Here's why the excuse for Donald Trump's measly Inauguration turnout doesn't hold up

Source: AP
Source: AP

President Donald Trump did not get the "unbelievable ... record-setting turnout" he predicted for his inauguration on Friday, and instead was greeted by a National Mall hosting a crowd estimated to be a third of the size of President Barack Obama's first inauguration in 2009.

Those looking to defend Trump's crowd size said that "working-class" voters couldn't take the time off work to travel to the swearing-in, unlike the "coastal elites" who showed up to Obama's inaugurations, as well as the Women's March on Saturday — which saw massive turnout

However that argument doesn't hold up, given that exit polling showed Trump winning middle-class voters over Hillary Clinton. Voters who made between $50,000 and $200,000 voted for Trump by a slim margin, according to CNN exit polling. Clinton, on the other hand, won voters who made less than $50,000 by a wide margin.

In fact, an analysis by FiveThirtyEight's Nate Silver found it was education level — not income — that predicted Trump's support.

Similarly, people from non-coastal states and cities showed up to the Women's March, busting the narrative that only "coastal elites" went to the march.

Trump has yet to tweet about the smaller crowds that showed up to watch him take the oath of office. But should he make the argument that he doesn't have the support of wealthy people who can travel, the numbers have already proven him wrong. 

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Emily C. Singer

Emily C. Singer, née Cahn, is a senior writer for Mic covering politics. She is based in New York and can be reached at esinger@mic.com

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