I wondered last week how Wyoming Republicans – who supported Donald Trump more enthusiastically than any other state in 2020 – feel about Trump's attacks on Ron DeSantis.
And I got an earful.
I wrote that while I voted for Trump in the last two elections, I've been swearing at my television lately whenever one of Trump's ads trashing DeSantis comes on.
Most comments were from folks who agree that Trump should lay off DeSantis.
Almost half of the comments were in the form of emails, which is unusual. Normally, those who comment do so on Facebook, where the posts can be pretty negative. They don't take prisoners on Facebook.
I got 20 emails regarding the column, maybe because their comments were to me, and not out there on Facebook for anyone to shoot down.
One email response called Trump's trashing of DeSantis “obnoxious, juvenile behavior.” A writer from Moorcroft agreed, and said if the choice in 2024 is between Trump and Biden, “I'm not looking forward to the election.”
A writer from Jackson, who is 72, my age, agreed that if Trump is the nominee, he would vote for him over Biden, “but I'll be holding my nose,” and might need “a stiff drink.” (I replied, “Make mine a Manhattan – a double.”)
A friend emailed that if elected in 2024, Trump would spend four years focused on past grievances, “rather than looking ahead like DeSantis would.”
A former Wyoming resident said, “Trump did many good things for our country, but he's so drunk on Trumpness that he can't see the ruin he causes by being completely unreasonable.”
A Sheridan reader agreed that Trump is being unreasonable, and hopes “legal issues will cook his goose.”
A reader in Powell cited the deficit spending during Trump's four years (very high) and I responded that he'll get no argument from me over crazy spending by both parties.
A Sheridan reader said she agrees that Trump should pipe down about DeSantis, but “thanks to social media, we are all in a cesspool of lies, threats and mud slinging that only gets worse.”
One email disagreed that Trump should lay off DeSantis, because DeSantis was disloyal to Trump in running against him. And that DeSantis started the fight when “he said he has no experience paying hush money to a porn star,” unlike Trump.
Another writer said, “I do not appreciate Trump's attacks. As a person he disgusts me.”
Most memorable was an email that agreed that at 72, I probably won't see many more elections, but that in the meantime, my crazy political beliefs will destroy the futures of my granddaughters. Ouch. But, I recognized this person's name from previous scorching emails, and responded that even though we never agree, it was good to hear from him again. His response couldn't have been more cordial, which was downright refreshing.
Over on Facebook, the column received 31 comments, most of them along the line of “Trump's time has come and gone,” that he's running “to stay out of prison,” and one post that said, “I can't wait for them (Trump and Biden) to eat each other.”
Then they got into whether Trump accomplished anything, which quickly turned to Supreme Court appointments, and 16 replies of folks going at each other about the court. Which was fine with me because they were attacking each other, not me.
As they say, “Let's you and him fight.”
One Facebook post quoted my column extensively, and asked how I could support Trump in the past, but criticize him today. Easy. I've always said I wished he would pick his fights more wisely, but that he did a lot of good. Haven't you ever liked certain things about a person, but not other things?
(My wife says there are even things she doesn't like about me, but I find that hard to believe.)
Bottom line: No surprises.
Wyoming will obviously still go big for Trump if he's the nominee in 2024. But most folks out here wish he'd put a lid on his attacks on DeSantis, an emerging bright light in the party who would pursue a Trump-like agenda, but without all the drama and baggage.
Dave Simpson can be reached at: DaveSimpson145@Hotmail.com