Voters in Lackawanna County Say Key Issues Led to Trump’s Victory

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CARBONDALE -- One of the closest states in the presidential election was right here in Pennsylvania.

Hillary Clinton and now President Elect Donald Trump fought tooth and nail for the Keystone State's 20 electoral votes.

Democrats won the state in the previous two presidential elections, but this time the Republican won the state by about 73,000 votes.

"Go down to the donut shop and hear a lot of people have switched. My neighbors even, they are Democrats. They switched. I went with Hillary," said Frank Telemko of Carbondale.

Clinton won Lackawanna County, but only by three percent. Back in 2012, President Barrack Obama won by a 12-point margin.

A closer look at the numbers show just how narrow Clintons' victory was in the county. With a 70 percent voter turnout, Clinton won the majority of votes in Scranton. Outside of Scranton, she lost 50 percent to 46 percent.

It seems people were done with Washington politics.

"Disgust, they saw things happen, they didn't want it to be the same," said Michael Klobucai of Jermyn.

Issues like immigration, abortion, and the Supreme Court justices played a major role in the decision making of Lackawanna County voters during the presidential election.

"Unemployment is very high in Luzerne County, and it is a little higher than the state average in Lackawanna County," said Dr. William Parente, political science professor at the University of Scranton.

Parente says Trump was able to connect to more people in Lackawanna County on issues like immigration. Hillary Clinton had to stick to the policies of the  Democratic party.

"She (Hillary) has the policies of the Democratic party and you can't simply abandon those. You've been preaching these polices all these years," said Parente.

Parente went on to say he doesn't expect this blue to red trend to continue in Pennsylvania, but the Democrats have a lot to work on if they expect to compete in 2020.


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