- "A lot of folks are actually relatively pessimistic," he said
- Trump won 72% of white men without a college degree, exit polls show
"I think a lot of folks are actually relatively pessimistic about whether Trump can solve all of their problems," said Vance, author of "Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis." "There is this recognition that there isn't necessarily a political solution to all of these issues."
Trump won 72% of white men without a college degree and 62% of white women without a college degree, according to exit polling.
Vance, who grew up poor in the Rust Belt, said many Trump voters do not support his offensive campaign trail rhetoric about Latinos, African-Americans and other groups.
"I definitely think there's an element of racial anxiety to Trump's support, but I think it would be a real mistake to chalk it all up to that or mostly to that," said Vance, a Yale Law School graduate.
"The people I know that are voting for Donald Trump, a lot of times, they don't like the rhetoric he's using but they say, 'We don't like his rhetoric, but he's the only guy that's come along in a very long while who's actually talked to those issues,' " he said.
Trump was backed by the KKK's official newspaper and praised by white nationalists, such as former KKK leader David Duke. The Trump campaign disavowed Duke's backing.