anyway.

He told Americans he’d ban all Muslims from entering the United States! Then he said he’d ban just the ones from “terror states.” Just days after he was elected, there was no mention of a Muslim ban at all on his website. Again, none of this matters, because Americans voted for Trump anyway.

He ridiculed the handicapped, belittled a prisoner of war, insulted the Gold Star parents of a dead soldier, openly boasted about sexually assaulting women, and said just about every outrageous, despicable thing a candidate can say to lose an election… And still, he won anyway.

This, my friends, is not on Hillary. It’s not even on Trump. It’s on the voters themselves. They were too stupid to see through Trump’s charade, and Trump rode their ignorance to victory.

Blame Hillary all you want. Blame it on the Rust Belt. Blame it on economic anxiety. I’m not buying any of it, because it doesn’t add up. Donald Trump is our President-elect because a lot of us – the ones who vote, anyway – are just. Plain. STUPID.

In December I wrote this: “Trump doesn’t just believe America is stupid; he’s banking on it. And so far, it’s working.”

I was right. He was banking on it, it worked, and now Donald Trump is laughing to the bank. And the White House.

This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email.