[OPINION] Clinton vs Trump: The results, blow by blow
“I 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. Hillary has worked very long and very hard over a long period of time and we owe her a major debt of gratitude for her service to our country”.
That’s how US president-elect Donald Trump opened his first address to his supporters in New York after winning the election.
Trump then went on to call Democrats, Republicans and Independents to come together as one as one united people. “It’s time,” he said. He pledged to the citizens that he would be president for all Americans, reiterating that that is so important to him. He pleaded to those who did not support him for guidance and help to work together and unify the great country.
Over and above all this blah-blah, he went on to praise his movement as one that is inclusive of all races and religions and promised that he would rebuild America, support the veterans and have good relationships with all nations that were willing to have good relations with the US: We will get along with all the nations willing to get along with us.
Basically, Trump’s speech was a tightly woven web of lies that included the opposite of everything he has ever said since the start of his campaign, all tied up in a nice, disgusting bow with a little tag that reads: The world has ended, you are living in the aftermath.
The morning started with excitement. “I hope it’s not a walkover.” “I hope there’s a bit of a nail-biting challenge.” “I hope it’s not too easy for Hillary just for the sake of pure entertainment value.”
We arrived at the Taj Reserve in Cape Town just as the sun was coming up to watch the votes come in live from the US at a special screening hosted by the US Consulate General in South Africa. The room smelled like hope. And hope, as you all know, smells like a fresh buffet breakfast and brewing coffee.
The New York Times had an amazing real-time data visualisation on its website. The race between Trump and Hillary was neck-and-neck for a bit. But then… we paused for coffee and when we were done, the following unfolded…
5:48am Clinton has just taken the state of Colorado by 48.6%. She has 131 votes in total, she’s behind. I think it’s time to start thinking about what would happen if Trump became president. (Who knew that he would?)
5:56am The top 5 things that would happen if Trump became president (Trump’s victory was still a joke at this point):
Women would have their pssies grabbed (more than ever)
Squirrels would become extinct because all their skins would be used to make Trump wigs for all the Trump drones.
Americans would have to say goodbye to tacos and all taco trucks would be converted into illegal mobile pharmacies so that former Democrats could have access to painkillers for their eternal headache.
Canada would overtake Indian and China as the most overpopulated country in the world.
Every satirical sketch you have ever seen about Trump becoming president will be turned into a factual documentary.
6:02am I’ve noticed that the atmosphere in here is a bit nauseating. It’s like everyone is holding his or her vomit down. I don’t know if it’s because of the results as they currently stand, or because they have eaten way too many runny scrambled eggs this morning. (This was the nail-biting stuff I talked about earlier, little did I know, it would only get worse).
6:04am Clinton is up 190 to Trump’s 171 (I was hoping internally that the this would swing again ever so slightly just to keep things exciting… be careful what you wish for and all that).
6:09am Obama is saying something on the broadcast, but I can’t hear anything because everyone is stirring their coffee super hard, so your guess is as good as mine. I’m pretty sure he asked the crowd he addressed not to boo if Trump wins though. Which is kind of a tall order. Although, apparently, not really, because peeps love Trump and somebody forgot to tell us. (At the time of writing this, I did not know that it was actually not such a tall order that Trump would win).
6:14am Votes as they stand - Clinton 209 to Trump 216. Patricia De Lille is in the building. She’s wearing a grape coloured pantsuit - A trendy political statement of sorts. (Patricia left. I don’t think she liked the coffee. Or the results).
6:18am Trump has just taken North Carolina. The numbers continue to change. Meanwhile, in other results… S Club:7, Jackson: 5, U:2, Maroon: 5 and if you need a break from all of this, you can find the bathroom 3 Doors Down. (Taking this key state changed everything).
6:23am There’s a young American girl sitting next to me playing games on her iPhone. I don’t know if she quite understands what’s happening. I feel bad for her future.
6:25am The little girl’s mom and dad have just shown up. They’ve been hovering above us and having a rant about Trump winning. They’re really upset. I wish I knew exactly what they were saying. I wish I hadn’t worn this damn beanie. (I really wish I knew what they are saying now that Trump has won).
6:27am In other observational news, there are a lot of really young journalists here. It’s very cute. They’re also really annoying. I can’t wait for the day they wake up and they realise that they are completely jaded and working for the media isn’t actually as cool as they think it is and we’re all really just losers. (And that they live in a time when Donald Trump is the president of the US).
6:36am Trump just took Florida. FYI, Florida is a state that is well known for all its retirement villages that play home to old, rich white people who would naturally vote Trump because they are in the winter of their lives and want to see the world burn. (Trump has won, but these people are still in the winter of their lives).
6:41am If Trump wins, Mexicans won’t be allowed into the country anymore. Who is going to build all the walls? (Mexicans. To keep Trump out).
6:47am The night is dark and full of Trump. I laugh to stop from crying. There is a very real possibility that what is being treated as the most entertaining reality show of all time is about to become a throwback to some of the worst problems in history with one of the worst kinds of leaders: A stupid, ignorant, middle-aged entitled white male. (This is the world that we live in).
6:52am There are bucket loads of champagne set up here - for celebration purposes. But with only 16 votes needed to win, it seems that some are drinking to remember (America’s not-so-distant Obama past) and some are drinking to forget (the impending doom). This is not Hotel California. This is not a lovely place.
6:57am The visual of Clinton headquarters in NY is making me feel really, really sad. People are crying. No one’s talking. One women is chewing gum like her life depends on it. It does. She is a person of colour. And a woman. (When can we stop apologising for our vaginas?)
7:01am Still waiting on the results of 9 states. Never underestimate the power of stupidity. (I told you so).
