Donald Trump – Don of a New Era
What do Andrew Jackson (1824), Samuel Tilden (1876), Grover Cleveland (1888), Al Gore (2000) and Hillary Clinton (2016) have in common? Well, they have all been in the unenviable position of winning the popular American vote and still losing the American Presidential elections through Electoral College votes. Defying all odds and the forecast of pundits, Donald Trump has turned the tables on prophets of doom and has been elected as the 45th President of the United States.
An analysis of Electoral College votes – 290 – 228 in favour of Trump – reveals a few startling facts. Not only has he managed to hold on to the Republican strongholds and states that Mitt Romney won in 2012, he has managed to add Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan to his kitty. The Democrats had had it tough from the early stages of counting when a stunning upset saw Florida going the Trump way. Early voting here had indicated a strong Latino wave in the urban areas that was expected to be in favour of Hillary. But a late surge by white retirees and blue collared workers in favour of Trump saw him through.
What was it that went horribly wrong for Clinton who was at one stage making it a one horse race in her favour? Put simply, her campaign managers failed to gauge the pulse of the people. They attacked Donald Trump the individual for his often crass comments, his often funny and hilarious propositions and his often outrageous analysis of world affairs. What they failed to see was that there was an underlying discontent among the American populace regarding events in their everyday life and Trump was promising to address these issues.
Take the case of Islamic fundamental radicalism. In recent past, America has been buffeted by waves of terror attacks, not only within the country but without too. Families have lost their dear and loved ones to the scourge of terrorism. When Trump said that he would bar Muslims from entering the country, the liberals and the appeasers were shocked. How could this be possible in a global economy? But layers beneath the veneer of American ethos, there had been discontent on this very issue with the common man on the street wanting strong action on this score. Trump had his ear to the ground and cashed in when the time came.
Same was the case with immigration and loss of American jobs to an influx of skilled labour from abroad. Trump addressed this issue with a promise of stopping outsourcing of American jobs. And that his thought had appealed to the common man was there for all to see when the results were declared.
For the die-hard pessimists, Donald Trump the presidential candidate has already proved that he is different from Donald Trump the President elect. In his acceptance speech he has talked about uniting a deeply divided and dissatisfied America and of rejuvenating the nation as a whole.
His clarion call of “Let’s Make America Great Again” has truly paid off wonderfully.