Ryan and Dems must not forget constituents picked Trump

Today we welcome the president of these United States to our Mahoning Valley.

President Donald Trump will speak this evening inside a crowded Covelli Centre, a rare event and an honor, to be sure, for our community to host any sitting president.

Today’s visit offers Trumbull and Mahoning counties a chance to showcase what we have to offer and a possibility that President Trump will see opportunities for growth and economic development here.

While we would have preferred to see him visit Warren, the Youngstown venue where he will speak is just a stone’s throw from Trumbull County, where voters made a drastic and noticeable switch from blue to red last November for the first time since the early 1970s in their support of Donald Trump.

Trump’s victory in Ohio wasn’t a total surprise to some political pundits, but his win in the Democratic stronghold of Trumbull County caught many across the state and the U.S. off guard. That should have sent a message to our local Democrats. Yet six months into his term, what should have been a jolting message to Democrats instead has only hastened their criticism of Trump. It appears that they — like many politicians — believe they know better than the voters. Certainly these voters made a mistake and really didn’t intend to vote Republican, the Democrats must think.

But the truth is that Trump won here and throughout the rest of the United States largely because of his strong economic message and his powerful approach to things that Americans care most about — things like jobs, immigration, military defense and fighting terrorism.

Why is it so hard for our local congressman, U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan, D-Howland, to see that?

In the November election, it was much of Ryan’s 13th Congressional District constituency that supported Trump, whose stand on issues varies drastically from those of Ryan and his Democratic party.

But instead of examining what it was that led Democrats to vote Republican, Ryan has been spending time criticizing Trump and any plans he puts forth. In the days leading up to Trump’s visit here, Ryan was in the forefront of public discussion about what he sees as the president’s broken promises to local residents, criticizing him — just six months into his presidency — for slow growth in jobs, infrastructure development and the growing opioid epidemic.

The economic message that Trump delivered during his campaign was critically important to voters here. It’s time for Ryan, and all the Democrats, both in Washington and at home, to stop sparring and criticizing.

Open the door to cooperation. That’s what truly will make America great again.