This Election Is Testing The Republican Loyalties Of Military Voters

From FiveThirtyEight:

Alexander Hale, 25, a philosophy major at Miami University of Ohio, enlisted in the Marine Corps after high school. He served as a logistics and embarkation specialist for Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 121.

Maddie McGarvey


Alexander Hale, 25, says he hasn’t decided which presidential candidate he’ll vote for, but one issue is uppermost in his mind: the drop in military spending under President Obama.1 As a Marine Corps veteran, he says he hopes for a reversal of that cutback.

Donald Trump, he says, is “more likely to start to put funding back into the military. The deployments will be there. There will be more options. Units won’t be hurting for funding so much.” That also might directly affect whether he chooses to rejoin.

Hale, now a philosophy major at the Miami University of Ohio, is one of 22 million veterans living in the United States, a powerful demographic group that trends Republican. There are also 1.3 million active-duty military members, 1.8 million dependents and nearly 741,000 U.S. civilian direct hires. Active-duty military service members are not allowed to speak on the record to the press about their political affiliations, but a July survey by Military Times (described as unscientific, since respondents opt in) found that they preferred Trump to Clinton 2 to 1, though the majority dislike both candidates (61 percent in Trump’s case and 82 percent in Clinton’s).


Hale, shown here stretching at his apartment before going for a jog, says he stays in shape to remain eligible to rejoin the military if he chooses.

Maddie McGarvey


An NBC News/Survey Monkey poll in mid-August found that Trump was leading Clinton by 10 points — …

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