State re­sults re­flect a di­vided na­tion

Trump made gains in the east and north, while Clin­ton banked on Latino vote

Toronto Star - - NEWS - TANYA TA­LAGA FOR­EIGN AF­FAIRS RE­PORTER

The 2016 vote was his­toric on many fronts.

Amer­ica the melt­ing pot stood up for Hil­lary Clin­ton, the first fe­male can­di­date to run for pres­i­dent, but it was not enough to give her what she needed. The coun­try stands di­vided. What­ever gains Clin­ton made thanks to the Latino vote, the women’s vote and with African-Amer­i­can sup­port, Don­ald Trump’s cam­paign, trumped her.

To win, 270 elec­toral votes are needed out of a to­tal of 538 and that num­ber comes from the 435 U.S. Rep­re­sen­ta­tives plus 100 U.S. Sen­a­tors plus 3 elec­tors in the District of Colom­bia.

“It would be sweet, sweet jus­tice if tonight it was the Latino vote that de­feated Don­ald Trump,” said Ana Navarro, a CNN po­lit­i­cal an­a­lyst. Dur­ing the cam­paign, Trump called Mex­i­can im­mi­grants rapists and crim­i­nals. One of his cam­paign prom­ises is to build a gi­ant wall be­tween Mex­ico and Amer­ica.

Latino vot­ers make up12 per cent of all U.S. el­i­gi­ble vot­ers or 27.3 mil­lion peo­ple, ac­cord­ing to the Pew Re­search Cen­ter. That is an in­crease of 4 mil­lion el­i­gi­ble vot­ers from 2012.

All im­por­tant Florida, holder of 29 elec­toral votes and home to a large Latin Amer­i­can pop­u­la­tion, flipflopped its sup­port on Tues­day night but the sun­shine state fi­nally set­tled on Trump. Florida is known as a pur­ple state, his­tor­i­cally flip­ping back be­tween Demo­crat blue and Repub­li­can red. Both cam­paigns know this is a bat­tle­ground state, a must win in or­der to make it to the White House.

The Clin­ton team pushed hard in Florida, push­ing the Oba­mas in the state to whip up the African-Amer­i­can vote, said Carlo Dade, a se­nior fel­low at the Univer­sity of Ottawa’s School of In­ter­na­tional Devel­op­ment. But it was not enough.

“The Latino vote is in an odd place. The Cuban vote is lumped with Lati­nos but they vote dif­fer­ently than Mex­i­can Amer­i­cans, who are the vast ma­jor­ity of ‘Latino’ vot­ers,” said Dade. While younger Cuban Amer­i­cans voted for Obama in 2012, older Cubans tra­di­tion­ally voted Repub­li­can, he said.

For­mer Repub­li­can pres­i­den­tial can­di­date, Marco Ru­bio, won his Florida Se­nate seat.

In Ohio, a rust belt state, there is a well known say­ing, “As Ohio goes, so goes the na­tion.” No Repub­li­can pres­i­den­tial can­di­date has gone to the White House with­out win­ning Ohio. And only two Democrats in the last100 years -- Franklin D. Roo­sevelt in 1944 and John F. Kennedy in 1960 -- won with­out Ohio, notes The Colum­bus Dis­patch.

Both cam­paigns are well aware of the his­toric im­por­tance of Ohio. The Clin­ton cam­paign spent $46 mil­lion (U.S.) on ad­ver­tis­ing in Ohio, ac­cord­ing to CNBC, while the Trump cam­paign spent less than half of that at $19 mil­lion. The econ­omy is an im­por­tant is­sue in Ohio, Trump knew it and promised change and he won the state.

In Michi­gan, it was a nail-biter as Trump con­tin­ued to make gains through­out Tues­day night and Clin­ton was un­der per­form­ing. Clin­ton needed a big turn out from the African-Amer­i­can vote in Detroit.

Clin­ton did win her home state of New York, where both she and Trump voted on Tues­day. Both the Trump and Clin­ton cam­paigns held their end of elec­tion par­ties in Man­hat­tan. And in Illi­nois, the state where Clin­ton was born, she won.

From the start of this lengthy elec­tion, Amer­i­cans were not thrilled with ei­ther can­di­date. Both were polling un­der 50 per cent in pop­u­lar­ity with vot­ers by early Novem­ber.

The first re­sults of the night to be re­ported came from Ken­tucky, that showed to no sur­prise, that Trump would take the 8 elec­toral vote state. Trump cam­paigned hard in sup­port of laid off coal min­ers in the usu­ally Repub­li­can red state. In In­di­ana, a state with 11 elec­toral votes, also came out to vote Trump.

In New Hamp­shire, Clin­ton won the im­por­tant, tiny, Dixville Notch precinct, tak­ing four votes to Don­ald Trump’s 2 votes while Lib­er­tar­ian Gary John­son gained one vote. The last vote was for Repub­li­can Mitt Rom­ney, who lost the 2012 pres­i­den­tial elec­tion to Barack Obama. The precinct, al­ways the first to re­port, has pre­dicted three of the last four pres­i­den­tial elec­tions. In 2016, the state was lean­ing Repub­li­can.

In for­mer Demo­cratic pres­i­den­tial can­di­date Bernie San­ders home state of Ver­mont, Clin­ton hand­ily won.

Ge­or­gia, where more than 60 per cent of the elec­torate is white and 16 elec­toral votes were at stake, Trump held firm. Rom­ney won the state in 2012.

In Vir­ginia, a Demo­cratic strong­hold un­der Obama in 2012 and holder of 13 elec­toral votes, the Clin­ton team was op­ti­mistic but early on, the race was tight. Clin­ton even­tu­ally won there. The state is nor­mally split in who it votes for — the Wash­ing­ton, D.C. sub­urbs are heav­ily demo­cratic but the state be­comes more Repub­li­can the fur­ther south you go.

North Carolina, a clas­sic swing state of 15 elec­toral votes, went back and for­ward on Tues­day be­fore set­tling with Trump. Demo­cratic vi­cepres­i­den­tial can­di­date Tim Kaine, has called it the “check­mate state.” In the last elec­tion, Rom­ney held it but Clin­ton did well in the polls lead­ing up to the elec­tion.

Elec­toral un­rest was pre­dicted even be­fore the polls of­fi­cially closed on Tues­day when a Ne­vada judge re­fused a re­quest from the Trump cam­paign to sep­a­rate and seg­re­gate bal­lots gath­ered from four vot­ing ma­chines that were open early in Clark County. Record num­bers of Latino vot­ers had shown up to vote early. The Trump cam­paign staff ar­gued the polling sta­tions were kept open for an ex­tra two hours and should not have been.

The Ne­vada court chal­lenge may be the first in a long line of “rigged elec­tion” claims by the Trump camp, said Dade.

“If your voter base isn’t grow­ing, you try and lessen the other guys too,” said Dade, who is based in Calgary at the Canada West Foun­da­tion.

TAIMY AL­VAREZ/TNS

Com­pet­ing sup­port­ers of Trump and Clin­ton try to woo vot­ers in Boca Ra­ton, Fla., north of Mi­ami. Florida, a key bat­tle­ground state, was lean­ing to Trump.

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