Thursday 23 March 2017

Donald Trump vows to be 'president for all Americans': The story so far

* Trump scores shock wins in major battleground states including Florida, Ohio
* Chants of 'Lock her up' at Trump election rally referencing Clinton
* Dollar, peso and stock markets fall on results

By John Whitesides and Steve Holland

Hillary Clinton's speech is seen on a television screen on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. (AP)
Hillary Clinton's speech is seen on a television screen on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. (AP)
Jake Krupa colors in an electoral map as states projected for Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump or Democratic Presidential nominee Hillary Clinton at an election watching party in Coconut Grove, Florida on November 8, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / RHONA WISERHONA WISE/AFP/Getty Images

Republican Donald Trump has stunned the world by defeating heavily favoured Hillary Clinton in the race for the White House, ending eight years of Democratic rule and sending the United States on a new, uncertain path.

A wealthy real-estate developer and former reality TV host, Trump rode a wave of anger toward Washington insiders to defeat Clinton, whose gold-plated establishment resume includes stints as a first lady, U.S. senator and secretary of state.

In his victory speech this morning he has vowed to be "president for all Americans" after pulling off an astonishing victory in the race for the White House.

He told jubilant supporters it was "now time for America to bind the wounds of division and come together".

Supporters of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump watch the results of the U.S. elections at the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney on November 9, 2016 in Sydney, Australia (Photo by Daniel Munoz/Getty Images)
Supporters of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump watch the results of the U.S. elections at the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney on November 9, 2016 in Sydney, Australia (Photo by Daniel Munoz/Getty Images)
Donald Trump and wife Melania after voting in New York Picture: REUTERS/Carlo Allegri
Hillary Clinton and her husband, former US President Bill Clinton, greet supporters. Photo: Reuters/Brian Snyder

And he pledged to keep his promise to "make America great again" after beating Hillary Clinton in a battle which went down to the wire.

At the end of one of the most divisive elections in modern US history, the Republican candidate sealed victory when he took key battleground states Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

The Clinton camp initially refused to throw in the towel.

But Mr Trump told supporters shortly before 8am UK time: "I've just received a call from Secretary Clinton. She congratulated us - it's about us - on our victory and I congratulated her and her family on a very, very hard fought campaign."

