Trump Shames Experts -- Wins Presidency

Thumbnail image for Donald-Trump.jpgIn a victory that stunned nearly everybody but the victor, New York City billionaire real estate developer Donald J. Trump today is the 45th president of the United States. The 70-year-old Trump, a Republican, defeated former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, a Democrat, by racking up an Electoral College vote score of 275 to 218.

He will be sworn in formally on Jan. 20 in Washington.

The Associated Press reported Clinton won the Popular Vote but the final count was still being made at 3:15 a.m. (Eastern Standard Time) today. Only the Electoral Vote counts in selecting a President.

Polls closed in most states Tuesday, Nov. 8, at 7 p.m. but Trump wasn't declared a winner until almost seven hours later, at 2:50 a.m. That is when Bucks County in Pennsylvania completed its voting count that gave Trump 20 Electoral votes from the state as a whole. That assist boosted the developer's score to 275 from 254. He only needed 270 to win.

Clinton phoned Trump to concede the race and compliment him on his victory. Her campaign Chairman, John Podesta, at 2 a.m. today, had urged Clinton supporters to leave the Javits Center and go home to rest. He said he would have "more news" in the morning.  That "news" came sooner than later, in Trump's announced win at 2:45 a.m.

The Clinton camp was so sure of winning, they had arranged for a five-star party and Disney-like fireworks at the Javits Convention Center in New York City to follow what was to have been Hillary's grand victory over Trump.

During the celebration which was quickly canceled, Hillary was somehow supposed to shatter the glass ceiling at the Javits Center. That exercise was supposed to demonstrate how women can successfully compete with men in high corporate and government offices - the glass ceiling being a symbol of corporate structure elitism.

In the final weeks leading to the election, pollsters, professors, journalists and political insiders all had Clinton winning the election in a breeze. The final results shocked even the most experienced White House watcher.

For example, late night show host Charlie Rose, who is also a CBS broadcaster, asked his pool of guests after the Trump win was announced:  "What happened? What's going on? What went wrong?"

Well, Charlie, one major thing that went wrong is that many white suburban women, growing Latino voting segments and invigorated African Americans voted for Trump instead of going all out for Hillary. Clinton had counted on that voting block to be hers, not Trump's.

Clinton was at the top of almost every poll during the last 18 months. It had been almost a foregone conclusion that she would become the first female president since George Washington took office in 1789 as the country's first president.

Another victory peg that Clinton supporters had boasted of in advance was winning key battleground states like Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania. Florida especially was to be Clinton's. It wasn't. Neither was Ohio and Pennsylvania. Ohio's winner for years has always gone on to win the presidency. And that's exactly what happened Tuesday night.

Trump knew that. He also knew Florida could make or break the final Electoral College voting count.  "If we don't win Florida, we are out of it," Trump told supporters in his last round of rallies.

Still another element that greatly helped Trump sideline Clinton was the support he received from rural voters in low-profile areas of a state. Votes from various union groups also boosted Trump's total.

Trump's strongest support, however, came from the male and female non-college blue collar-voting block. These individuals, who didn't have the same formal education as many of Clinton's voters enjoyed, came out, registered and adhered to Trump's urging to vote on time.

Clinton, on the other hand, felt her better-educated, better financially-healed voting block would be enough to give her victory.  She also had counted on nearly all women voters coming to her side, and not Trump's, because of the developer's repeated vulgar campaign trail descriptions of women in general.

That also never happened. Many of these same women, thought outraged by Trump's frequent lewd comments, still cast their vote for him.

Coupled with Trump's victory, the Republican Party also won the Senate and now controls the House of Representatives as well. The Democrats had hoped to capture the Senate which would have given them some leverage against the GOP during Congressional battles. The Democrats were shocked by being shut out.

Financial markets around the world shuddered as Trump's victory was announced. Wall Street itself suffered an 840 point drop by 12:15 a.m. today. Markets and investors do not like unpredictable environments - and Trump is considered unpredictable at this stage of his political career.

Countries around the world were watching the election results as they were being posted minute by minute. Germany, France and South Korea were among the first foreign governments to send Trump cautiously-worded congratulations.

In Germany, for example, Norbert Rottgen, an influential lawmaker with Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats, warned the U.S could lose some of its credibility if Trump's administration became an unpredictable ally.

"We must wait and see how he acts in office.  I think, at this time, he doesn't know yet himself how he will act," Rottgen was reported to have said to a German media group.

And that, precisely, is how many Americans this morning are thinking the same thing.


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