Secure Energy for America, a non-partisan trade association, has launched a voter registration initiative by visiting energy vendors and suppliers in key counties of Southwestern Pennsylvania, the Mahoning Valley of Ohio, and Virginia. It’s hope is to mobilize energy-industry workers, their relatives and neighbors, to vote in November– to keep their jobs and way of life.
This ultimately translates to lifelong Democrats — for the first time in their lives–not voting for a Democrat. Instead, overwhelmingly, they are voting for Donald Trump.
The Atlantic reports:
Democrats in these small communities want to hold on to their way of life; they feel their communities have as much value as those of their more-cosmopolitan Democratic cousins, and they cannot reconcile themselves to a national Democratic Party that they feel is working against them. They are the voters whose simple motivation to vote outside of the party they were born into has fallen under the radar of the national press and the polls.
One energy worker told The Atlantic:
“The short of it is that I am looking at this election through self-preservation. I love my job, I love that I only live three miles from work, I love that who I work for contributes to a stable life, and I love that my community is holding on because of the trickle effect Lee Supply Company’s impact has on the region.”
And she’s voting for Trump. As is everyone else who has come to these initiatives.
This election cycle more Democrats are expected not to vote along Democratic Party lines in these three states. Prior to the 2008 election, Barack Obama said, “if somebody wants to build a coal-fired power plant, they can. It’s just that it will bankrupt them.” He lost Democratic voters then and again in 2012. However, this year, more people observe, “This time it really is personal for these voters.”
“They think it is the celebrity of Trump. It’s not. They think we’ve all gone mad. We’ve not.
“Communities like where I live do not need to shutter and die. We lead solid, honest lives, we work hard, we play hard, we pray hard … we love where we are from, and we feel a duty to make sure that it is here for generations.”
“I think that is what people not from around here don’t understand—we are voting for our lives.”