The Big Problem That's Luring Working-Class White Men Toward Trump

Between 1996 and 2014, white blue-collar workers have seen their incomes drop by 9 percent — and it is making them turn to Donald Trump.

Working Class

Working class white men are witnessing their income drop — and it's getting them worried.

A new study by Sentier Research released Wednesday analyzed government data on wage and salary income and compared white men with a high school diploma and white men with at least a bachelor’s degree.

The study looked at the incomes earned in 1996 by 10 groups of men ranging from 25 to 44 years in age. Sentier then looked at the average incomes of those same men 18 years later and found out the working class men experienced a drop of 9 percent from $40,362 to $36,787. In comparison, the white male college graduates experienced a rise of nearly 23 percent from $77,209 to $94,601.

The report found a similar trend in the previous 18 years. Between 1978 and 1996, white blue collar workers saw their incomes decline by 10.7 percent while college graduates witnessed an income growth of 30.4 percent.

No wonder the white collar workforce is frustrated.

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Their resentment has made them give their support to Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump who has ranted against illegal immigration, free-trade agreements and outsourced workforce. In the Republican National Convention on July 21, Trump has called these people “forgotten men and women of our country” and promised to give them “a voice.”

The analysis proves the fact that college education pays for itself in the long run and the gap in earnings between a high school graduate and college graduate has increasingly widened in the last few decades.

In a previous research study, economist Jed Kolko found out that white men, older Americans and people who have less education are prone to make a profession of jobs that are likely to shrink.

Another study by White House economists showcased a pattern of working-age men not working on the rise — a trend that is higher among men with no college education.

Read More: The Rich Are Getting Richer As American Middle Class Melts Away: Study