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Here's How Americans Explain Donald Trump For Canadians

We asked people at the Republican National Convention why they believe Donald J. Trump should be leader of the free world.

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Canadians generally don't get the Donald Trump movement. So we walked around outside the Republican National Convention in Cleveland and asked Americans to explain it.

The interviews below have been edited for brevity.

Jesse Gonzalez, Ohio

BuzzFeed News

Donald Trump is really offering a choice between globalism and nationalism.

Throughout the entirety of the West the individual’s purchasing power has gone down due to things like free trade. Trump is just the beginning of that shift in our collective consciousness.

Christian, South Carolina

BuzzFeed News

He’s unlike anything we’ve ever seen in our politics here. But when you compare him to Hillary Clinton, who obviously committed a federal crime and wasn’t prosecuted and gets off on things just because she’s been in the system so long, Donald Trump looks like a hero compared to her.

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Jeffrey Gunter, Ohio

BuzzFeed News

We need a man in office who cares about our lives in America and knows America is struggling. We need to get jobs here quick. There’s violence because there’s no work, everyone is struggling.

So how will Donald Trump solve those problems?

Well, he has connections. He knows how to get things going. He knows what’s going on, he knows that America needs to be fixed, and he knows what he’s going to do.

James Lefeber, Ohio

BuzzFeed News

Obama said that he was going to close Guantanamo Bay, he was going to end the wars. Now we have this conflict in Syria. It hasn’t gotten any better.

They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and thinking you’re going to get a different result. So is Trump different? Yeah. Is he going to work? Well, you know, try and find out and if he doesn’t work try something else.

Michael Ryan, Kentucky

BuzzFeed News

He’s for America first. He’s for protecting Americans. He’s for the Constitution and Bill of Rights, which is the supreme law of the land. He’s for the police. I mean, none of the other politicians are.

Mark, Ohio

BuzzFeed News

I mean really, this is life or death. If Hillary gets in, we’re done as a nation.

Why is that? I keep hearing that.

Because she’s going to take away all our rights. Up in Canada I know you guys are a lot more restrictive than we are here. But the freedoms we have, my grandfather died in the war, my uncles died in WWII, Korea, Vietnam. I’m not going to let their shed blood go to waste.

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Joanne Burroughs, South Carolina

BuzzFeed News

He’s different. He’s different from politicians who just say what they think we want to hear. We’re not real sure exactly what he’s going to do because he’s never been a politician, never been in public office. But we want to give him a chance because what is the alternative?

The alternative is somebody who does not tell the truth, somebody who does not protect our soldiers. That’s the alternative.

Eli, Alaska

BuzzFeed News

Most of Trump’s campaign and rhetoric is tailored more toward Americans, but there are some reasons why people outside of the United States should be hopeful about a Donald Trump campaign.

I think he wants a more humble foreign policy, so he wants to focus more on making America great again rather than getting up in other people’s business. He does want to help maintain the basics of international law and order just without taking so much of an active role in the internal affairs of other countries.

Tex Fischer, Ohio

BuzzFeed News

I think he’s pulling out a lot of non-traditional voters, people who have been disenfranchised with the political process over the past couple of decades.

For a very long time we’ve had politicians in both parties say ‘you’re angry and I understand.’ But for the first time we have someone saying ‘I’m angry too.’

Robert Shinkle, Massachusetts

BuzzFeed News

For Canada to understand the Trump phenomenon you have to recognize that if you didn’t have Barack Obama for two terms imposing socialism and values against prosperity and the American tradition, you wouldn’t have the Donald Trump phenomenon.

This is kind of confusing for Canadians. We look at America and you guys don’t even have true socialized healthcare. We don’t see America as socialist.

Well, if you’re middle class or upper-middle class you basically are being taxed to subsidize the rest, that includes the rich and the poor and everyone who is not working. If you’re working, you’re worse off than you were eight years ago.

Carolyn Shinkle, Massachusetts

BuzzFeed News

I think people are tired of what we’ve had. They’re tired of career politicians. They want people who have experience and expertise outside of working in government.

You know, one of the premises of our country is you don’t become a career politician. You go, you serve, and then you go back to your communities.

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