• Popular Vote Is Very Close
• What Happens Next?
• How Did This Happen?
• How Does This Result Affect 2018?
• Election Postmortem, Take One
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The final results are in in 45 states, with Donald Trump winning 276 electoral votes and Hillary Clinton winning 218. Here is the map from Politico:
Of the five states still not called, Trump seems very likely to win Alaska, Arizona, and Michigan. Clinton is likely to win Minnesota. This would bring Trump to 306 and Clinton to 228. Currently, Trump leads in New Hampshire by 307 votes, but 7% of the precincts have not reported yet, so that could change. Trump appears to have won Maine's northern congressional district, ME-02. (V)
While Donald Trump has a clear majority in the Electoral College, as of 10:10 am EST, the popular vote is still very close. Clinton has 59,299,381 and Trump has 59,135,740, giving Clinton a popular vote lead of 163,641. The final tallies are not in yet, so that could yet change, but if Clinton ends up winning the popular vote, Democrats could use Trump's loss to try to delegitimize him. They are going to be yelling: "The system is rigged" for 4 years. Also noteworthy is that the major party candidates got a mere 118 million votes, unless a lot more come in. This is less than the 125 million in 2012. Some votes are yet uncounted in California and Washington state. This is the second time in 16 years that the popular-vote winner might lose the election. (V)
Donald Trump's win brings up a whole bunch of questions going forward, Some of the more interesting ones are these:
- What will Obama say to Trump when they meet?
- Can Trump calm the markets and the world?
- Will Trump reach out to those who oppose him?
- Will the Democrats fight Trump tooth and nail with filibusters?
- What will Republicans who opposed Trump do now?
We are definitely in uncharted territory. Not only is Trump completely inexperienced in governing, but he is not someone who likes to play second fiddle to anyone. A possible, but unlikely, scenario is that vice president-elect Mike Pence, Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) get together every Monday morning to plan how to run the government that week, while Trump goes off to hold big rallies. The only recent precedents are President Eisenhower, who put the country on autopilot while he went out golfing, and President Reagan, who had lots of government experience but little interest in the details of running the country. But Trump isn't really like either of these. (V)
In the coming days there is going to be a lot of 20-20 hindsight about how the greatest upset in American history happened. We will cover it. Here are some initial thoughts.
- A lot of people in the country are very angry with both parties, and Trump promised radical change
- Sexism, racist, and generally bigotry was always there, it just needed a champion and it found one
- Clinton saw that a lot of Democrats preferred Bernie, but she simply couldn't plausibly become Bernie
- Many Sanders voters grudgingly voted for Clinton, but didn't volunteer, donate, or bring their friends along
- A lot of people saw Trump as a decisive leader based on his TV show
- Trump had a simple message: "Let's go back to the 1950s"; Clinton didn't have any message at all
- Comey's letter may have influenced millions of votes before he finally said: "Oops, only lap pix on the laptop"
- The influence of the Latino vote was greatly overestimated
- The Republicans brilliantly made a mountain out of a molehill, a.k.a. an email server
When the exit poll data starts to come in, we'll have a better idea what really happened. To some extent, Trump's wins in Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio, and Iowa are all part of the "revenge of the angry, white blue-collar man" story. North Carolina and Florida don't fit that pattern. We'll have to wait to see what happened there. (V)
One silver lining for the Democrats is that it makes life somewhat easier in 2018, when half a dozen Democrats in red states are up for reelection in the Senate. Traditionally, the party in the White House loses seats in the midterms, and now that will be the Republican Party. Also, with complete control of all branches of government, the Republicans are going to have to deliver. That won't be so easy. The stock market is already looking grim. Suppose we have a Trump recession? Trump isn't going to be able to bring back millions of factory jobs. What happens when his supporters discover that it's not going to happen and they were suckered? What happens when he discovers that Congress is in no mood to finance a $20 billion wall and Mexico really is not going to pay for it? He could ban all Muslims from entering the country, but suppose he does and all the Arab countries say: "You want to fight ISIS? Go ahead. We're not going to help." Trump could appoint a very young, very conservative judge to the Supreme Court, but most of his other promises aren't really doable and his followers are bound to be disappointed when they belatedly discover this. (V)
2:40 am ESTHillary Clinton has called Donald Trump and conceded. Donald Trump will be the 45th President of the United States.
We are going to take a break for a while and be back with more later in the day.
2:31 am ESTCNN projects that Trump will win Wisconsin.It has him at 257 electoral votes now. If he wins either Michigan or Pennsylvania, it's all over, and he is leading in both.
