Elections demonstrate the main purpose of a democracy occasionally resulting in a transition of power between political parties. This can be challenging due to the extreme divide of the two-party system and an uncertainty of the extent to which the president’s powers and responsibilities will soon be carried out. As the nation comes to grips with the once-unimaginable scenario of Donald Trump in the White House for the next four years, the country needs to accept it, even though no one predicted it. The democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, won the popular vote, but Trump took America by storm with the Electoral College. Americans must unite for the sake of the republic, as Trump will soon lead a vibrantly diverse democracy.
At this point, the country has had a week to settle down from the shock that the elections brought. The significance of merging this political divide is what will ensure a peaceful transfer of power. Regardless of the results, either candidate would have made a major impact on the next four years: the first woman president or the first president from a non-political background. Overall, with either candidate, this is the change that America has been asking for. It has resulted in a significant, historical moment that will be remembered. This election could potentially change our understanding of American politics – not in a negative way – but in a way that raises questions and brings a new perspective.
It is safe to say America was traumatized when Trump was announced president-elect, mainly because of the voting process. Citizens elect officials to lead and represent us, which was not entirely exhibited in this election. Trump won the most votes… in the Electoral College. The majority of the nation projected a Clinton win from all of the polls and surveys administered, which is why the results were met with shock across America. Elections are held to give ordinary citizens a say in who represents them, however, some of the country feels that the system is rigged because the candidate with the popular vote will not be in office. Typically the Electoral College magnifies the popular vote. An election like this one only occurs on a rare occasion similar to Al Gore’s in 2000, which is why it was so surprising.
Elections are in place to provide the American citizens a voice, however, it is not always heard. Political parties play a major role in elections; a citizen typically knows whom he or she is voting for before the candidate is nominated because of party identification. This added to the surprise of the results because of the previous majority affiliation with the Democratic Party; the democrats will be out of power in both the White House and Congress for the first time since 2006. It is crucial for these political parties to come to an agreement – or at least decrease the hateful, harmful acts of outrage – to ensure a smooth transfer of power from the democrats to the republicans.
The expectations of the president’s power have increased immensely over time, which causes such hesitation when transitioning into office. Responsibilities such as assembling a cabinet and nominating a Supreme Court justice are underway and coming from Trump’s inner circle. Even so, the senate has to approve it – one of many checks on the presidential powers. There is an illusion that the president is mighty and powerful but in reality, his powers are very limited. However, there will be a unified government, so more should get done.
It is interesting to see a sense of extreme fear and uncertainty that comes along with Trump as president-elect. Trump in the White House could be the change we have all been looking for. He is the unusual candidate that no one saw coming; it was even seen as a joke at first. With his background, though, I predict he will treat the country like one of his many successful businesses, which will ultimately create a new perspective in politics. With a unified government finally back in place, I believe Trump will carry out his many proposed policies and give a whole new meaning to the word ‘presidency’.