Folks who have seen the abundant evidence that President Donald Trump is the worst president in American history are horrified that more than 68 million of their fellow citizens voted to give him another four years to wreak havoc on our republic.

Democrats who had dreams of a big blue wave sweeping the nation were shocked that, instead, a red tide swept over many parts of the country, drowning hopes for a Democratic majority in the Senate and a landslide for Joe Biden. They are now wondering how so many people could see in Trump anything but a loutish, aspiring autocrat concerned with no one’s interests but his own.

The phenomenon of the Trump supporter has many dimensions, but the overriding one is simple: Trump voters swim in a completely different information pool than everyone else. Trump fans have either never heard details of the many Trump administration scandals or they discount them as fake news. And this is most likely because they are Fox News viewers.

Go into any bar, cafe, barber shop or even private home in the heart of any Republican-leaning region and, if a TV is tuned to a news channel, it will, invariably, be Fox, the lair of Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham, Tucker Carlson and a bevy of conspiracy theorists and right-wing celebrity hustlers. Even the straight news on Fox is carefully curated to leave out or minimize the damning evidence of Trump’s abundant corruptions. If, like so many of the good folk in rural and working class America, Fox is one’s only source of information, voting for Trump would not only make sense, it would be a patriotic duty. 

Happening simultaneously with the disappearance of responsible, reliable community newspapers in hundreds of communities, the rise of Fox and other right-wing media has been a central factor in the creation of this country’s deep political divide. And it explains why a second term for Trump was never unthinkable. 

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