Barring a miracle (or something close, at least), Donald Trump will be the next President of the United States. This is, almost certainly, the most stunning result in American political history. There's Dewey and Truman, of course, but at least Truman was an experienced politician and a sitting president. Trump will be the first POTUS with neither military nor public service on his resume.
Over the next several days, we'll cover some of the fallout from this earth-shattering development. For now, a few immediate questions, lessons, etc.:
- How can the pollsters ever show their faces again? They missed, early and
often, over and over. For all the recent polling embarrassments, this one will
be the king for a very long time.
- Beyond polling, every other "clue" that we have for predicting an election
has been thrown into question. Unemployment is 4.9% The stock market is as high
as it's ever been. Obama's approval rating is sky-high (by modern standards).
The betting markets were wrong. The polling aggregators (including us) were
wrong. The exit polls were wrong.
- Similarly, everything we thought we knew about campaigning was apparently in
error. Conventions? Don't matter. Debates? Don't matter. Endorsements? Don't
matter. High-profile defections? Don't matter. Missteps? Don't matter?
Commercials? Don't matter. Ground game? Doesn't matter. An All-Star team of
campaign surrogates, including one former president, one sitting president, and
a wildly popular first lady? Doesn't matter. The "blue wall"? Not a thing.
- Could Hillary Clinton have run a better campaign? In retrospect, she
probably should have invested more time and resources in the Rust Belt, but
otherwise she ran the modern campaign playbook with great skill. There does not
seem to be much more that she could have done.
- Does Trump appear to be headed for a disastrous presidency? Historical
precedent says yes, and yet historical precedent was turned on its ear tonight.
One obvious question: Exactly how badly would he have to mess up to lose his
- The GOP is going to get a nice, long run with its hands on the levers of
power. The party has the White House for at least four years. The House is
gerrymandered nine ways to Sunday, and the Senate map in 2018 is ghastly for the
blue team, so the GOP will have Congress for four years.
- What will Trump's relationship with the GOP be like? Speaker Paul Ryan
(R-WI) held him at arm's length, he clashed with Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), Gov.
John Kasich (R-OH) was nothing but disdainful, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) slammed
Trump at his own convention. Meanwhile, there are going to be plenty of new
officeholders who owe their jobs to Trump's coattails.
- Are we really going to have an Attorney General Christie? Secretary of State
Gingrich? Secretary of Homeland Security Giuliani?
- It will take a long time to unravel some of the mysteries of November 8.
How, for example, did Donald Trump capture more Latino voters than Mitt
Romney? How did nearly half of the non-college women vote for the man behind
P***ygate? Was there really a Bradley effect, where people were lying about whom
they planned to vote for?
- The new power brokers are, it would seem, white working class voters. Will
Trump re-center the nation's priorities on them? Can he? Many of those jobs that
left are not coming back.
Trump and Congress could change the laws to make it unprofitable for companies to
do their manufacturing abroad (over the dead bodies of the GOP establishment and donors),
but if those factories do come back, they will be modern factories employing 100 computer
engineers, 100 mechanical engineers, 10,000 robots, and 0 blue-collar workers.
- On a related point, was this a bloodletting that the establishment needed?
The Democrats have spent quite a few years focusing on the concerns of coastal
elites and minorities at the expense of other constituencies. The Republicans
have spent years obstructing, and waving shiny objects like gay marriage, while
doing the bidding of the business wing of the party. Those who are disheartened
tonight might hold out hope that Tuesday night's stinging rebuke, which was
directed at both Democrats and Republicans, will cause a reboot of some sort.
Perhaps the nation can, one day in the not-too-distant future, get back to a
place where compromise is possible and the filibuster is not the first card that
- Russia is likely very happy tonight, Ukraine, China, and Mexico are not.
Trump seems likely to make America's relationship with the more difficult
countries of the world (Iran, North Korea, etc.) worse. Meanwhile, will
America's traditional allies be able to work with The Donald? To take him
seriously? Will America have any moral authority any more?
- What's going to be first to go? Obamacare? The Paris Accords? NAFTA? NATO? Surely, PaddyPower will be taking bets soon.
- To those who may have thought we were living in a post-racial world, keep in
mind that the KKK had their best night in 50 years. And, as CNN's Van Jones
pointed out, part of the story on Tuesday night was "whitelash."
