Donald John Trump is now the 45th President of the United States after narrowly defeating Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election.
It was a hard-earned victory for Trump in what was one of the most polarizing elections in US history. Most predictions leading up to the election had Clinton winning and she vastly outspent her opponent, but Trump pulled off the surprise victory with a strong turnout.
Trump clinched 270 electoral college votes with crucial batteground victories in Pennsylvania, Florida, and Ohio. Clinton failed to sufficiently rally key states. Independent Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Jill Stein split some of the undecided vote.
Clinton conceded to Trump in a phone call early Wednesday morning, Trump said after he took the stage at the Hilton Hotel in midtown Manhattan.
President-elect Trump tells supporters he congratulated rival Clinton on a race well-run. #Election2016https://t.co/pvAYeWFvStpic.twitter.com/QZQsIZyM4h— AP Politics (@AP_Politics) November 9, 2016
“It’s time for us to come together as one united people,” Trump said. “I pledge to every citizen of our land that I will be president for all Americans. And this is so important to me. For those who have chosen not to support me in the past …I’m reaching out to you for your guidance and your help so that we can work together to … unity our great country.”
Trump touched on several points of his plans for the US, including improving the crumbling infrastructure of the country, taking better care of veterans, and economic growth.
“We have a great economic plan,” Trump said. “We will double our growth and have the strongest economy anywhere in the world.”
“At the same time, we will get along with all other nations willing to get along with us.”
“No dream is too big, no challenge is too great," Trump said. "Nothing we want for our future is beyond our reach. America will no longer settle for anything less than the best.”
“While we will always put America’s interests first, we will deal fairly with everyone. All people and all nations. We will seek common ground,” he said. "While the campaign is over, our work on this movement is just beginning...We're going to get to work immediately for the American people."
Celebrity businessman and political novice Donald Trump is elected America's 45th president Tuesday. https://t.co/OqM7FEtZ9apic.twitter.com/fjfEHnvqFO— AP Politics (@AP_Politics) November 9, 2016
Vice President-elect Mike Pence also made remarks.
"This is a historic night," he said. "The American people have spoke and the American people have elected their new champion.
America has elected a new president and it’s almost hard for me to express the honor that I and my family feel that I’ll have the privilege to serve as your Vice President of America.”
While Clinton would have been the first female president, Trump is groundbreaking in his own way. He is the first president with no previous political or public experience. He has never held office or served the country in a public role before assuming the highest position in the US. Far from being a detriment to Trump, it was precisely this outsider status that propelled him to such popularity.
Trump brings a different type of experience to the White House that he thinks will help break up the gridlock of Washington. As the former head of the profitable Trump Organization, Trump is familiar with the inner workings of the economy from a business perspective. Through shrewd maneuvering of IRS tax laws, he amassed a fortune in the private sector and he vows to carry this financial know-how into government.
Trump will have broad capacity to enact his agenda as Republicans control both the Senate and the House of Representatives. His Vice President Mike Pence is expected to play a big role in the administration.
BREAKING: House Speaker Paul Ryan calls Trump victory 'a repudiation of the status quo of failed liberal progressive policies'— The Associated Press (@AP) November 9, 2016
Now that Trump is president, here’s what Global Citizens can expect on a range of issues.
When Trump first announced his bid for president, he said that he would build a wall along the Mexican border to keep out migrants and refugees and deport all undocumented living in the US, approximately 11 million people. This would cost an estimated $285 billion and would have many social and cultural consequences.
Trump also supports greater restrictions on Muslim immigrants arriving from countries with suspected terrorist links, a broad designation that could include any number of countries. He initially suggested he’d ban all Muslim visitors to the US, but then softened that stance to a more intense screening process.
Enacting both policies — excluding Muslims and deporting undocumented immigrants — seems unlikely, but he may still pursue them.
Aside from this, the US’s immigration system is likely to remain in its current dysfunctional state. Comprehensive immigration reform, something that used to have bipartisan support, is unlikely under a Trump administration.
Trump believes that trade is hurting the US and wants to renegotiate many core tenets of international trade.
“If I can't make a great deal, then we're going to terminate NAFTA and create new deals,” he said in the final debate. “We'll have trade, but we'll terminate it, we'll make a great trade deal. And if we can't, we're going to go a separate way because it has been a disaster."
Economists across the political spectrum think that backing away from international trade and imposing tariffs on countries such as China would have negative effects on the US economy.
Trump’s views on the federal minimum wage have evolved considerably since he announced his candidacy. His latest position is that he would raise the country-wide minimum wage to $10 an hour, up from $7.25.
Trump also plans to slash taxes on the wealthy and businesses, which he says will be beneficial to the economy because it could unleash investment and a hiring spree.
“We're going to cut taxes massively. We'll cut business taxes massively. They're going to start hiring people,” he said in the final debate.“We're going to bring the $2.5 trillion that's offshore back into the country. We're going to start the engine rolling again because right now our country is dying at 1% GDP.”
Trump wants to repeal Obamacare and replace it with an alternative that, he says, will expand access and reduce costs for people. Obamacare has allowed millions of people living in poverty to access quality, affordable health care for the first time in their lives. But it has also raised costs for millions of better-off Americans because of several flaws that were drilled into the bill before it was passed and by the Supreme Court.
In the second presidential debate, Trump had this to say:
“We have to repeal [Obamacare], and replace it with something absolutely much less expensive. And something that works. Where your plan can actually be tailored. We have to get rid of the lines around the state, artificial lines. Where we stop insurance companies from coming in and competing because they wanted President Obama and whoever was working on it. They want to leave those lines because that gives the insurance companies, essentially, monopolies. We want competition.”
In the US today, women’s rights advocates generally focus on equal pay, eliminating institutional sexism, providing access to reproductive health care, and providing economic support to new mothers.
On all of these issues, Trump has presented regressive views. His daughter, Ivanka Trump, however, is pushing her father to embrace measures such as universal maternity leave and expanded affordable child care.
Trump wants to get rid of the Environmental Protection Agency, withdraw the USfrom the Paris Climate Agreement, and invest in coal energy. All of these measures make it much harder for the world to deal with climate change and protect the environment.
Under President Barack Obama, the Justice Department initiated reforms at dozens of police departments around the country. These gains are likely to be slowed and potentially even reversed under Trump, depending on who he appoints to attorney general and the supreme court.
The movement to dismantle the private prison system, which is widely seen as a fundamentally corrupt model, could also be halted under Trump.
Donald Trump has insisted throughout the presidential campaign that the US foots too much of the international bill for aid and defense. It is expected that he will cut budgets relating to foreign aid and defense, especially regarding countries that contain elements hostile to the US.