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 09: Republican president-elect Donald Trump delivers his acceptance speech during his election night event at the New York Hilton Midtown in the early morning hours of November 9, 2016 in New York City. Donald Trump defeated Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton to become the 45th president of the United States. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 09: Republican president-elect Donald Trump delivers his acceptance speech during his election night event at the New York Hilton Midtown in the early morning hours of November 9, 2016 in New York City. Donald Trump defeated Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton to become the 45th president of the United States. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 09: Republican president-elect Donald Trump delivers his acceptance speech during his election night event at the New York Hilton Midtown in the early morning hours of November 9, 2016 in New York City. Donald Trump defeated Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton to become the 45th president of the United States. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 09: Republican president-elect Donald Trump delivers his acceptance speech during his election night event at the New York Hilton Midtown in the early morning hours of November 9, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC) Reince Priebus (R) hugs Republican presidential elect Donald Trump during election night at the New York Hilton Midtown in New York on November 9, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSONJIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images
People cheer as voting results for Florida come in at Republican presidential nominee Donald Trumps election night event at the New York Hilton Midtown on November 8, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Republican presidential elect Donald Trump gestures while speaking during election night at the New York Hilton Midtown in New York on November 9, 2016. Photo: Getty
Republican presidential elect Donald Trump (L) gestures next to his family as he arrives to speak during election night at the New York Hilton Midtown in New York
Republican president-elect Donald Trump embraces his wife Melania Trump during his election night event at the New York Hilton Midtown in the early morning hours of November 9, 2016 in New York City. Donald Trump defeated Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton to become the 45th president of the United States. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Republican president-elect Donald Trump embraces his wife Melania Trump during his election night event at the New York Hilton Midtown in the early morning hours of November 9, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 09: Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Committee, delivers a speech as Republican president-elect Donald Trump looks on during his election night event at the New York Hilton Midtown in the early morning hours of November 9, 2016 in New York City. Donald Trump defeated Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton to become the 45th president of the United States. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Committee, delivers a speech as Republican president-elect Donald Trump looks on during his election night event at the New York Hilton Midtown in the early morning hours of November 9, 2016 in New York City. Donald Trump defeated Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton to become the 45th president of the United States. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Republican presidential elect Donald Trump (L) arrives with his family on stage to speak during election night at the New York Hilton Midtown in New York on November 9, 2016. Trump stunned America and the world Wednesday, riding a wave of populist resentment to defeat Hillary Clinton in the race to become the 45th president of the United States. / AFP PHOTO / MANDEL NGANMANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 09: Republican president-elect Donald Trump gives greets people in the crowd after delivering his acceptance speech at the New York Hilton Midtown in the early morning hours of November 9, 2016 in New York City. Donald Trump defeated Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton to become the 45th president of the United States. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Campaign chairman John Podesta speaks on stage at Democratic presidential nominee former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's election night event at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center November 9, 2016 in New York City. Clinton is running against Republican nominee, Donald J. Trump to be the 45th President of the United States. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
Hillary Clinton tweeted "Whatever happens tonight, thank you for everything."/ Pic via @HillaryClinton
A graphic depicting Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump squaring off in a boxing ring sits in Times Square on November 8, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
The Trump family and team watch the results (Photo: Twitter/Donald Trump)
Jake Krupa colors in an electoral map as states projected for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump or Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton at an election watching party in Coconut Grove, Florida. AFP PHOTO / RHONA WISERHONA WISE/AFP/Getty Images
The dollar tumbled against the yen and euro while the Mexican peso fell off a cliff as polling results in the knife-edge US presidential race pointed to a strong showing by Donald Trump. AFP PHOTO / BEHROUZ MEHRIBEHROUZ MEHRI/AFP/Getty Images
Ivanka Trump tweets: "Such a surreal moment to vote for my father for President of the United States! Make your voice heard and vote! #Election2016" Pic via Twitter/ @IvankaTrump
People watch voting results at Democratic presidential nominee former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's election night event at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center (Photo by Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images)
A woman reacts as she watches voting results at Democratic presidential nominee former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's election night event at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
People cheer at Republican presidential nominee Donald Trumps election night event at the New York Hilton Midtown on November 8, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
An employee of a foreign exchange trading company stands in front of a monitor displaying Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton (L) and Republican presidential nominee (Photo by Yuya Shino/Getty Images)
A police officer stands outside Trump Tower in New York City on election day November 8, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / DOMINICK REUTERDOMINICK REUTER/AFP/Getty Images
People vote on the US presidential election at Santa Monica City Hall on November 8, 2016 in Santa Monica, California / AFP PHOTO / Frederic J. BROWNFREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images
Nicolette Janoski displays a sticker after voting on November 8, 2016 in Fort Worth, Texas. (Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images)
Voters cast ballots at a laundrette in Chicago, Illinois Picture: AFP/Getty
People cheer as voting results for Iowa come in at Republican presidential nominee Donald Trumps election night event at the New York Hilton Midtown on November 8, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Donald Trump’s son Eric glances across at the ballot being filled by his wife Lara Yunasska while voting at the 53rd Street Library in New York. Photo: Bloomberg
A man poses for a picture near the cardboard cutouts of U.S. presidential nominees Hillary Clinton (L) and Donald Trump, at an election event hosted at the U.S. ambassador's residence in Kathmandu, Nepal November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Navesh Chitrakar
Supporters of U.S. Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton react at her election night rally in Manhattan, New York, U.S., November 8, 2016. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
A supporter of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton bows her head at an election night rally in New York, U.S., November 8, 2016. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
A supporter of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump holds up a Trump doll during an election night party at a hotel in downtown Phoenix, Arizona on November 8, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / Laura SegallLAURA SEGALL/AFP/Getty Images
People watch elections results during election night at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York on November 9, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / DON EMMERTDON EMMERT/AFP/Getty Images
People gather around Times Square to view televised results of the US presidential election on November 9, 2016 in New York. / AFP PHOTO / EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZEDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images
Supporters of U.S. Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton react at her election night rally in Manhattan, New York, U.S., November 8, 2016. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
A man leans out of a Hummer shouting words in support of U.S. Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump while driving through Times Square in New York, U.S., November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Mark Kauzlarich

Worried a Trump victory could cause economic and global uncertainty, investors were in full flight from risky assets such as stocks. In overnight trading, S&P 500 index futures fell 5 percent to hit their so-called limit down levels, indicating they would not be permitted to trade any lower until regular U.S. stock market hours on Wednesday.

The Associated Press and Fox News projected that Trump had collected just enough of the 270 state-by-state electoral votes needed to win a four-year term that starts on Jan. 20, taking battleground states where presidential elections are traditionally decided.

CNN reported Clinton had called Trump to concede concede the election.

