Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Local Coverage of Trump's Minnesota Pitch

I've never seen anything like this on TV before. Watch the video below. It's Fargo television personality Chris Berg offering his "Point of View" (the name of his show) about Trump's pitch to Minnesotans. For those who don't know North Dakota geography, Fargo borders Minnesota and this was broadcast to swaths of Western MN and the Eastern stretch of my own ND.

Jump in at 2:41 to see the coverage most relevant to immprofs. Berg explains why so many of "les déplorables" showed up to Trump's Minnesota rally and why he thinks Trump just might carry the state: immigration and refugee resettlement.

Berg shows a clip of Trump's MN rally where the presidential nominee said: "A Trump administration will not admit any refugees without the support of the local community where they are being placed. It's the least they can do for you. You've suffered enough in Minnesota." (Emphasis mine.)

When they return from the clip, Berg is smiling and laughing. He says, "You can just hear the cheering."

In introducing the next clip, Berg again is smiling ear-to-ear, telling viewers to pay attention to the chanting that will come after Trump's words. Berg himself then chants "USA! USA!"

Here's what Trump said:

Hillary wants ... virtually unlimited immigration and refugee admissions from the most dangerous regions of the world to come into our country. And to come into Minnesota. And you know it better than anybody. Her plan will import generations of terrorism, extremism and radicalism into your schools and throughout your communities. You already have it. When I'm elected president, we will suspend the Syrian refugee program and we will keep radical Islamic terrorists the hell out of our country.

And, indeed, after these words, the crowd does chant "USA! USA! USA!"

Berg returns from the clip grinning: "He was just crushing it."

Here's what's new to me as a TV viewer: In terms of Berg, it's the evident fervor - the glee in his voice and the relish in his eyes. I realize he's a television personality, brought to the station to offer an opinion, but I was embarrassed as a North Dakotan. I'll note that in the past, Berg has decried claims that he is "a right-wing mouthpiece regurgitating Republican talking points." He sees himself as "striking a pretty good balance."

As for Trump - let's be clear what he's really talking about when he says "You've suffered enough." He's talking about living with Minnesota's ethnic Somali population, which started with Somali refugees. The twin cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul are home to the largest population of Somali-Americans in the United States.

Not only that - Trump's rally took place at the Minneapolis St-Paul airport. As anyone who has ever traveled through MSP can tell you, it's a facility that wouldn't operate without its estimated 1,000-strong ethnically Somalian workforce

Who knows what will happen with the election today. But I think this clip is illuminating in terms of identifying the appeal of Trump and the passion he inspires in many.



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