The race is over, the great duel of personalities and ideas which makes up a race for the United States Presidency has ended. Donald J. Trump has been elected President. Hillary Clinton has conceded and President Obama has promised to facilitate the transfer of power. Something calamitous could happen but we can expect that it will not and we will see a new administration in real distinction to the old one. There was a vigorous campaign and the electorate spoke within the constitutional mandate. I did not vote for either one of them but I did vote. I am happier that Trump won than I would have been with Hillary’s victory. But over all my election cycle involved few victories.
Trumps new era comes on the heels of the extremely contentious race. It comes on the heels of a Presidency that was distinguished by a confrontational and intransigent style of executive power. Even now he has not yet taken office peacefully, But the tone has been set. We will see if all the acrimony of recent months will yiled to the machinery of constitutional transition.
Beside the victory of Trump and other candidates three important things happened yesterday: First, there was a high turnout election in some places that have not seen such a high turnout in a long time. Second, there was a realigning election that allowed the working class people of America to stand out and be heard. Third, White people in America revealed their potential power as a voting bloc. A Nick Anderson Cartoon posted all around Facebook spoke to the importance of turnout.
But there was more going on than simply getting voters to the polls to express their feelings and concerns. America is seeking a new way forward. There are many who are deeply disappointed today and some who are elated but all have been through a great deal. I hope that this is the start of a great and worthy time. For America, it may well be, perhaps not so much for me. I did not vote for Trump myself. But I am a White, rural American who has worked hard and has very little. I could hear the echoes of my own voice in his movement. I voted early but I went to what would have been my polling place on Election Day and took some pictures.
There was a lot on the ballot yesterday. Even within the big story of Trump’s election there were many stories that made up the whole. The night was a late one for me and although I voted for Chris Keniston of the Veterans party — I was relieved. Keniston got 1,880 votes in Louisiana. Trump got 1,178,004 vote and won the sate’s electoral votes. In addition all of the key speeches by Trump, Clinton and Obama have seemed reassuring to me. I had read through my Huffington Post and Politico free subscriptions and my paid Washington Post and Daily Advertiser subscriptions and visited Real Clear Politics. I had communicated with a huge number of people about the political situation — and although I was not sure who was going to win as a result of my own research I did tend to believe the predictions that Hillary would win. I also found some other interesting things in the polling data before the election, what is below is among what I got from my Politico emails.:
Despite pre-election polls showing neither candidate poised to win a majority of the vote on Tuesday, a 55-percent majority thinks the winner of the election “has a mandate to take the country towards the vision they spoke about during the campaign,” while 23 percent don’t think the winner will have a mandate. Another 22 percent aren’t sure.
The Morning Consult/POLITICO Exit Poll was conducted October 18 – November 8, 2016 among 9,704 early/Election Day Voters. The interviews were conducted online and the data were weighted to approximate a target sample of registered voters based on age, race/ethnicity, gender, educational attainment. The results have a margin of error of +/- 1 percent. Morning Consult is a nonpartisan media and technology company that provides data-driven research and insights on politics, policy and business strategy.
Trump won a compelling mandate to seek immigration reform, to enhance our position in world trade, to seek to renew the economy in blighted America and to abolish the current version of political correctness. What else he won a mandate to do is not all that clear. We also seem almost certain to make it out of the Obama administration without a violent revolution, a civil war or the assassination of a President or Presidential candidate. That is for me a real achievement we can take some pride in. Bad times may be ahead as may critical posts in this blog but there is a lot to rejoice in today as well.
There were some clues that this might happen that I posted on Facebook but not here: Including a reference to a fairly late Post-ABC Tracking Poll showing Trump at 46%, Clinton 45%, as Democratic enthusiasm dipped in the final month of the race. But the Republicans have also kept control of the US Senate, the US House of Representatives and majority of the branches in the States. Whether Trump is ready to lead a powerful party or not — he is in a position to do so. I posted one joke about the candidates (authored by me) during the whole campaign season that was in the spirit of the cheap and derisive tone of the campaign — this is it:
Secretary Clinton: “I have always believed that if a man will not take off his pants suddenly and in odd situations he cannot be trusted. ”
Trump: “That is a horrible idea you got from the Muslim Mexican Media feminist elite you sold your soul to…”
As for my day after point of view: What was on the Louisiana ballots can be accessed here. I voted for Charles Boustany for Senate who came in third. Kennedy and Campbell will be in the runoff. I voted for Marilyn Castle for Supreme Court who lost to Jimmy Genovese in a field of two. I voted for Scott Angelle who is leading in a race for the Third Congressional District. I voted for Mike Francis who won a seat on the Public Service Commission outright in a filed of three decent candidates. So one candidate I voted for was a vote I knew could not win, two lost and one won outright and one made the runoff.
I also voted on Constitutional Amendments. I voted to improve the Registrar of Voters standards and that passed — I won. I voted to give Universities more fiscal autonomy that failed — I lost. I voted against eliminating the deductability of Federal Income tax
on state taxes the, change failed — I won. I voted for more tax protection for the surviving spouses of LEOs and troops killed on active duty and that passed — I won. I voted to reform the rainy day fund, the change passed — I won. I voted for a deficit correction plan, the change failed — I lost.
So I do not have a host of victories to celebrate but I do have hope for a Trump Presidency to make things better. I have concerns about China and Mexico. I have concerns about sexual politics. I have concerns about the nature of our system But I am happier with Trump than I would have been with Hillary.