We had an Election – What Happened?

The 2016 election in the United States is over. Perhaps what may be more important, are your local election results. If you don’t know what happened locally, I suggest you find out before you read this blog. Property and sales taxes, school and city leadership, judges & sheriffs may have changed. The local elections are going to affect you more than this national election.

OK, that’s not why you’re here. You’re probably finding this Presidential election a little hard to believe. Confused? Angry? Frustrated? Happy? Sad? Joyful? Well you’ve come to the right place. I summarize why this election ended up this way.

Who are the two major candidates?

donald_trump_head

Donald Trump

  • Chairman and president, The Trump Organization
  • Host, The Apprentice, The Celebrity Apprentice
  • Entrepreneur Initiative – University name dropped per New York Education Department demand
  • Owns hotels, casinos, entertainment resorts
  • Political experience – considered running for president in 1987, 2000, 2008, & 2012 (never ran or held public office)
  • Education: High school: New York Military Academy, class of 1964
  • Fordham University: 1964–1966 dropped out – resumed studies ~
  • University of Pennsylvania: The Wharton School 1968 graduate
hillary_clinton_head

Hillary Clinton

  • Secretary of state, 2009–13
  • Senator from New York 2001-2009
  • First lady of United States
  • Education: BA, Wellesley College, 1969
  • JD, Yale Law School, 1973. Postgraduate study at the Yale Child Study Center

 


Trump
290 Electoral Votes
61,201,031 – 47.0% of the total vote

Clinton
232 Electoral Votes
62,523,126 – 48.0% of the total vote

You’ve heard many explanations as to why Donald Trump won over Hillary Clinton. Most of them are people trying to find explanations for their predisposed choice. Online newspapers, various well known news organizations tried to avoid covering much of the negative publicity about Hillary Clinton.

She lost to Barrack Obama, but after he had his eight year tenure, many Democrats felt it was her time. They also wanted to set another precedent, getting the first female in the Whitehouse. I call it the beginning of the “selfie vote”.

The strategy by many in the media was to help Donald Trump become the winner of the Republican primary paired against Hillary Clinton. He wouldn’t be too harshly criticized or scrutinized unless and until he became the nominee. It was to be a slam dunk for her. In addition to the generally positive spin, the polls reinforced the idea of how far ahead she was of Trump, many of them decided to shame those in the electorate who might consider voting for him.

Here’s a summary of what the media and critics were saying about Trump

  • He’s a racist ~ There are not be enough white men in America to elect Trump.
  • Trump voters are uneducated ~ They aren’t college educated & they don’t believe government should try to control the climate
  • Ignorant Bible thumpers ~ They see him as someone chosen by God
  • He hates women ~ Anyone that votes for Trump is a misogynist
  • They don’t think they have a voice ~ Waging a war against outsiders

So what happened? Maybe, just maybe, the media and many Democrats got it wrong. The problem with the polls became obvious after he won. The overtly critical news media hurt their own cause. The weakness with Hillary Clinton as a candidate was superseded by the choice many wanted to claim was historical.

There have been far too many investigations into both her and her husband. The saying, where there’s smoke, there’s fire. Well there’s so much smoke surrounding her, along with the most obvious public lies she’s made, that many voters believed there was a forest fire in her life.

Her candidacy, even though it would be a first for women, was a lot like business as usual. She had courted and was paid by many large corporations. This placed her in the common group of backroom wheeler dealers who have managed to help destroy the credibility of those in office. She already had credibility problems, this magnified it. Whenever under pressure, she would obfuscate or lie, only to be found out and have to backtrack.

Donald Trump had his own problems with his Trump University, his comments on women, and allusions to having a large male organ, in what has to be one of the most adolescent debate points in political theater. Nonetheless, he was seen as an outsider. Someone who would shake things up in Washington. The same tactic of Hope & Change by Barack Obama, once again reimagined by someone who knew how to sell himself to the public.

Trump supporters viewed their man as someone who gets things done, and willing to ‘break a few eggs to make an omelette’. They saw him as a person they could identify with, including personal faults, which many people recognized in themselves.

The Cult of Hillary Clinton, lead by a coalition of social justice activists, celebrities, and well monied financiers, was above criticism, more of an idea, which supports the notion, we must elect someone who mouths the words we want to hear, such as empowerment, fairness, equality, breaking glass ceilings.

I believe  Hillary Clinton fell to the damages of a thousand cuts. The artificial support by many in the media seemed to aide Donald Trump, more than harm him. His messages were always simple, to the point, and he didn’t dodge the criticism levied about his checkered past. She was defended and supported by people yelling, anyone supporting Trump was a racist and or a misogynist, ignoring the voter mix required for Barack Obama to have won in the past two elections

In the end, many voters thought he was less of a risk to the office, even with all of his baggage. Someone who voiced their concerns over jobs, spending, illegal immigration & potential increase of terrorism through the intake of middle east refugees. Clinton continued the idea of business as usual with expanded government programs & the associated spending, which has gotten us into unprecedented levels of national debt.

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