Challenges ahead of the unexpected Trump victory

Jacob Ballmaier, Staff Writer

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After a drawn-out, 14-month-long race, America chose its next leader on Tuesday Nov 8. Democrat Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by an extremely thin majority, but Republican Donald Trump became President-elect in what seemed to be yet another twist in this complex election cycle.

Polls in the previous weeks had given Clinton sizable leads, and popular statistics site FiveThirtyEight gave Trump just a 28.6 percent chance of winning. However,  the campaign managed to pull it off, and as the world sits back in shock, one thing is on everyone’s minds: What comes next?

Early Wednesday morning, Trump gave his victory speech, in which he called for unity across America. Clinton and President Obama later echoed that same message.

But the responses to the election have been quite chaotic to say the least. Stocks plummeted Wednesday, but eventually bounced back. Thousands gathered in major U.S. cities to protest the newly-elected leader, chanting phrases such as “Not my president,” and “Trump and Pence make no sense.”

In Chicago, protesters marched outside Trump Tower and later blocked traffic along Lake Shore Drive.

“These protests are a short-term reaction,” said AP Government teacher Donald Fulmer. “It’s hard to believe that he came out and asked for unity. After all, a large chunk of this division was caused by him.”

According to Fulmer, Trump’s main problem lies with the United States’ fractured political climate.

The campaigning leading up to this election has been the ugliest in modern politics, and it brought out major skeletons from America’s closet. Rivalries and tensions that have brewed for decades– rural areas versus urban areas, elites versus the working-class, liberals versus conservatives– all spilled forth during the election cycle. Despite Republican control of both houses of Congress, it is clear that Trump will have to overcome the deep divisions that already mark the political landscape.

Many Democrats and Republicans in Congress have agreed to cautious compromise: they say they are willing to work with Trump, as long as he does not pursue the racist, xenophobic, and sexist policies that characterized his campaign over the past few months.

Experts also suggest that Trump’s agenda would expand the national deficit, and that many of his campaign promises are unfeasible. Trump must reach at least a few of his goals or he risks losing the support of his fan base and the “silent majority” that helped elect him.

The presidency is unlike any political office in the country. The figurehead of the nation, the president, makes important decisions that affect not only the United States but the rest of the world. The office’s learning curve is certainly a difficult one. Add in Trump, the only elected president to have no prior political or military experience, and that curve becomes much steeper.

Of course, a good leader requires a good nation. Despite its reservations, the United States must come together for the next four years with optimism, not pessimism. It must play the hand it is dealt, and help Donald Trump fulfill his promise to make America great.

Perhaps Hillary Clinton said it best: “We owe him an open mind and the chance to lead.”

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2 Comments

2 Responses to “Challenges ahead of the unexpected Trump victory”

  1. Anthony Giuffre on November 17th, 2016 9:02 am

    What kind of article is this, completely biased towards the democratic party. I do not think this should be published on the school website, considering the fact that many students have different opinions than other classmates. Stating that the world was in shock due to President-elect Trump’s victory is absurd, the people voted for him, he clearly won the electoral vote, and the people decided they wanted change. I demand this article be taken down, unless another article is published to provide the challenges our country would incur if she were to have won, but that wouldn’t be necessary because she didn’t win. We should have positive thinking and publish positive articles for our new president, thank you.

    [Reply]

    Gregg Long Reply:

    Anthony: This is an editorial expressing one writer’s position. We will not be taking it down.

    If you wish to write a response, or an editorial on the subject from your perspective, you are welcome to do so. Email us or come see me to submit it.

    Thanks for reading,

    gjl

    [Reply]

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Challenges ahead of the unexpected Trump victory