In what some believe to be an unceremonious fashion, Republican candidate Donald Trump won the 2016 Election for Presidency of the United States on Nov. 8.
Trump secured his place in the Oval Office with 51 more electoral votes than Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton. Although Clinton won the popular vote by 0.01 percent, Trump managed to win key swing states including Michigan, Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania (which no republican nominee has secured since 1988), North Carolina, Iowa and Wisconsin.
Across the state of Mississippi, Trump received approximately 215,532 more votes than the former Secretary of State. In Forest County, 55.5 percent voted Trump and 41.3 percent voted Clinton; in Lamar County, Trump received 76.5 percent – 18,493 votes – with Clinton at 5,044 votes, according to the L.A. Times.
President of College Republicans Sawyer Walters said he thought the race was a huge upset and that Clinton was projected to win in most polls.
“In the beginning of the night, it had her ahead a little bit,” Walters said. “Trump started pulling ahead and was able to maintain his lead over Hillary. Really after Pennsylvania, you kind of understood that was it, it was the final piece – she would have had to sweep every other state. In each state, the conservative votes were coming out ahead of the polls, and after Pennsylvania it really struck hold that we just did it. We were able to sweep not only the presidential election but were also able to sweep the Senate and the House as well.”
President of the College Democrats Ki-Jana Collins said he was shocked with the election results.
“I was shocked not because the polls had projected Hillary winning,” Collins said. “All the major states were red – states that were once blue – are red now. It just makes you wonder what happened, what went wrong with the polling. Did people lie when they said they were supporting her? Were people saying that they were supporting her, were there people on the outside supporting her but secretly supporting Trump? So, mainly, I’m just shocked.”
Collins said he was sick to his stomach.
“It’s not because of Trump as a person – even if you look past all of the things he has said,” Collins said. “Never have we had a candidate who had no political experience, not even municipal political experience – nothing. It was a shock factor that we picked someone over someone who has seen every aspect of this job, every aspect of running a country or dealing with foreign leaders. [We picked] someone who has a mass wealth of reality TV and business experience. What’s going to happen now? What are we saying to other countries?”
Walters said he was satisfied with the result and that the Republicans going out to vote will help pass bills in the next four years.
“I think at Southern Miss, you’re going to see a different mindset,” Walters said. “Recently we’ve had a Republican House and Senate but a Democratic president. Here at Southern Miss, you’re going to see a lot more of a conservative mindset because all of the legislation that’s going to be passed will tend to be more conservative. I think having all those laws passed will help other people come to the idea that Republicans aren’t bad.”
Social media’s role in this election will not be discounted as Trump has received more than $1.8 billion in free advertising from media outlets. Trump’s Twitter account became a key tool in his dramaturgical campaign. Following the results, Trump took to Twitter to proclaim satisfaction for the turnover, writing, ”Such a beautiful and important evening! The forgotten man and woman will never be forgotten again. We will all come together as never before”
Although Trump feels triumphant, many social media users feel particularly discouraged by his win. Many have posted countdown clocks to their Facebook walls for when Trump will leave office, pictures of despondent Clinton supporters and statuses blaming third-party voters for the upset.
Inauguration of the 45th president is set for Jan. 20; the first act in the business man’s presidential play will be staged for a global audience.