He shocked the world. From real estate mogul to reality TV star to the Oval Office, Trump will become America’s 45th president. He defied polls and prognosticators, energizing a base of white voters hungry for change after eight years of Democratic rule. Hillary Clinton called to concede after 2:30 a.m. EST. In his victory speech, Trump said he’ll work to heal a harshly divided country and “seek common ground, not hostility” with the world. Meanwhile, detractors wonder about his promises to ban Muslims, build a wall, repeal Obamacare and put Clinton in jail.
The Presidential Daily Brief
They’re taking it to the streets. Tens of thousands demonstrated against Donald Trump’s election in cities and college towns from coast to coast yesterday, despite Hillary Clinton’s assertion that he should get a “chance to lead.” Protesters at Trump’s Chicago hotel chanted “No Trump! No KKK! No racist USA!” and demonstrators swarmed outside Manhattan’s Trump Tower, while L.A. activists burned the president-elect in effigy. Many protesters said they were fearful that President Trump would trample on civil rights and, given his emphasis on tough immigration policies, deport them.
There’s no ambiguity here. “We must accept this result,” Hillary Clinton declared in her belated concession speech. Looking grim but determined, the defeated Democratic candidate spoke about the need to defend equality and non-discrimination, emphasizing that “our nation is more deeply divided than we thought.” President Obama echoed her sentiments in a later statement, but concluded that “we’re all on the same team.” Meanwhile, Paul Ryan gave a press conference confirming his now-dominant party’s commitment to Donald Trump. He said Trump’s win proves the businessman “just earned a mandate”, and nodded to GOP plans to attack a “collapsing” Obamacare.
They held firm. Despite a host of challenges, the Senate and House are set to stay red in 2017, meaning the legislative and executive branches will be controlled by Republicans. But Democrats made some notable gains: California’s Kamala Harris is America’s second-ever Black female senator, Nevada’s Catherine Cortez Masto is its first Latina senator, and Oregon’s Kate Brown is the first openly LGBT governor elected. Even Muslim immigrants, vilified by the president-elect during the campaign, scored a win as Somali-born Ilhan Omar joins Minnesota’s state legislature.
Head for the mattresses. The peso, which has been deeply volatile since the rise of Donald Trump, dived 13 percent to a new record low. Meanwhile, S&P 500 futures are forecasting an immediate 2.7 percent drop when markets open today, after the index briefly hit its “limit down” level — one it can’t fall below until trading resumes. Investors are fleeing for safe havens on indications that, if accurate, could see the biggest one-day drop since the U.K.’s Brexit vote wiped trillions off global markets in June.
They’re not high on life without parole. Voters in Oklahoma opted to enshrine protections for the practice in their state constitution, specifying that executions can’t be deemed cruel and unusual punishment. In Nebraska, 57 percent of voters repealed a 2015 bill abolishing the death penalty. And in California, which has nearly 750 prisoners on death row, voters weighed two measures: one that would accelerate the death penalty process and one that would ban it. Despite low public opinion of state executions, the measure to abolish capital punishment is lagging behind.
Ayotte Loses to Hassan, the Search for Aliens, Buckingham Palace Defends Harry’s Girlfriend, and Donald Trump’s Victory Speech
Know This: GOP Sen. Kelly Ayotte concedes to Maggie Hassan in New Hampshire, the EU is considering freezing ongoing membership talks with Turkey. A $100 million project to find aliens has added Australia’s massive Parkes radio telescope to its arsenal. And Buckingham Palace issued a statement lambasting the press and social media trolls over a wave of “outright racism and sexism” received by Prince Harry’s girlfriend, actress Meghan Markle.
Watch This: Donald Trump, the next president of the United States, pledged in his victory speech to rebuild America’s infrastructure.
Remember This Number: $22 billion. That’s the projected size of the recreational and medicinal marijuana market by 2020 — a threefold growth from this year that could be spurred by California’s legalization of the drug yesterday.
This time people actually mean it. At 11 p.m. EST, Canada’s citizenship and immigration website went down — a fluke many chalked up to Americans researching how to move there. This election drove Americans on both ends of the political spectrum to look north of the border, with Canadian real estate agents reporting a 20 percent spike in inquiries, and dating site MapleMatch.com saying they’ve seen an increase in American traffic. It’ll be a while, though, before it becomes clear how many do end up immigrating.
The road’s been tested. America’s seen wealthy politicians before, but few magnates entering the fray. Previous attempts to marry the two, like Ross Perot’s unsuccessful bids for the top office, hadn’t gone well. But Trump’s scorched-earth path to the presidency may embolden wealthy men — let’s face it, it’ll probably be men — seeking more power or validation. Some may hesitate, of course, worrying about damaging their business brand with a nasty campaign fight, or about a little too much public scrutiny into their private dealings.
They’re just one of many landmarks in jeopardy. A recent study shows the iconic white cliffs along England’s southern coastline are eroding 10 times faster than normal. For 7,000 years, they’ve endured with minimal erosion: Their resilience even featured as a metaphor for Britain standing against the Nazis in Vera Lynn’s World War II hit “White Cliffs of Dover.” But scientists say that bigger waves and rising sea levels brought by climate change are destroying the beaches at alarming rates — and if the beaches go, the cliffs themselves will collapse.
They say history repeats itself. We’ve seen shades of it in this election, but art historians might recognize a resurgence of Dadaism in 2016’s memes, which saw bizarre and nightmarish creativity inspired by the election’s biggest personalities. Intrepid Photoshoppers recast Trump as a racist blob of orange Jell-O, and mocked Jeb Bush’s tweet of a gun, ambiguously captioned “America.” The term “Nasty Woman” became its own micro-economy. And while some of 2016’s memes were scary and grim, their universality could mean a whole new age of political art.
The Bears might be spared. The Wall Street Journal reports that the NCAA will not hammer the Waco, Texas, university for widespread institutional failure in a scandal in which sexual assault reports against team members were ignored by the administration. The football coach and school chancellor have already gone down, but the NCAA reportedly will not replicate the Penn State situation, when it fined the school $60 million and yanked 111 wins from Joe Paterno, though many penalties were later lifted. Baylor’s probe is expected to continue for months.