According to the AFL-CIO, 42 per cent of its members – overwhelmingly white – voted for Trump. That is fewer than in 2016, but after 4 years of Trumpian anti-working class policies and extremist rhetoric, the obvious question is why such a modest slip in support? And what about other sections of the working class – again overwhelmingly white workers – that supported him in his first campaign? Polls suggest that their support hasn’t declined in any significant way either. Any reliable profile of Trump’s mass/ fascist base has to be arrived at empirically, not derived from what abstract Marxist theory tells us it looks like – the despised petit bourgeoise and middle strata. Marxist theory gives us a point of entry and way of looking at a phenomenon, but not too much more than that.
An addendum: Abstract theorizing gives us a way of looking at the phenomenon, a point of entry. but only that. It has to be followed by concrete and empirical analysis of fascism’s base. To assume that its base includes only the “middle strata’ or people in contradictory class locations or sections of capital is a mistake – a big one in fact.