Aaron Weissman: Nobody Cares About the Presidential Race

"Nobody's talking about whether they want Trump or Biden, but a lot of people are really looking forward to this political silly season being over."
By | Jul 02, 2024
JPVP 2024
Aaron Weisman

Age: 52
Occupation: Restaurateur

Location: Great Falls, MT
Party Registration: Independent
Jewish Denomination: Reform
2020 Vote: Joe Biden
Current 2024 Vote: Joe Biden
Family: Married, two adult children
News Sources: Great Falls Tribune, Billings Gazette, The Electric (local blog), Apple News, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times,The Boston Globe, The Atlantic, Slate

What’s the atmosphere like in Great Falls?

We’re historically a pretty blue-collar place, historically very union-Democrat. town. But it’s been 40 years since the big employers (copper smelting) all left here. So it’s kind of a difficult environment trying to reinvent our economy in the right way. I’d say that a lot of people have switched to cultural conservatism and embracing Trump. But our nutcase county commissioner just got voted out of office. So that’s positive.

I own a couple of restaurants. I consider myself moderate. People can live however they want to live, but please make a point to show up to work on time or I’ll fire you!

Do the felony convictions diminish Trump? Do they help Biden? Do they change the trajectory of the 2024 race?

I certainly hope that change the trajectory of the 2024 race, I was not going to vote for Trump in the first place. And I’m certainly not going to vote for him now. He was convicted by a jury of his peers. I hope it diminishes him. And I hope people see him for the fraudulent huckster that he is. I think it does put Biden in a better position. If Trump loses some of his support because he’s been convicted as a felon, I do not see how that doesn’t help his opponent.

What kind of political conversation are you hearing?

I don’t hear anybody talking about politics. Nobody cares about the presidential race, at least in their public conversations. Nobody’s talking about whether they want Trump or Biden, but a lot of people are really looking forward to this political silly season being over. It’s a foregone conclusion that Trump is going to win Montana. No one is advertising in Montana. The main race here is for the U.S. Senate (pitting incumbent Democrat John Tester against Trump-backed first-timer Tim Sheehy). They’re neck and neck.

Just to be clear, will you be voting for Biden?

I can’t see any way that I wouldn’t be voting for Biden, right now. I’m definitely never voting for Trump.

What about Israel and Gaza?

Of course, as a Jew in my 50s, I support Israel. But I’m very disappointed in how Netanyahu is choosing to prosecute this war.

What did you make of the candidate’s performances at the first debate?

The Democrats are set to nominate a corpse and the Republicans, a con man. I do not believe that Biden has the ability to carry out the responsibilities of his office. If Biden is the candidate and wins, I fear that we will have a situation similar to the one faced by our county after Wilson suffered his stroke. We can’t afford that. I still will be voting against Trump, regardless, as he is an existential threat to the continued rule of law.

What about the Supreme Court’s recent immunity decision?

We are a constitutional republic, not a monarchy. That decision seems rooted in a desire for a monarchy where we can not and should not hold our “betters” accountable for any of their actions. That is not my understanding of our system of government.

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