- Further, will we be able to have a national conversation about sexism? There
can be little question that at least some of the opposition to Hillary Clinton
was gender-based. Meanwhile, 50 million people have bestowed their vote on a man
who, at very least, objectifies women in the coarsest of terms. And, at worst,
who thinks nothing of sexually assaulting them.
- Whither the Democratic Party? Everyone thought 2020 would be a bitter
struggle for the soul of the Republican Party, between the evangelicals, the
mainstream Republicans, and the populists. Instead, it's going to be a struggle
for the soul of the blue team. Who will emerge victorious? The establishment
Democrats, in the person of a Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) or a Gov. Jay Nixon (D-MO)? The
progressives, with an Elizabeth Warren or a Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) or a Sen. Jeff Merkeley (D-OR) carrying the
torch? Some other faction?
- What, exactly, is going to happen with the Trump University case? What
happens if a sitting president is convicted of fraud? The GOP, if recent memory
serves, has been pretty eager to impeach any president found guilty of such
This is just a first draft; many more good questions and observations will be raised in the next few days, once some of the dust has settled. (Z)
2:04 am ESTJohn Podesta just spoke and said there would be no announcements tonight.
2:02 am ESTMarijuana will be legalized in Nevada.
1:51 am ESTCNN projects a Trump win in Alaska
NYT projects a Trump win in Pennsylvania
1:29 am ESTThe third party candidates mattered this time.
In WI, Trump leads by 3.2%, Johnson + Stein = 4.6%
In MI, Trump leads by 1.8%, Johnson + Stein = 4.8%
In NH, it is a tie, Johnson + Stein = 5.0%
1:16 am ESTTrump still leads by 1.4 million popular votes.
1:14 am ESTTrump is preparing his victory speech.
CNN has called Utah for Donald Trump.
12:51 am ESTCatherine Cortez Masto has won Sen. Harry Reid's (D-NV) seat. There aren't going to be too many other Democratic pickups.
12:35 am ESTCNN projects Clinton will win NV
12:32 am ESTIt is now down to NH, WI, MI, and PA
12:27 am ESTClinton leads in NH by 18 votes
12:16 am ESTWe've had 1.2 million visits to the site today and the server is having some problems. Not sure how long we can keep going.
12:13 am ESTTrump wins Utah
12:12 am ESTTrump is ahead nationally by 1 million votes.
12:09 am ESTCNN projects Trump will win IA
12:02 am ESTDow futures are down 5%, the largest amount since the day the market opened after Sept. 11
12:01 am ESTA quick rundown on the key Senate races: The Democrats have picked up Illinois. It's too early to call Pennsylvania, Nevada, New Hampshire, and Missouri. The Republicans are likely to hold Wisconsin. The Republicans have definitely held Indiana, North Carolina, and Florida. The upshot: The GOP is going to hold the Senate.
11:55 pm ESTTrump is leading in MI by 32,000 votes and in WI by 90,000
11:48 pm ESTCNN projects GA for Trump
11:46 pm ESTFox News has called Wisconsin for Donald Trump. Meanwhile, everyone is now talking about possible 269-269 scenarios. In that case, the election would go to the House, with one state getting each vote. More Republican delegations than Democratic delegations, and presumably they would prefer a RINO to a Clinton.
11:42 pm ESTCNN projects that Clinton will win WA
11:36 pm ESTCNN projects Trump will win Florida.
11:22 pm ESTEveryone was expecting bloodletting within the Republican Party. Now the bloodletting is going to be in the Democratic Party, with the Sanders/Warren wing blaming the establishment for the poor showing, even if Clinton pulls it off.
11:17 pm ESTCNN projects that Clinton will win OR.
11:09 pm ESTCNN projects North Caroliina for Trump
11:05 pm ESTDow futures are down 700
11:01 pm ESTCNN calls CA HI for Clinton and ID for Trump
10:55 pm ESTRichard Burr reelected in North Carolina Senate race
10:50 pm ESTCNN projects Clinton will win CO
10:47 pm ESTDow Futures went down 750, then came back to "only" 600 down.
10:44 pm ESTTrump is now leading in AZ, WI, MI, NC, and FL and has won OH.
10:42 pm ESTTrump is doing much better in MI and WI than polls showed
10:40 pm ESTCNN projects Clinton wins VA
10:28 pm ESTCNN has called Ohio for Trump
CNN calls New Mexico for Clinton, Missouri for Trump.
10:06 pm ESTThe markets are taking a big hit. Dow futures down 500 points; Mexican peso way down.
10:02 pm ESTThe betting markets are going nuts; Trump's up to 45%-55% to win.
