New York: The world may have been anticipating a Madam President, but on Wednesday Republican Donald J. Trump clinched the presidency propelled by male white voters unhappy with the status quo who bought his evocative promise to "Make America Great Again."
"This was a white-lash against a changing country,” said American political activist, CNN commentator, writer and attorney.
"It was a white-lash against a black president in part, and that's the part where the pain comes. And Donald Trump has a responsibility tonight to come out and reassure people that he is going to be the president of all the people who he insulted and offended and brushed aside."
Shortly after Democrat Hillary Clinton conceded the contest to Trump, he got down to the enormous task of trying to heal the rifts that he himself had actively stoked during the election cycle by often indulging in divisive and racist rhetoric.
"Hillary has worked very long and very hard over a long period of time and we owe her a major debt of gratitude to her service for our country," Trump said graciously. "Now it's time for America to bind the bounds of division. We have to get together."
At the end of the day, there are five reasons why Trump has thrashed the most sophisticated election algorithms to turn the election results on their head. Trump's campaign manager Kellyanne Conway tweeted what is now self-explanatory and abundantly clear if you parse the election data.
"Things that were true: undercover Trump vote; @mike_pence for VP; Hillary's floor & ceiling r same; rally crowds matter; we expanded the map," tweeted Kellyanne Conway, who got Trump past his worst campaign PR nightmares.
Things that were true: undercover Trump vote; @mike_pence for VP; Hillary's floor & ceiling r same; rally crowds matter; we expanded the map
— Kellyanne Conway (@KellyannePolls) November 9, 2016
Undercover Trump Vote and White-lash
Earlier the white vote was split between Republicans and Democrats along social issues, but this time whites especially low-income ones living in rural areas and the rust belt have gravitated towards Trump because of emotive immigration and trade issues. They have block voted for Trump because they feel immigrants — from Latinos to Asians — have poured into America and stolen their jobs.
These white voters feel the American government is not working for them and Clinton would have just been a third term of Obama. Trump's slogan "Make America Great Again" is a dog whistle to these lost nation sentiments. We also see a severe anti-establishment white-lash against Washington political elites and the Obama presidency.
In August, Conway, herself a pollster, had pointed out that during drawing room conversations some whites were embarrassed about admitting they were voting for Trump, while he would actually get their vote on election day.
“Donald Trump performs consistently better in online polling where a human being is not talking to another human being about what he or she may do in the election,” argued Conway tellingly. “It’s because it’s become socially desirable, if you’re a college-educated person in the United States of America, to say that you’re against Donald Trump.”
Pence Worked like a Charm
Critical rust belt states broke Trump's way on Tuesday night because he campaigned heavily in them and also reassured conservative white voters by choosing one of their own: Indiana governor Mike Pence as his running mate.
"Mr Trump’s path to the White House will go through the Rust Belt, and Mr. Pence is one of their own. His Midwestern style could help Mr. Trump further his appeal in this area," reported The Washington Times.
Hillary's floor and ceiling are the same
Hillary Clinton has a passionate support base but she also has an army of critics. Her haters chipped away at her support base during this election cycle by exploiting the FBI investigation which has been duly described as an unpleasant "October surprise." The daily Wikileak data dump also tarnished her reputation by creating the impression that she was duplicitous and calculating.
In the biggest surprise, exit polls show that not all Hispanics were put off by Trump's "Bad Hombre" racist digs or wall building talk. Trump had said he would build a wall along America's border with Mexico, stick Mexico with the bill for it and deport some 11 million undocumented migrants.
However Clinton failed to animate her support base of Latinos, African Americans and young people enough to win the presidential race.
"Only 65 percent of Latinos supported Hillary, while 29 percent cast their votes for Trump. In 2012, Obama won 71 percent of the Hispanic vote, while Romney secured 27 percent," reported CNN.
Similarly, President Barack Obama carried a higher percentage of black voters compared to her 88 percent.
Rally Crowds Matter
Trump had great pulling power at his rallies where the crowds turned up to see him despite the fact that he had no rock stars or popular surrogates like First Lady Micelle Obama. In fact, during his rally in New Hampshire he sarcastically pointed out that Clinton had to rely on star power and other bells and whistles to fill her venues.
“Hillary can’t fill a room. Look, look, this is called filling a stadium, and I have no guitar and no piano. Right? I mean she gets Jay Z and Beyonce the other night," said Trump.
First Published On : Nov 9, 2016 18:18 IST