“See these hands? Working hands, I’ve worked all my life. Paid taxes out the yin-yang. And that’s what I want, people working. There’s too many damn people on welfare,” said Donald Trump voter Ken Buehler.
Buehler opened up his metal shed of a home to two complete strangers: a professor and her student. The white door pulled inward and a new world was exposed.
“I am one of the Forgotten Men,” he said. “These are calluses on these hands.”
Trump’s face was on the screen on FOX News straight ahead on the flat screen; Buehler was standing to the left and, on the right, was his $60,000 car, which he doesn’t use since has everything he needs in his garage.
At age 73, Buehler’s retired and living in his garage. With 10 Donald Trump signs in his possession, Buehler’s 4×8 foot bright neon sign of Trump outside his home tops them all. He’s located near the Mississippi River on a barren road. There are no street lights, but that’s okay, as you’ll still see his Trump sign or in this case, “rump.” Somehow the “T” went missing. Buehler’s sign contains its own lights, showcasing his support for the new president-elect. He even includes his phone number, although it’s unclear why.
He’s from Iowa, but lives in Wisconsin, and he flipped his vote from Barack Obama in 2008 to Mitt Romney and then Trump. He lives in Crawford County, Wisconsin, which has among the highest percentage of voters in the country who flipped from Obama to Trump.
His clothing fit the scenery of Western Wisconsin, worn out and dull. He had on a grey hoodie, blue jeans with grey strands of hair reaching for the ceiling of his garage.
“I wasn’t into this politics sh-t, until Trump.”
Buehler believes Trump’s businessman demeanor is the change America needs.
After the first four years, he felt Obama turned on everyone.
“He promised the moon and gave you the shaft.”
Back then he thought it was time for a black president; America needed change.
Buehler’s worked two-three jobs at once, his entire life.
“We haven’t got a social security raise for how many years?” Even if he was to receive a raise, he said it’s used to pay back Medicaid.
He’s been a farmer and owner of a grocery store. Buehler worked in a factory for 15 years and was even a part of the union. He used to make register vents for Sears Tower, until his job moved to Mexico. He believes Trump will bring jobs back to America; he’s a businessman not a politician, according to Buehler.
His family originally came from Norway to Iowa for labor (factory jobs). His dad was German and he had a family of farmers, so it’s not surprising he voted for Trump. Farmers seem to love Trump because he promises to get rid of farm restrictions.
In 1988, Buhler moved to Ferryville, Wisconsin, where he opened a store, that he now lives in. It doubles as a garage, cars and all, right next to the corner where he’s created his living room. He sold guns, ammunition, liquor, hardware, plus he tagged and registered deer. He sold out of his garage for 20-30 years, but now he spends his time watching FOX news. Buehler still has old cases of things he used to sell. He has everything he needs in his garage, even a bed to sleep in.
Buehler has a 72-year old wife, who still works. She lives inside in their home, while Buehler lives in his garage surrounded by cars, with a cross on the wall. They’ve been married for 52 years, and they’re a happily married couple, according to him.
When asked why he voted for Trump, Buehler made it clear he wasn’t prejudiced. He voted for Trump in hopes the President-elect will secure the borders and enforce the law. Obama didn’t do enough when it came to protecting the police, said Buehler. He doesn’t like disorder, and protesters bother him a lot. He didn’t like the anti-police protests in the cities, and he wasn’t happy about the Act 10 protests in Madison over Governor Scott Walker’s collective bargaining law.
Just like many other Trump voters in the area, Buehler also voted for Trump because he dislikes Hillary Clinton.
“She actually killed four people,” he said, referring to Benghazi and the people who died there. “Trump is only accused of cuddling women.”
Buehler wasn’t bothered by Trump’s comments about women.
“Locker room talk is locker room talk. If guys don’t talk like that, they aren’t guys.”
Buehler is a true Trump fan. He has a lot of faith in Trump and hopes he’s not disappointed in the next four years. Trump’s signature slogan, “Make America Great Again,” isn’t something Buehler agrees with, though.
“We’ve always been great. We’re paying everyone’s bill.”
Even though he doesn’t like Obama and is a fan of Trump, Buehler would’ve voted for Michelle Obama if she ran for president.
One thing Buehler wanted people to remember is, he is the person everyone pays no attention to. He wouldn’t stop talking to the strangers as they exited his shed home; he had lifetime of stories he wanted the world to finally hear and, until now, almost no one asking for them.
Buehler is a white man in America and feels he is forgotten. With Trump in office, Buehler is sure he will be noticed again.