Many people in the interior American West are instinctively conservative. One of the issues that sometimes exercise them is the intrusive role of the federal government in their lives. For years, for example, legislators and bureaucrats from the heavily populated East set slow speed limits for highways in the sparsely populated western states. And, of course, the federales either own or control vast areas of the American West.
Some in the West no doubt see Donald Trump as their champion.
They like his irreverence toward the “Establishment,” the way he seems to speak his mind, his independence. It appeals to their sense of themselves as heirs to the free culture of America’s frontier.
On this issue, though, he clearly isn’t on their side. He’s an east coast liberal.
You see, he doesn’t trust the states. He doesn’t believe that they’re capable of governing themselves.
It’s long been apparent that he’s something of an aspiring caudillo, with little or no respect for the Constitution or its vital principle of the separation of powers. And it’s now clear that he’s not a really big advocate of federalism, either. He would further concentrate power in Washington DC, and specifically in the White House.
Americans who believe in limited government should be extremely wary of Mr. Trump. Westerners, in particular, should think long and hard before giving him their support.