Donald Trump’s expectation-defying win of the presidency last night has invigorated some, demoralized others and shocked the nation across the board. While many polls predicted that democratic nominee Hillary Clinton would win by a sizable margin due to the various controversies surrounding Trump’s campaign, immense voter turnout for the republican candidate won him the electoral vote majority.
“I had a bet that Hillary would win,” junior Carter Graceson said. “After Trump’s tape from Access Hollywood dropped, his poll numbers were in the trash. The thing is, it’s Trump. He’s untouchable. It seems like at so many points throughout his campaign, people would say ‘this is it for Trump’ [or] ‘Trump can’t survive this’ and he never got stopped. It’s kind of impressive.”
Even those that didn’t support Clinton and took a neutral or oppositional stance found the results of the election surprising.
“I personally didn’t like either of the candidates so I wasn’t going to be super happy either way, but I was surprised with the outcome because all of the prediction were in Hillary’s favor,” sophomore Claire Casey said.
To add fire to the conflict, Clinton won the popular vote by approximately 200,000 votes. The disparity has reanimated calls that the Electoral College system is outdated.
“[It] serves virtually no purpose other than taking the power to appoint a president out of the hands of all Americans and giving to a select few,” senior Maya El-Hage said.
Now that Trump has officially become the President-elect, the community is estimating the benefits of the outcome and what a Trump presidency will mean for the American people.
“I think it’s fine,” junior Joseph Crawford said. “[Four] years of Trump won’t be as bad as people think. I think he’ll be good for the economy and he’ll be humbled by the office and what he says and does.”
However, various concerns have stemmed from the win regarding the controversies surrounding Trump, including accusations of misogyny, sexual assault and failing to pay taxes.
“[Zero] respect for anyone supporting Trump. A vote for trump is a vote for racism, bigotry, sexism, ignorance, and everything we stand against,” junior Holly Waters tweeted on her personal twitter account, @hollyywaters.
Others have taken issue not with Trump, but the policies of his running mate and future Vice President, Governor Mike Pence.
“He’s a dumb, young Earth creationist who [has] said creationism should be taught in school,” Graceson said. “On the other hand, political correctness is dead, not even because of the actions Trump will take, but just because his unfiltered existence is in defiance of it.”
As a result, there are calls for Democrats to try and strike a balance between working alongside the Trump administration while retaining their core beliefs.
“I think Democrats in power should try to work with Trump as much as they can while also standing up for Democratic morals,” El-Hage said. “Trump did a lot of talk about things that are pretty scary to imagine for a Democrat, like building a wall and banning Muslim immigrants, but he can’t do any of that by himself and I think Democrats need to continue to fight for what’s right.”
Regardless of the debate over whether Trump’s win is beneficial to America or not, this election represents a marked change in the mindsets and future of the community.
“It’s hard to tell what it means for the future of the United States,” history teacher Ross Naquin said. “I think there is an ideological shift that is happening and I don’t know what the ramifications of that until they happen. As far as what I think about Trump winning, people see this as someone radical winning but that’s democracy and it is what it is.”
Staff reporters Kate Carniol, Chloe Pignano, Mia Toser and Johann Young contributed to this article.