Throughout much of the campaign I found myself asking time and time again, “Has the media forgotten the core fundamentals of American society of the past 300 years or so?” And each time I concluded that it had. Clearly, the American public hadn’t.
This disconnect of the media was laid bare when Trump, the brash reality show TV star and billionaire, a man who has shown absolute contempt and disdain for most career politicians over the years, and has never shown any interest (at least outwardly) in being “the one”, managed to beat a fearsome, well-funded and ruthless political machine for the top job.
A Clinton presidency, in my view, offered a continuation of Barack Obama’s social policies. It’s interesting that much of the platform owned by the Bernie Sanders campaign during the Democratic Primary race, was then adopted by the Clinton campaign at the Democratic Party Convention. This was done to placate Sanders’ supporters and to secure their support for a presidential nominee they clearly didn’t want. But as it turned out, these policies were rejected by American voters; it was political suicide for Clinton.
Here in Australia, the mainstream media did what it often does when it comes to international affairs – it simply regurgitated the US hype. This resulted in Australians getting a distorted picture of what was happening on the ground. While everyone – including our own politicians – was backing the Clinton campaign, the mood of the US electorate was moving in the opposite direction.
While everyone – including our own politicians – was backing the Clinton campaign, the mood of the US electorate was moving in the opposite direction.
Having studied US politics for a great many years, it’s my view that the Democratic agenda was completely disconnected from the realities of middle America. Secretary Clinton and her policy and campaign advisers must have been asleep at the wheel if they believed that the voting public would vote for higher taxes and more of the same Obama economics. But it didn’t start and end there.
Many of the Americans I know are absolutely mortified at the growth of the national debt under Obama. And they are equally mortified at a foreign policy stance that has increasingly lost its way. This has seen an increase rather than a decrease in terrorism in the recent past. The promised defeat of some of the groups that have long been touted as being close to defeat is still little more than that – a promise. And an empty one at that.
During the Obama presidency, the US has been transformed. On 8 November the American people said no more. They also said no to a style of leader that many outside of America might feel is “ideal”, but so many inside the US feel is un-American.
Moreover, the American public didn’t want big government, increased national debt, universal healthcare, the continued liberalisation of social policies, the likelihood of a more progressive and liberal judiciary, and support for an “open border hemispheric trading block”, something which continues to fail Western Europe.
What they wanted is a leader who will passionately defend American interests around the globe – as President Ronald Reagan did during the 1980s. In my view, it was leadership that brought Reagan to power. And it is leadership that brought Trump to power. Trump was viewed by many Americans as “the next Reagan” – someone who is proud to make an unequivocal and unapologetic case for America.
In short, Americans want jobs, economic growth, and trade deals which serve their best interests, not their trading partners. They want a strong national defence, decisive foreign policy and they want tighter borders. Most of all, they want government to be firmly out of their lives.
US 2016 ELECTION RESULTS
WHO WON THE POPULAR VOTE?
Hillary Clinton won with 48.2% of the vote; Donald Trump had 46.1%.
… AND THE ELECTORAL COLLEGE?
Trump finished with 304 Electoral College votes; Clinton won 227 (270 are required to become president).
Younger Americans (those aged 18-44) voted for Clinton, while older people preferred Trump.
57.8%, down from 58.6% in 2012 and 61.6% in 2008.
Trump’s strongest performance was in Wyoming where he secured 70.1% of the vote; Clinton’s best result was in the District of Columbia (Washington D.C.), where she attracted 92.8% of the vote.