July 27, 2016
Pennsylvania's Amish population is a little more than 70,000 people, second only to neighboring Ohio.
And if a newly formed Political Action Committee gets its way, they'll be swinging the election for Donald Trump.
It was reported on conservative news website Breitbart Tuesday that the Amish PAC had unveiled a billboard in Lancaster endorsing Trump.
There's a super PAC to convince Amish people to vote for Trump. This billboard is on south 7th St near Akron pic.twitter.com/DKFqRGbmv9— Beccah Hendrickson (@BeccahHWGAL) July 25, 2016
The PAC, according to NewsWorks, was recently created to energize an "untapped bloc of conservative voters."
Its spokesperson, Ben King, is a former member of the Amish community. He explained to NewsWorks why he believes the Christian group, which is known for spurning many modern technological conveniences in favor of a simple lifestyle, could play a major role in the presidential election:
"The Amish are a very conservative community on all the issues of the day," King said. "It comes down to, who's going to most allow the country to function like it has functioned. The Amish might not agree with the personality and character of Donald Trump, but the alternative is far worse."
Voter turnout among the Amish is typically low unless there is a local issue on the ballot, according to researchers at Elizabethtown College.
Several pundits, analysts and politicians have noted that Pennsylvania — a blue state in presidential races since 1988 — could be in play for Trump this year. Which is why the PAC believes the Amish vote could decide between the "next president being a Republican... or Hillary Clinton."
King told NewsWorks the PAC is working to get members of the Amish community fliers providing information on policy (they don't use the internet) and eventually transporting them to polling places (they mainly travel by horse and buggy).
How are they selling the bombastic Trump to a group known for its humble ways? They note how Trump's business is "truly family-run," that he's never held elected office and that he'll appoint pro-life Supreme Court justices.
Oh, and that he doesn't drink.