Letters to the Editor

Could Trump be a president for all?

To the Editor:

Recently Donald Trump spoke at the NRA convention and promised to roll back gun control measures enacted under Biden and fire the head of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

He was awarded with a roar of approval. However, in a 2023 survey by Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Violence Solutions, there was broad agreement for gun violence prevention policies regardless of political affiliation or gun ownership.

The approved policies include temporary gun restraining orders in domestic violence cases, a family’s ability to remove guns from a relative believed to be at risk of harming self or others, the need to obtain a license before buying a gun, the necessity of locking up guns and ammunition when not in use and the funding of gun violence prevention programs.

While the support for these policies was lowest among Republicans, support ranged from 54-76% among the total group surveyed by Johns Hopkins. Whose vote was Trump seeking that day?

Regarding abortion, Trump has openly touted his pride in nominating three justices to the Supreme Court who were instrumental in overturning Roe v Wade. Trump has been all over the place regarding policy resulting from that decision. In a recent Time magazine interview, he stated it would be up to individual states to determine what rights the government has to monitor women’s pregnancies and/or punish them for obtaining abortions. His comments allowed for the possibility of this kind of control while not clarifying his position. The same is true for outlawing birth control.  

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Abortion continues to be an issue for Americans with 52% identifying as pro-choice and 44% as pro-life. As to the overturning of Roe v Wade, 38% say it was a good thing, while 62 % regard it as negative. Can Donald Trump be their president?

Another issue broadly touted by the candidate is immigration. Border policy has been outdated for at least the last twenty years, in critical need of updating, yet the most recent by-partisan proposal was torpedoed by Republicans under the direction of Donald Trump. According to the Heritage Foundation’s 2025 Plan, which was created with the assistance of Trump allies, in a second term he would ramp up immigration policies restricting both legal and illegal immigrants. Under the proposed plan people from some Muslim majority countries would be banned from entry, reimposing the refusal of asylum claims. Unauthorized immigrants would be rounded up and deported by the millions, being detained in camps while awaiting deportation flights. To facilitate the policy, in addition to federal police, local police and national guard troops would be deputized. The requirement for due process hearings would be eliminated. As many as 11 million undocumented immigrants would be uprooted after years, or even decades, of settling here.  

Views on immigration remain mixed and highly partisan among the U.S. population. According to a 2023 Gallup poll no one is totally satisfied, especially since the bombing of the World Trade Center in 2001 when dissatisfaction was at an all-time high.  Since then, dissatisfaction with immigration has remained steady or increased in older people while it has decreased in younger and middle-aged citizens. When queried in an NPR/Marist Poll in 2024, 57% of registered voters believe welcoming others to our country is essential to our national identity. This is down however from 61% in 2021. That positive number is strongly representative of Democrats rather than Republicans, 84% vs 27%. Independents are slightly skewed to welcoming others, 55% vs 44%. Yet immigration policy is aimed at the older 44% of the electorate that is fearful of welcoming the stranger.  Are these the people for whom Trump is running to be President?

There are more policy issues we could and should address, including taxation, healthcare for all, inflation and global warming to name a few, that would give us a clue to Trump’s intentions.  However, the proposals addressed here, in this letter, and many more put forward in the 2025 Plan, should leave us asking “Does Trump want to be my President?” in addition to “Do I want Trump to be my President?”

Margaret Pickett


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