Trump victory shocks the world ‘This is what happens if you have democracy’
> President-elect vows to unite US after divisive campaign
BERLIN: Republican Donald Trump stunned the world by defeating heavily favoured Hillary Clinton in Tuesday’s presidential election, ending eight years of Democratic rule and sending the US on a new, uncertain path.
A wealthy real-estate developer and former reality TV host, Trump rode a wave of anger towards Washington insiders to win the White House race against Clinton, the Democratic candidate whose gold-plated establishment resume includes stints as a first lady, US senator and secretary of state.
Trump collected enough of the 270 state-by-state electoral votes needed to win a four-year term that starts on Jan 20, taking battleground states where presidential elections are traditionally decided, US television networks projected.
Trump, appearing with his family before cheering supporters in a New York hotel ballroom, said it was time to heal the divisions caused by the campaign and find common ground.
“It is time for us to come together as one united people.”
Trump praised Clinton for her service and said he had received a call from her to congratulate him on the win.
“I will be president for all Americans.”
Victorious in a cliffhanger race that opinion polls had forecast was Clinton’s to win, Trump won avid support among a core base of white non-college educated workers with his promise to be the “greatest jobs president that God ever created”.
In his victory speech, the 70year-old said he had a great economic plan and would double US economic growth and embark on a project of renewal.
Governments from Asia to Europe reacted with stunned disbelief to his victory, while populists hailed the result as a triumph of the people over a failed political establishment.
German defence minister Ursula von der Leyen described the result as a “huge shock” and questioned whether it meant the end of “Pax Americana”, the state of relative peace overseen by Washington that has governed international relations since World War II.
“We’re realising now that we have no idea what this American president will do if the voice of anger enters office,” Norbert Roettgen, head of the German parliament’s foreign affairs committee, told German radio.
French foreign minister JeanMarc Ayrault pledged to work with Trump but said his personality “raised questions” and he admitted to being unsure what a Trump presidency would mean for key foreign policy challenges, from climate change and the West’s nuclear deal with Iran to the war in Syria.
“Looks like this will be the year of the double disaster of the West,” former Swedish foreign minister Carl Bildt said on Twitter, pointing to UK’s vote in June to leave the European Union. “Fasten seat belts,” he said. Meanwhile, right-wing populists from Australia to France cheered the result as a body blow for the political establishment.
“Their world is falling apart. Ours is being built,” Florian Philippot, a senior figure in France’s National Front, tweeted.
Jean-Marie Le Pen, founder of the front, said: “Today the US, tomorrow France!” – Reuters BEIJING: Chinese state media says that Donald Trump as US president is what happens if people have democracies.
The state-run Xinhua news agency said the election of the controversial tycoon just shows how America’s democracy brings about crisis, in contrast to the stability of China’s authoritarian rule.
The campaign – and Donald Trump’s ascension to the highest office in the world – shows how “the majority of Americans are rebelling against the US political class and financial elites”, the paper wrote.
The official Communist Party newspaper People’s Daily said in a commentary that the presidential election reveals an “ill democracy”.
China’s state media and government-backed commentators have actually supported Trump throughout the election campaign.
Like Russia, China is seen as favouring Trump because he appears less willing to confront China’s newly robust foreign policy, particularly in the South China Sea.
Clinton, by contrast, is disliked in Beijing for having steered the US “pivot” to Asia aimed at strengthening US engagement with the region, particularly in the military sphere.
Writing in the Global Times newspaper, scholar Mei Xinyu said: “It would make it easier for China to cope if Trump is elected.
“This is because under the policy line advocated by (Barack) Obama and Clinton, the political and military friction between China and the US will be more frequent.”
On Tuesday, the Chinese state broadcaster CCTV ran man-on-thestreet interviews with unidentified American voters in which they expressed disgust with the system and dissatisfaction with both candidates. – The Independent
A man moves a cut-out of Clinton after an Election Watch event hosted by the US embassy at a Seoul hotel.
People sing as they watch elections returns at Clinton's election night event at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Centre in New York yesterday.
A Clinton supporter (left) weeps at Jacob K. Javits Convention Centre in New York while a Trump supporter wipes tears of joy at a hotel in Phoenix, Arizona yesterday.
Trump supporters reacts to early results during election night at the New York Hilton Midtown.