The people of the United States of America Tuesday voted to reject the third term bid of the incumbent Democratic Party, by electing Donald Trump, a 70-year old real estate developer, and candidate of the Republican Party, as the 45th President of the most powerful nation in the world.
Trump was declared the president-elect after winning 278 electoral votes - he needed 270 out of 538 for victory – defying pre-election polling to claim swing states, winning the key battlegrounds of Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania.
Just like the situation in Ghana between the governing National Democratic Congress and the main opposition New Patriotic Party, the American presidency has alternated between the Democrats and the Republicans since 1992, with each party always serving for 8years of two terms.
The Democrats in 1992 won two straight terms; the Republicans came in 2001 and also ruled for 8 years before losing in 2008 to the Democrats again, who also ruled for 8 years before losing this Tuesday to the Republicans.
It has been the same story in Ghana between NPP and NDC since 1992. Coincidentally, anytime the Republicans win, NPP wins, and anytime the Democrats lose, NDC loses.
Donald Trump’s victory on Tuesday came as a surprise to many political pundits, after his main rival, Hilary Clinton, had been put ahead in various opinion polls prior to the November 8 elections.
With three presidential debates putting the Democratic candidate ahead, skeptics watched with alarm as Mr Trump comfortably took commanding lead in the race, winning massively in states like Florida, North Carolina, Ohio and Pennsylvania, considered battle grounds in American elections.
Considered as an underdog of the two main presidential candidates, Donald Trump stirred controversy with some of his campaign message particularly on immigration and America’s foreign policy.
Mr Trump in his victory speech made shortly after candidate of the Democratic Party, Hillary Clinton, had called to congratulate him, promised to be a President for all.
He called for unity, praising Mrs Clinton for a hard-fought campaign, adding that it was time for the people of America to come together.
“It is time. I pledge to every citizen of our land that I will be president for all of Americans, and this is so important to me. For those who have chosen not to support me in the past, of which there were a few people, I'm reaching out to you for your guidance and your help so that we can work together and unify our great country. As I've said from the beginning, ours was not a campaign but rather an incredible and great movement, made up of millions of hard-working men and women who love their country and want a better, brighter future for themselves and for their family,” he said.
The US President-elect also assured that America would work in peace with other countries.
“I want to tell the world community that while we will always put America's interests first, we will deal fairly with everyone, with everyone. All people and all other nations. We will seek common ground, not hostility; partnership, not conflict.”
Defeated presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, in her concession speech, pointed out that it was her wish that Donald Trump would be a President for all.
"I’m sorry that we did not win this election for the values we all share. You represent the best of America, and being your candidate has been one of the greatest honours of my life. I know how disappointed you feel, because I feel it too. This is painful, and it will be for a long time,” she told her supporters.
She was however quick to add that her campaign was not about personalities but about the America.
She stated: "But I want you to remember this. Our campaign was never about one person; it was about building a country that we love. And now I would like to take this moment to thank some of the people who really helped me with this, what they are calling tonight a very, very historic victory.”
Source: The New Statesman
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