Date of Award

Spring 5-19-2021

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Political Science

First Advisor

Serena Laws


Donald Trump came roaring onto the political stage when he announced his presidential candidacy in 2015. In the years that followed, he amassed a loyal following of motivated voters. During the Trump era, his followers have developed a reputation for loud bigotry, shameless xenophobia, and unmasked white supremacy. The movement has to come to strongly resemble the nativist populism that, until Trump, was generally confined to Europe. In order to better understand the motivation of Trump voters and their intense dedication to the 45th president, I surveyed 82 voters from the Midwest about their feelings towards politicians, policies, and political opponents. The Midwestern Swing District Voter Survey offers both qualitative and quantitative responses and suggests that Trumpism has redefined identity politics for Trump and Biden voters alike. I find that the great consequence of Donald Trump is not the mass movement of white working class Americans to the Republican party, it is the accelerated evolution of the identity of cultural whiteness that has come to bind together the Republican base.