Likely Trump Victory Leaves Media Stunned

by Paige Albiniak  |  11.09.2016

As the election rolled into Tuesday’s late hours without a declared winner, media outlets reporting on results were clearly stunned that Donald Trump appeared to be headed to victory in both the electoral college and the popular vote.

“[Trump] has many more options on the board in contradiction to everything we’ve been saying up until today,” said CNN’s Jake Tapper.

Throughout the general election, polls had been indicating a Clinton victory, with most putting her up by 4+ points in the popular vote and saying that Trump had virtually no path to a win in the electoral college. At Daily Brief’s deadline on Tuesday night, Trump was leading the popular vote by 1 percent, and leading the electoral college with 244 votes to Clinton’s 215.

Still hanging in the balance at deadline were Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, according to the New York Times and FiveThirtyEight. Should Clinton lose Michigan, as expected at press time, it would be the first time that state has gone to a Republican presidential candidate since 1988.

“What I do know is that the country is more agitated than we realized. People are very unhappy with recent changes, and they wanted to speak out against it. Washington and we in the national media have walled ourselves off too much from where people live,” said NBC News’ Tom Brokaw.

The markets, too, seemed shocked by the results, with Wall Street futures down 800 points and financial markets falling abroad, according to the New York TImes. Asian markets opened down and the dollar weakened around the globe even before Trump officially won.

Markets behaved similarly after the UK voted to leave the European Union, a decision known as Brexit. The U.S. election revealed much more clearly how similarly many Americans feel about immigration and globalism. Trump’s campaign platform revolved around sealing off America’s borders, renegotiating — if not ending altogether — many of America’s trade and diplomatic pacts, and generally taking a much more isolationist view of the United States’ role in the world. Trump has vowed, however, to take a much tougher stance on the Islamic State.

Other issues that seemed to sway the election in Trump’s favor include Obamacare, gun rights and cultural issues, such as gay marriage and marijuana legalization.

“This is a real victory for the people,” said former New York Mayor and outspoken Trump supporter Rudy Giuliani on MSNBC. “This is the people beating the establishment. People rising up against a government they find to be dysfunctional.”

Republicans also held the House of Representatives and were on track to maintain their majority in the Senate.

READ MORE: Broadcasting & Cable

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