A short time earlier, Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta told supporters at her election rally in New York to go home. "Several states are too close to call so we're not going to have anything more to say tonight," he said.

Victorious in a cliffhanger race that opinion polls had forecast was Clinton's to win, Trump won avid support among a core base of white non-college educated workers with his promise to be the "greatest jobs president that God ever created."

His win raises a host of questions for the United States at home and abroad. He campaigned on a pledge to take the country on a more isolationist, protectionist "America First" path. He has vowed to impose a 35 percent tariff on goods exported to the United States by U.S. companies that went abroad.

Both candidates, albeit Trump more than Clinton, had historically low popularity ratings in an election that many voters characterized as a choice between two unpleasant alternatives.

Trump, who at 70 will be the oldest first-term U.S. president, came out on top after a bitter and divisive campaign that focused largely on the character of the candidates and whether they could be trusted to serve as the country's 45th president.

The presidency will be his first elected office, and it remains to be seen how he will work with Congress. During the campaign Trump was the target of sharp disapproval, not just from Democrats but from many in his own party.

Television networks projected Republicans would retain control of the U.S. House of Representatives, where all 435 seats were up for grabs. In the U.S. Senate, the party also put up an unexpectedly tough fight to protect its majority in the U.S. Senate.

Trump entered the race 17 months ago and survived a series of seemingly crippling blows, many of them self-inflicted, including the emergence in October of a 2005 video in which he boasted about making unwanted sexual advances on women. He apologized but within days, several women emerged to say he had groped them, allegations he denied. He was judged the loser of all three presidential debates with Clinton.

TOUTS HIS BUSINESS ACUMEN

During the campaign, Trump said he would make America great again through the force of his personality, negotiating skill and business acumen. He proposed refusing entry to the United States of people from war-torn Middle Eastern countries, a modified version of an earlier proposed ban on Muslims.

His volatile nature and unorthodox proposals led to campaign feuds with a long list of people, including Muslims, the disabled, Republican U.S. Senator John McCain, Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly, the family of a slain Muslim-American soldier, a Miss Universe winner and a federal judge of Mexican heritage.

Throughout his campaign - and especially in his acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention in July - Trump described a dark America that had been knocked to its knees by China, Mexico, Russia and Islamic State. The American dream was dead, he said, smothered by malevolent business interests and corrupt politicians, and he alone could revive it.

He offered vague plans to win economic concessions from China, to build a wall on the southern U.S. border with Mexico to keep out undocumented immigrants and to pay for it with tax money sent home by migrants.

The Mexican peso plunged to its lowest-ever levels. The peso had become a touchstone for sentiment on the election as Trump threatened to rip up a free trade agreement with Mexico.

His triumph was a rebuke to President Barack Obama, a Democrat who spent weeks flying around the country to campaign against him. Obama will hand over the office to Trump after serving the maximum eight years allowed by law.

Trump promises to push Congress to repeal Obama's troubled healthcare plan and to reverse his Clean Power Plan. He plans to create jobs by relying on U.S. fossil fuels such as oil and gas.

CLINTON'S FAILED SECOND BID

Trump's victory marked a frustrating end to the presidential aspirations of Clinton, 69, who for the second time failed in her drive to be elected the first woman U.S. president.

In a posting on Twitter, Clinton acknowledged a battle that was unexpectedly tight given her edge in opinion polls going into Election Day.

"This team has so much to be proud of. Whatever happens tonight, thank you for everything," she tweeted.

The wife of former President Bill Clinton and herself a former U.S. senator, she held a steady lead in many opinion polls for months. Voters perceived in her a cautious and calculating candidate and an inability to personally connect with them.

Even though the FBI found no grounds for criminal charges after a probe into her use of a private email server rather than a government system while she was secretary of state, the issue allowed critics to raise doubts about her integrity. Hacked emails also showed a cozy relationship between her State Department and donors to her family's Clinton Foundation charity.

Trump seized on the emails to charge that Clinton represented a corrupt political system in Washington that had to be swept clean.

Trump's national security ideas, opposed by most of the elite voices across the political spectrum, have simultaneously included promises to build up the U.S. military while at the same time avoiding foreign military entanglements.

He wants to rewrite international trade deals to reduce trade deficits. He has taken positions that raise the possibility of damaging relations with America's most trusted allies in Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

He has promised to warm relations with Russia that have chilled under Obama over Russian President Vladimir Putin's intervention in the Syrian civil war and his seizure of Ukraine's Crimea region.

"Wouldn't it be nice if we could get along with Russia?" he said at many rallies.

Online Editors

Promoted articles

Editors Choice

Also in World News