It's not that think that the issues you mention aren't relevant to the lives of rural voters. It's that I think that, mostly, they aren't voting with those issues in mind. I made a trip through the Ohio countryside recently and saw several pro-Trump displays...not just signs, displays. Ohio rural counties voted for Trump by big margins as in 75% to 20%. Those voters weren't casting ballots for Trump because they believed he'd support broadband to their homes and advocate for rural hospitals.
My focus is on raising voting rates in cities. There's a black precinct in Cleveland that had 10% turnout in the recent presidential election. If my own hometown of Akron had a voter turnout equal to the Ohio state average, it would balance the GOP votes of several red counties in western Ohio.
None of this is to say that we have no chance whatsoever in rural areas. I actually believe that a strongly (and truly) populist message and policies would get us more votes from rural white voters.
It just bugs me when I see articles in the eastern press and hear my fellow liberals wringing their hands about "understanding rural voters" while urban precincts have voter turnout of 30%.
Good discussion. Keep up the good articles.