Donald Trump secures unexpected presidential victory

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Phillip Downey/File

Marking the official end to a turbulent and unprecedented election cycle, Donald Trump was elected president Tuesday night by 58 electoral votes, according to the Associated Press.

Trump received 47.9 percent of the popular vote as of 12:20 a.m., clinching critical states such as Pennsylvania and Wisconsin to come out ahead of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, the first woman in American history to be the nominee of a major political party.

“To all Republicans and Democrats and Independents across this nation, I say that it is time for us to come together as one united people,” Trump said in a speech given at his campaign headquarters after Clinton’s concession.

As news of Trump’s likely victory spread, the U.S. stock market fell 4 percent.

The atmosphere on Sproul Plaza, where more than 1,000 community members gathered to watch live election results, evolved from confusion to stun to frustration to anger. The win came as a shock to many, as most reputable polling sources — including FiveThirtyEight, the Associated Press and the New York Times — had predicted a landslide Democratic win, some giving Clinton a nearly 90 percent chance of winning.

This discrepancy between polls and election results is not unprecedented, particularly when a white candidate runs against an underrepresented minority candidate, in this case a woman. The tendency for voters to claim they’re voting for the minority candidate but actually vote for the other, known as the Bradley effect, is well-documented in political theory.

Trump’s unconventional style as a candidate and unique background attracted many of his voters, who tended to rally behind his propensity to speak his mind. While Clinton had earned the support of many female, Black and Latino voters, Trump was especially strong in rural parts of the country, especially among white noncollege-educated men.

With his win, Trump, who has never before held elected office, narrowly defeated a candidate whose most prominent roles are secretary of state, New York senator and first lady to Bill Clinton during his presidential terms from 1993 to 2001.

“If Trump can win despite (Clinton’s campaigning), this shows that the American willpower is still alive and the country that I believe in, the country that I love, still has a voice,” said UC Berkeley freshman and Berkeley College Republicans member Chase Aplin.

As president, Trump said, he will advocate strong immigration reform on several fronts, including increased screening of Muslim immigrants and a proposed wall along the southern U.S. border. He said he would also lower the business tax rate to 15 percent, reduce the country’s trade deficit and give tax cuts to the wealthy. He will come into office with Indiana Gov. Mike Pence as his vice president.

Since Trump officially announced his intention to run for president on the Republican ticket, he has been embroiled in a string of controversies, including a leaked tape in which he can be heard describing instances of sexual assault. He has also refused to release his tax returns and alleged that the elections were rigged in Clinton’s favor on multiple occasions.

Throughout the race, Trump struggled to garner and maintain support from many prominent members of his party, including former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, as well as Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, who considered pulling his support for Trump after the tape’s leak.

Despite inconsistent support, Trump maintained a loyal following among the electorate, including many members of the Berkeley College Republicans. Multiple BCR members called the win a “pleasant surprise.”

Clinton lost a hard-fought election in her second consecutive bid for the presidency. Her campaign was rocked by skepticism of her role in the 2012 Benghazi attack, an FBI investigation into her private emails and a previously unforeseen challenge from Democratic Sen. Bernie Sanders, who defeated Clinton in multiple primary elections.

“I don’t think (Clinton) would represent us well on a global scale, as she already hasn’t,” Aplin said. “I think she was very bad as secretary of state. I think Mr. Trump is a qualified businessman. He’s done quite well for himself in his life, and I think he could transfer those skills to the presidency.”

The shock and disappointment from the Clinton camp in Berkeley were evident Tuesday night. About 78 percent of the vote in Alameda County was cast in favor of Clinton.

“We need to get organized, I feel, as a nation. We cannot have a Trump presidency,” said Berkeley resident Carol Coyote. “I mean, this is frightening. So we’re taking names. We’re going to have a meeting … and try to figure out where to go from here. We really need to kick ass now. We can’t wait.”

While some sent out a call to action, others reflected on the social implications of the outcome.

“It was a wonderful moment of hope to think that we had the opportunity to elect our first female president,” said District 3 City Council candidate Deborah Matthews. “We’re just reminded how difficult our opportunities are for women in business and in leadership. Keep moving forward, and do not falter.”

In his campaign victory speech, Trump thanked Clinton for her achievements as a political leader and remained hopeful the country would move forward from the evident partisan divide that permeated the 2016 elections cycle.

“Ours was not a campaign but rather an incredible and great movement,” Trump said in his speech.

Clinton had yet to deliver a concession speech but had called Trump to concede the election as of press time.

Trump will be sworn into office Jan. 20.

Contact the Daily Cal news desk at [email protected].

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  • ShadrachSmith

    The funny part. Hillary had Podesta tell all her people to go home because nothing was going to happen till morning while she was calling Trump to concede. Her last act was to lie to her people. Fitting :-)

    • lspanker

      The so-called “strong woman” was revealed to be nothing but a physical and moral coward, as well as completely corrupt. She made Richard Nixon look honest in comparison.

