As this points out, there's a direct line from Nixon through Reagan to Trump. Same tactics, different faces.
Here in Arkansas, so many of my students have been taught that Reagan was a great president, and a hero who saved America. When I point out he was -- like Trump -- a grifter who was bent on filling the pockets of the 1%, a president who destroyed the American middle-class, they can't think what I mean.
Often we hear that the Southern Strategy was just a tactic, a way for Nixon and then Reagan to get votes from (racist) Southern white men. And I'll agree that was a tactic they used. But it wasn't just a tactic. Just as Trump is racist to the core, so were they.
then–California Governor Ronald Reagan phoned President Richard Nixon at the White House and vented his frustration at the delegates who had sided against the United States. “Last night, I tell you, to watch that thing on television as I did,” Reagan said. “Yeah,” Nixon interjected. Reagan forged ahead with his complaint: “To see those, those monkeys from those African countries—damn them, they’re still uncomfortable wearing shoes!” Nixon gave a huge laugh.
Anyone who is surprised by this revelation hasn't been paying attention.
See also this, bc it ain't just Trump.