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The Brexit and Trumptrance: 3 commonalities between the Brexit and Trump

By J. Nick PittsJune 30, 2016

Man standing in front of Big Ben in London
Man standing in front of Big Ben in London Flickr

The UK is leaving the European Union and Donald Trump may become the next President of the United States. One has been called the “Brexit.” The potential of a Trump presidency has been called everything from a disaster to a long-awaited restoration of greatness. But if you leave through an exit and you enter through the entrance, it makes sense to term the potential of a Trump presidency a “Trumptrance.” His supporters are in a type of trance, firmly believing he has the potential to make American great again.

Much like the Brexit, there are similarities that demonstrate what happened in the UK could ripple across the pond to create a larger Trumptrance. 


1. Unrest

Donald Trump and Boris Johnson — the leader of the Leave campaign and former mayor of London — have both tapped into a public mood of dissatisfaction. 66 percent of voters in the U.S. reveal that the country is headed in the wrong direction. In the UK, 69 percent were dissatisfied with the direction of their country, explaining their votes for leaving the EU. For Brexiters, European bureaucrats in Brussels are to blame. In the US, career politicians in Washington are at fault.

Donald Trump hosts Nevada caucus night watch party In Las Vegas.
Donald Trump hosts Nevada caucus night watch party In Las Vegas.Ethan Miller/Getty

2. Immigration 

In ten years, immigrants will make up half of London. The recent refugee crisis, coupled with indigenous births, would officially make London one of the world’s megacities — passing the 10 million mark — for the first time ever in ten years. Americans are intimately acquainted with the immigration crisis. There are over 11 million illegal immigrants here in the U.S. Though we are a nation of immigrants, we are also a nation of laws. Mr. Trump wants to both build a wall and bar Muslims from entering the country temporarily — to keep America safe and allow for the assimilation process to take effect. Approximately 70 percent of voters say immigration was the number one reason for their vote to leave the EU. In America, 76 percent of Republicans polled believe immigration to be a top issue. 

Polling form for Britain to leave EU
Polling form for Britain to leave EUFlickr

3. Pride

Boris Johnson advocated for a departure from the EU because he believed inclusion detrimentally affected the UK’s own identity. Robert Tombs, a professor at St. John’s College, Cambridge and the author of “The English and Their History” commented on the subject. 

“The campaign seems hardly about Europe at all, but it’s all about us and the English identity,” he noted. “There is a deep-seated sense that we the people ought to make decisions and not be led by an elite and not be told what to do by foreigners, even by the ones we like.” For Trump, it is as simple as a bumper sticker: “Make America Great Again.”

Last Friday, the world watched as the “Brexit” became a reality. Coincidentally, Trump was in Scotland opening a new golf resort and sharing his great affinity for the game. By no means is the “Brexit” a guarantee that Trump will be elected. But the vote did defy expectations and predictions, much like Mr. Trump continues to defy expectations across the pond.

Protestors holding signs about Britain's decision to leave the EU.
Protestors holding signs about Britain's decision to leave the EU.Flickr