Are you a secret Trump supporter in Saskatchewan?
That might be more common than you think.
A University of Saskatchewan poll published this week by CBC found roughly one in five people living in the province agreed with the values of U.S. President Donald Trump.
While 53.5 per cent said they strongly disagreed with Trump’s values, 14.6 per cent of respondents said they “somewhat agree” and 4.8 per cent said they “strongly agree” with Trump’s values.
Three per cent said they did not know, and 4.7 per cent refused to answer.
The real number of Trump supporters in the province may be much higher than the poll indicated. Les MacPherson, a retired StarPhoenix columnist, penned an opinion piece responding to the poll in which he argued many of Trump’s supporters are simply staying quiet.
“There are Americans, at least reportedly, who will not tell their family members or will not tell their friends that they support Trump for fear of being ostracized and cast out,” MacPherson told CKOM/CJME’s John Gormley.
“If people won’t even tell those who they love that they support Trump, what are the odds that they’re going to tell a pollster who calls from out of the blue on the phone that they like Trump? So I suspect the actual numbers would be significantly higher than the poll shows.”
MacPherson said Trump may not hold any appeal in a vacuum, but the controversial president “starts to look pretty good” to some when he is compared to other politicians such as Hillary Clinton or Justin Trudeau.
While Trump’s habit of aggressively attacking his critics and political opponents may cause many to dislike him, MacPherson said many others agree with the tactic and see nothing wrong with the president lashing out at those who would demonize him.
“They call him Hitler, and how’s he supposed to respond to that? He can respond in a nice way like Mitt Romney did and get crushed, or he can fight back,” MacPherson said. “And I like seeing him fight back.”
While many callers took the opportunity to air their grievances with the flaxen-haired president, many others in Saskatchewan expressed their strong support for Trump.
Shane, calling from Estevan, said Trump’s track record should ‘trump’ his effect on fragile feelings.
“Donald Trump was not hired to be somebody’s new best friend,” he said. “You look at the track record – veterans, border security, military, economy – that’s what the man was hired to do.”
“He’s a tell it like it is guy,” Judy told Gormley. “I think he’s doing really well.”
Arnold in Regina also called into Gormley to express his support.
“I think he’s doing a very good job as the leader of the USA,” Arnold said. “I don’t like some of the things he says or the way he puts them, but it’s also a little bit refreshing in a way to hear somebody say what they think.”