      • Mike November

        Very well said! Richard Nixon was an awesome president!

  • MikeD

    The candidate to whiten American. Good luck, aint gonna work. America is in the oven and the temperature is 400 degrees and getting darker. While Trump is FN up America, I hope someone looks into The RNC and how they rigged the election via Rudy Giuliani, the FBI and Wikileaks.

    • lspanker

      Yeah, right, whatever. Ever consider that the reason you lost is because your candidate sucked?

      • MikeD

        She did suck. I didn’t state that she didn’t. Trump sucks as well. I just think he is racist, a womanizer, dangerous to America and had emense help from the FBI and Wikileaks. Would have been nice to see Trump’s emails. We will find out within a year how bad he is for everyone. What fascinates me is, his base of country and uneducated white folks will not see jobs pour in as Trump promises. He will help the rich-period. This is why this election was White America versus colored America. Ultimately all of America will lose over the next 4 years.

        • lspanker

          She did suck. I didn’t state that she didn’t. Trump sucks as well. I just think he is racist

          Based on what? A media that lies about “racism” every time there’s a shooting, or when someone of color gets criticized?

          • MikeD

            Based on Trump saying many of the Mexican immigrants are rapist and murderers. Based on Trump stating that an Indiana judge could not be fair and balanced when dealing with the lawsuits against Trump University because he’s a Mexican! There’s more. Look it up. It’s clear to all the educated people. There has never been a president due in court for fraud before he takes office. And its a large multi-state case. I think America can do better. But I will not entertain ridiculous chit chat from a Daily Cal troll. Not happening. My point has been made. The intelligent people understand, the dummies don’t. Period

          • lspanker

            Based on Trump saying many of the Mexican immigrants are rapist and murderers.

            Note that he didn’t say “most” or “all” – he said “many”, and he happens to be correct.]

            But I will not entertain ridiculous chit chat from a Daily Cal troll.

            Wonderful, does that mean we don’t have to suffer through reading your hysterical drivel here anymore?

        • Mike November

          Please stop your racist post. Your comment about “uneducated white folks…” is outrageous, hateful and mean spirited. What kind of racist garbage are they feeding people at Cal? Also, the word “colored” hasn’t been used since the 1960’s.

    • Mike November

      The primaries were rigged against Bernie Sanders. The election was not rigged. America did not want a war mongering, hateful feminist ruining the country. The American people have spoken!

  • 1776

    Sheltered West/East coasters not realizing what life in the rust belt is like. Losing their manufacturing job, home, car, and family. What has Obama done for people living in Michigan and Ohio? Obamacare? Great they have insurance but with deductibles so high they can’t even use it. Anyone surprised with the results is out of touch with middle America.

    • lspanker

      The problem is that these childish so-called “progressives” have been coddled and pandered to way too long. They think that issues such as gay marriage, transgender bathroom rights, and legalization of pot are far more important than the economy, crime, or protecting our own borders. Again, I didn’t vote for Trump and I have plenty of disagreements with the man himself, however, he was at least willing to bring up issues the both the Democrats and RINO Republicans refused to deal with, and for that reason, the voters decided he couldn’t be any worse than the self-anointed empress who has become one of the most polarizing and divisive figures in recent political history, even more so than Obama or Reagan…

  • Kurt VanderKoi

    “Donald Trump secures unexpected presidential victory” was only a surprise if you read, watched, or listened to leftist national media. I was in the east recently and drove from Northern Florida to Northern New York State and saw plenty of Trump/ Pence posters. Local media was nothing like the leftist national media.

    • Mike November

      Very well said. The Gay Area media was completely biased.

  • lspanker

    Donald Trump secures unexpected presidential victory

    Trump’s victory was only “unexpected” if you like in a sheltered little bubble like most of the faculty and students at Cal, and/or live in the city of Berkeley. With the singular exception of George Bush Sr, following Reagan’s two terms in 1988, no political party has been elected for 3 consecutive terms since the end of WWII. Obama’s presidency was hardly any great success, unless you consider record national debts, unemployment and poverty, and a resurgence in terrorism and racial tensions to be successful. In addition, the Democrats chose a candidate who is viewed as cold, autocratic and manipulating,one who is strongly disliked personally on both sides of the political spectrum. The American people have decided that we don’t need a Clinton political dynasty any more than we needed a Bush or Kennedy dynasty -good for them.

    “It was a wonderful moment of hope to think that we had the opportunity to elect our first female president,”

    Once again, the patronizing tokenism of the left for all to see. It doesn’t matter whether the candidate is the best one for the job, as long as we make sure we have a token black/woman/LGBT/disabled/whatever so we can mark that one off the Diversity Checklist.

    • Mike November

      Very well said.