The 2016 Presidential Election Comes to a Close

Donald Trump defeats Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Presidential election.

The election of 2016 has been called by CNN “One of the most stunning upsets in American political history” as Donald Trump was named the next President of the United States, shocking voters around the nation and around the world. Since April 12, 2015 when Hillary Clinton announced her candidacy for the President of the United States, election season in America has seen many ups and downs that have redefined the country and divided our nation.

Going into Election Day, most of the polls had Clinton leading. On Monday November 7, the final FOX News poll showed Clinton leading Trump 48% to 44%, the final NBC news poll had Clinton beating Trump 51% to 44%, and finally, the last Bloomberg Politics general election poll showed Clinton beating Trump 44% to 41%.

According to MSNBC, on Tuesday, “Clinton’s advantage in national polling [was] somewhere in the range of about three points” based on a collection of polls such as NBC News, SurveyMonkey, Bloomberg politics, and Fox News. Even with this encouraging lead, MSNBC’s Steven Benen warned voters that “to assume Trump will lose is a mistake.”

As election night began, Clinton supporters began to lose confidence as Trump started out strong, winning states like Alabama, Kentucky, and Louisiana. His lead became increasingly staggering as he won more closely contested states such as Georgia, North Carolina, Ohio, and especially Florida, a key state that secured his overall victory. After winning California, Clinton gained a short-lived lead with the state’s impressive fifty-five electoral votes. However, Trump quickly regained the lead as news outlets declared his victories in states throughout the Midwest.

As the number of states yet to be declared dwindled down, key states such as Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Nevada, New Hampshire, Michigan and Minnesota were considered “too close to call.”  If Clinton could procure a victory in a combination of these states, she would still maintain a path to 270. Once the final votes were counted, it became clear that Trump would win Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and others, claiming his title as the next President of the United States. His victory speech began at almost three in the morning.

Although Clinton currently leads in the popular vote by about 200,000, Trump clinched his win in the Electoral College, boasting 279 votes to Clinton’s 228. Additionally, the GOP claimed enough seats in the House of Representatives and the Senate to have a majority in both.

Looking ahead, it is unclear how a President Trump will interact with his fellow Republicans in the House and Senate and many Americans feel uneasy about the four years to come. No matter your opinion on the results of this election, we can all take the advice of President Barack Obama, who says that although we all may have “significant differences,” we must remember that “we are Americans first, We’re patriots first. We all want what’s best for our country.”