7:10am Trump gains another 6 electoral votes from Iowa. There’s a lot less laughter in the room now. Noise levels have dropped tremendously, we all sit and watch in disbelief.
7:13am I just took a final selfie with my white partner before Trump drives us apart. I am also about to close all my bookmarked tabs for fellowship applications to Stanford, Harvard and Michigan on account of being Muslim and a person of colour. (Trust your instincts, at least I got that admin out the way).
7:15am Markets keep crashing. Sterling is up against the dollar (A consolation of sorts, I’m sure, since the whole Brexit thing). At present, the Dow Jones is down by three percent, Asian markets have slowed down and everyone’s preparing for the possibility of a trade war and no, this does not mean that countries will start throwing canned goods at each other. (Although, now that Trump’s won, that might be what the fight looks like. He does seem like the kind of fighter who probably thinks the world is a playground for a three-year-old).
7:23am While we wait for the rest of the results, Google trends data reflects that “Moving to Canada” is one of its most searched topics, with the search rate up over 850% on the previous hour. Related terms people in the US are searching for are also: “Citizenship and Immigration Canada”, “Jobs in Canada” and “How to move to Canada if Trump wins”. The most searched for websites are “Government of Canada”, “Department of immigration and refugees” and oddly, “Iceland-A country in Europe”.
7:33am I want to talk about the data surrounding this search: “Department of immigration and refugees” for a little bit. People are stressing and Trump’s politics is very real. He is more than just a disgusting looking freak with a bad orange wig and a bad orange face. His presidency has real consequences for real people. It is estimated that the US has 70,000 to 90,000 refugees. All those people are on the hunt for a last-minute home because of one man. Most of the search interest for this country is coming from Delaware, which according to mapthe impact.org, is one of the most rapidly affected states when it comes to the growing immigrant population. 10% of the Delaware state workforce is comprised of immigrants. And the top countries of origin of these immigrants are Mexico, India and China. And I don’t have to tell you what Trump thinks about those. That is, he hates them. Of course, he has not considered that if all these people leave, Delaware’s economy will fall by at least 13%.
8:00am And in other news, more Latino citizens have voted for Trump than for Romney in the previous election. It’s not all black and white It’s mostly penis vs vagina. And the penis is winning. Again.
8:05am “This is a public service announcement. We have to interrupt this depressing breaking news with some live dark humour”:
- At least there’s California, where you can drown your sorrows in weed.
- Maybe if we press CTRL-ALT-DELETE this will all go away?
- Does Trump have a Force Quit button?
- The skin bleaching industry is about to experience a massive boom
- Dear world, I didn’t mess this up enough for you. So before I go, here’s Trump. Dropsmic 2016 OUT!
8:13am I wonder what other more qualified expert editors and journalists in South Africa think of all this. Verashni? Cruywagen?
8:26am It’s impossible for me to compute how an alleged rapist is getting the majority of votes over a highly qualified woman just because he is a man and she sent some emails that one time? Really?
8:33am We’ve been thanked by the US Consulate General for attending this event at an “ungodly” hour and we have also been asked to help celebrate the results of a successful democratic election regardless of the outcome, because at least it was peaceful. (And at least American women will have even less access to abortions, forced full-term pregnancies, and some more pssy snatching).
8:36am Social media is a not a barometer for anything. In fact, it’s just a noisy minority of a culture of bandwagon riders who enjoy making a lot of noise in a very secluded space. It isn’t a reflection of anything real. If it was, Trump would be falling, a woman would be president and #MondayMotivation would be declared a public holiday by now. Goes to show, just because you make a noise about something, doesn’t mean you change anything. (Wow. I am so philosophical right now). The only thing that clearly changes anything is the word “change”. Printed in big bold Helvetica letters on an official campaign placard. (And the tweets drone on).
8:41am Trump just gained 3 more electoral votes. He takes Alaska. It’s basically game over. I don’t even know why we’re all sitting in this room pretending to believe in miracles. That electoral interactive map on CNN looks like an eyesore from the Liberace house of crap. (And now the US has a president that looks the same way).
8:48am Meanwhile back at the ranch, a bunch of journos are waxing lyrical about political theory and swing state trend politics in the US. Something about Pennsylvania voting Trump but being a democratic state since 1992. There’s a part of me that wants to pull out a map and ask them to point out this state to me and tell me exactly what happens there without Googling it (besides the fact that maybe they changed from Democrat to Republican coz they just hate the idea of a woman president). Coz by the hem of Hillary’s pants, I don’t. It’s nice to have CNN on in the background though so that they all know what to say to each other. I don’t even trust my own opinion on which toilet paper I prefer.
8:53am If you ever wanted to see a room full of people waiting for Gandalf and believing in magic, you should be at the Taj Reserve room right now. (Most of them have left. Some defeated corpses remain).
9:01am Meanwhile at Trump headquarters, the audience is chanting: “Lock her up, lock her up”. This is obviously directed at Hillary.
9:24am It’s past 2 in the morning in New York. Trump is about to arrive at his campaign headquarters. Hillary has left her building. She will not address the crowd tonight. She will not concede. And just in case you were wondering, all is cool calm and collected in South Africa this morning, in that there are no protests outside Parliament. I just checked.
9:35am Never mind. Apparently Clinton has called Trump to concede.
9:48am Donald Trump, president-elect, walks up to the podium.
Haji Mohamed Dawjee is employed by Code For Africa at the head office in Cape Town as programme manager for impactAFRICA - the continent's largest fund for digital-driven data storytelling. She is a regular commentator on gender equality, sexuality, culture, race relations and feminism as well as ethics in the South African media environment.