The 2016 Presidential Election

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Sophomore (College 2nd year) ・Political Science ・MLA ・4 Sources

The latest presidential election was a hotly fought race with high stakes. It all came down to the basic tactics used by both sides of the rift. For eg, both teams had distinct slogans that resonated with their respective fan bases. The Hillary campaign used the slogan "Stronger Together," while Donald Trump used the slogan "Make America Great Again" (Poole). The latter message won the day and is remembered by the overwhelming majority of people. Another explanation for Trump's success is that he was able to manipulate the frames that resonated with the majority of liberals in the world (Poole). I believe that even though Trump was initially not the best candidate, he managed to frame his political ideologies in a way that they appealed to most of his supporters.
The November 2016 presidential election was one that was marred by some controversy. One of them was the one involving Hillary Clinton's emails (Smith). The FBI director, James Comey, in a letter to the Congress revealed how Hillary and some of her aides had been rather clumsy while handling rather classified information (Smith). This revelation was not taken kindly by some senior officials at the Department of Justice and other national leaders since they felt that the timing was not appropriate and it prejudiced one of the presidential candidates (Smith). Some of the leaders who criticized Comey's actions called for action to be taken against him for an apparent breach of the Hatch Act. All in all, poll ratings after Comey's revelation still showed that Hillary was still leading the more popular candidate (Smith). In light of the foregoing, I feel that it was very unfair and malicious for Comey to make such utterances just two weeks before the presidential elections.
Another controversy that graced the recent presidential elections in the United States involves the claim that Russian hackers assisted Trump to emerge victorious in the polls (Sanger and Shane). This allegation was founded on reports from the American intelligence agencies. Furthermore, it was also believed that the Russian hackers attacked the Democratic organizations as well as the Republican ones but did not reveal the data they had acquired from the latter (Sanger and Shane). Furthermore, there were numerous speculations as to what motivated the Russian hackers’ actions. Some believed that they did it to scuttle the elections or to ensure that the legitimacy of the outcome was in doubt (Sanger and Shane). It is unfortunate that in as much as there were substantial hacking claims, nothing was done to mitigate its effect. It would have been better to either recount the votes cast or order for a rerun of the elections.
By November 9, 2016, the numbers had already been crunched, and it was evident that Donald Trump had emerged victorious. However, unlike the excitement and heightened emotions that were witnessed during Obama's victory, Trump's victory was rather low-key (Fisher). Obama's election was deemed as a statement of optimism and social change in the United States (Fisher). On the other hand, it was clear what Trump's choice meant for America. According to Fisher (2016), Trump's election might have been the electorate's decision to choose between two evils, or it might have been an admission of exhaustion. In as much as it might not be clear-cut as to what motivated people to choose Trump over Hillary, I strongly believe that the American populace wanted to break the status quo and Trump was deemed to be the appropriate candidate to do so.

Works Cited

Fisher, Marc. “Considering what America’s choice of Donald Trump really Means.” The
Washington Post, 9 Nov. 2016, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/considering-what-americas-choice-of-donald-trump-really-means/2016/11/09/294e824a-a1ff-11e6-8d63-3e0a660f1f04_story.html?utm_term=.90d83c1bf831. Accessed 21 Dec. 2017.
Poole, Steven. “Make America Great Again – why are liberals losing the war of soundbites?”
The Guardian, 13 Nov. 2016,
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/nov/13/make-america-great-again-why-are-liberals-losing-the-war-of-soundbites. Accessed 21 Dec. 2017.
Sanger, David and Shane, Scott. “Russian Hackers Acted to Aid Trump in Election, U.S.
Says.” New York Times, 9 Dec. 2016,
https://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/09/us/obama-russia-election-hack.html?rref=collection%2Fnewseventcollection%2Frussian-election-hacking&action=click&contentCollection=politics&region=rank&module=package&version=highlights&contentPlacement=3&pgtype=collection. Accessed 21 Dec. 2017.
Smith, David. “The Hillary Clinton email controversy explained: what we know so far.” The
Guardian, 1 Nov. 2016,
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/oct/31/hillary-clinton-latest-emails-explained. Accessed 21 Dec. 2017.

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