By Dylan Carlson, ’19
Nov. 9 marked Donald J. Trump’s first day as president-elect. The night of Nov. 8 was a sleepless one for most, watching restlessly as news networks such as CNN, FOX, and NBC reported the latest developments of the 2016 presidential election. Finally, around 2:30 a.m., the Associated Press officially announced: Donald Trump will be the next president of the United States. While Hillary Clinton had won the popular election by more than 630 thousand votes, Trump won the electoral vote, 290-228. However, as was with the Gore v. Bush election, the electoral vote overrides the popular election.
Senior James Russell followed the election closely, and believes the people chose the better of the two candidates.
“I wouldn’t say Trump is the best candidate, but I think he has good policies,” Russel said. “No one can say what his legacy is going to be as president and I don’t think Trump knows either. But of the two [Trump and Hillary], I think he is better.”
In the wake of Trump’s victory, there have been numerous protests across the country. Among the cities that were scenes of anti-Trump protests were New York; Los Angeles; Orlando; Asheville, North Carolina; Nashville, Tennessee; and Columbus, Ohio. While the protest have largely been peaceful, there have been several incidents of violence reported, with several arrests during clashes with police, burning of American flags and vandalism of private properties.
Sophomore Audrey Molnar does not condone the burning of flags or vandalism, however, Molnar believes it is important to go out and protest, as long as it remains peaceful.
“I don’t like when the protests are violent, but when they’re peaceful, it is important to express your opinions,” Molnar said.
While the popular election has been closed, it is not until Dec. 19 that the electors will cast their ballot and officially elect the 45th president of the United States. On Nov. 9, a petition created by Daniel Brezenoff from North Carolina appeared on Change.org calling for “electors to ignore their states’ votes and cast their ballots for Secretary Clinton.” Brezenoff went on to explain electors must ensure that Trump does not become president,
“Mr. Trump is unfit to serve… his impulsivity, bullying, lying, admitted history of sexual assault… make him a danger to the Republic,” Brezenoff wrote.
As of Dec. 1, almost 4.7 million people have signed the petition, over 75 percent of the way to their intended 6 million petitioners. There has been much controversy surrounding the system of the electoral college.
Freshman Jonah Kearney thinks the Gore v. Bush election and the likely outcome of the Clinton v. Bush election, proves the electoral vote is outdated and the president should be elected through the outcome of the popular vote.
“Democracy is supposed to be about the people. And the electoral vote has allowed people who have lost the popular vote to win,” Kearney said. “Shouldn’t the people be the ones who elect their president, not the electors?”
However, Sophomore Sebastian Chambers believes the electoral college system allows people who might not be heard to have a greater voice.
“The most populous cities happen to be Democratic, like New York, and LA. The electoral vote allows people like in Texas, and other Republican states to be more heard,” Chambers said.
Until Jan. 6, 2017 when Congress counts and certifies the electoral votes, it will be a time of uncertainty. People will protest and try to reverse the election results, and others will hope there is a peaceful transition of power. Until then, it remains unclear what further plot twists the election holds for the American people.