9:55 pm ESTClinton take a slight lead in VA
9:45 pm ESTCNN has projected that the Republicans will keep control of the House
The results so far, with Donald Trump up in almost every competitive state, are nothing short of stunning. This is bringing to mind the polling disasters with the Brexit, Israeli elections, UK elections, etc. If this holds, every pollster in the business will be out of business. Meanwhile, whether Trump wins or not, this is not going to be the repudiation of Trumpism that the GOP elite was hoping for.
9:25 pm ESTNote that the data gets entered as it comes in. Sometimes only a few percent of the precincts are reporting. You can mouse over the map to see that.
9:10 pm ESTRep. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) is the Democrats' first Senate pickup. Marco Rubio and Rep. Todd Young (R-IN) have held those two seats for the GOP. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) has been re-elected.
8:22 pm ESTWe had some problems. They seem to be fixed now
7:37 pm ESTWe are just getting revved up now. Trump won KY and IN and WV. Clinton won VT
6:58 pm ESTOops. We hate to begin with an apology, but we need to. This morning we entered a YouGov poll that showed Trump ahead in Florida. That was actually a Georgia poll. As a result, the map showed Florida as a tie. When the poll was changed to Georgia, Clinton now leads in Florida and has 317 electoral votes. In the text, we said we didn't believe Florida was going to be a tie and fixing the incorrect data confirmed our intuition. We are so sorry for the error.
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---The Votemaster and Zenger
Nov08 Our Prediction: Clinton Will Win
Nov08 Clinton Leads in Eight of Nine New National Polls
Nov08 Latino Vote Is Surging
Nov08 Justice Department to Monitor Polls in 28 States
Nov08 Candidates' Final Day Is Hectic
Nov08 Democrats Vote Early
Nov08 Americans Don't Think the Election Is Rigged
Nov08 Supreme Court Declines to Overturn Appeals Court on Voter Intimidation Order in Ohio
Nov08 Obama Campaigns in Michigan for Clinton
Nov08 Stock Market Zooms Up
Nov08 Clinton Draws First Blood
Nov08 Final Senate Update
Nov08 Will Republicans Really Obstruct SCOTUS Nominee?
Nov08 Will Trump's Movement Outlast Him?
Nov07 Comey: After Reviewing New Emails, Clinton Will Not Be Charged
Nov07 Clinton Continues to Lead in the Electoral College
Nov07 National Polls Give Clinton a Small Lead
Nov07 Prediction Models Agree that Clinton Will Beat Trump
Nov07 Betting Markets Say Clinton Will Win
Nov07 Trump's Aides Block His Twitter Access
Nov07 Reid's Machine Could Be the Deciding Factor in the Election
Nov07 Is Michigan in Play?
Nov07 Libertarian Veep Candidate Weld Kinda, Sorta Endorses Clinton
Nov07 Pope Francis Kinda Endorses Clinton, Too
Nov07 Judge Says that RNC Is Not Working with Trump
Nov07 The Nine Races that Will Determine Control of the Senate
Nov07 Today in Donald Trump Takedowns
Nov07 Wikileaks Makes Another Dump
Nov06 Charlie Cook Says Trump Could Possibly Win
Nov06 ABC News/WaPo Tracking Poll Growing Bullish on Hillary Again
Nov06 Early Voting Continues to Presage Trouble for Trump
Nov06 Clinton's Free Music Concerts Aren't About Music at All
Nov06 Supreme Court Bans People from Collecting and Submitting Absentee Ballots
Nov06 Strange Incident at Trump Rally in Nevada
Nov06 Trump's Final Ad Is Rather Antisemitic
Nov06 Maybe There Is A Good Reason Giuliani Is Supporting Trump
Nov05 Clinton Indictment Story Falls Apart, Sends Everyone Scrambling
Nov05 Melania Trump Violated Immigration Law
Nov05 Unemployment Down, Wages Up
Nov05 Clinton's Ground Game Could Sink Trump
Nov05 Latino Early Voting Is Way Up This Year
Nov05 Judge Orders Voters Restored to North Carolina Rolls
Nov05 What Will Trump Say If He Loses?
Nov05 How Would a Contested Election Work?
Nov05 Catholics Voting for Democrats Risk Eternal Damnation
Nov05 Ryan Might Step Down as Speaker
Nov05 Polarization Has Become Geographic
Nov05 If Clinton Wins, She Will Face a Tough Choice on the Supreme Court
Nov05 More Nails Pounded into Christie's Coffin