We are a Nearly Perfectly Polarized Nation


With 8 days left until we elect a new president, Morning Consult decided to poll the American public about the Comeygate emails that nobody has seen and which may or may not even be anything be new. The results are kind of perfect. They asked which is worse: Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server, or Donald Trump’s comments on women, Muslims, Mexicans, and other minority groups? The answer:

  • Democrats: Trump’s comments, 85-12, percent.
  • Independents: A tie, 44-44 percent.
  • Republicans: Clinton’s email server, 82-10 percent.

Elsewhere, they asked about Trump’s comment that Clinton’s use of a private server was worse than Watergate. Among Republicans, 82 percent said it was. I wonder if they would have agreed if Trump said it was worse than the Holocaust?

I do wonder sometimes what these folks think is in these emails. I mean, suppose the worst: Hillary Clinton set up the private server in a deliberate attempt to evade FOIA and allow her staff to delete embarrassing emails. What do they think she would have inexplicably fessed up to on her BlackBerry? The mythical stand down order on Benghazi? That she really did order a hit on Vince Foster? Her plan to take away everybody’s guns once she becomes president? It’s a mystery.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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