By: Erica Lampert ~Staff Writer~
After a long election season, many Xavier students watched their votes count for the first time and saw Donald Trump become the new President-elect in a surprising victory.
Trump locked up the position over rival Hillary Clinton by almost 60 electoral votes after winning the swing states of Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania, Iowa and Wisconsin that President Barack Obama won in 2008.
While Trump had won the Electoral College votes, Clinton won the popular vote 61,166,160 votes to 60,475,727 votes.
“I was surprised at how inaccurate the predicted outcomes were, and it feels like our votes mean nothing if the popular vote was for Hillary but the electoral votes elected Trump,” junior Kate Frank said.
Along with Trump’s surprise victory in the presidential election, Republicans also won the senate with their 51 votes compared to 48 votes for the Democratic Party. The Republicans also won the house majority with 239 representatives to the Democrats 192 votes.
Xavier students left their mark on the election this year, with more than 400 on-campus residents taking the Student Government Association (SGA) voter shuttle to the election polls.
According to the Associate Director of Student Involvement Dustin Lewis, nearly all riders were first time voters, all lived on campus and the final count of ridership was 413.
The Hamilton County Board of Elections reported that 571 people registered to vote this year using an on-campus address. There were also some that were already registered and many that voted absentee in their home states. One student senator, Brandon Luther, was in charge of organization and funds for the shuttle as his senate project.
“It was something mentioned to over the summer. Discussions with the bus company started a little over a month ago,” Luther said. “Its something college students deserve, especially with an election as intense as this one.”
The number of students bused does not include students who voted absentee, voted early, or the large number of students who live off campus and voted at other polls.
“I thought the shuttle was a great idea, and I enjoyed it,” junior Devon James said. “I don’t have a car on campus, and I didn’t want to inconvenience my roommate who had already voted absentee by driving me and waiting for me to vote. I would definitely ride it again and thought it was very helpful.”
A number of other students set up tables before the election encouraging students to register to vote, and several others were set up during Election Day for any students who had any questions. Almost every whiteboard and chalkboard around campus contained messages encouraging students to get out and vote as well.
Since the election, Trump is planning on putting his 100 day plan, or the “Donald J. Trump Contract With The American Voter” into action as soon as he steps in office.
His plan has two parts with the first part containing a list of 18 measures that he hopes to enact during his first day as president.
This includes a proposal that will place term limits on members of Congress, remove restrictions on domestic oil and natural gas production, and renegotiate or withdraw from the North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
Trump also plans on undoing any executive actions he believes to be unconstitutional that Obama previously ordered.
He also wants to remove 2 million “criminal illegal immigrants” and “suspend immigration from terror-prone regions” to the United States.
The second part of his plan contains a list of 10 legislative proposals that he plans to introduce to Congress and pass within his first 100 days.
This list includes a tax reform that cuts corporate and personal income tax rates and a proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
The plan also includes a legislative proposal to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.
“I think we’re going to do some absolutely spectacular things for the American people,” Trump said. “We can’t get started fast enough, whether it’s health care or immigration. So many different things.”
Clinton publicly conceded the election to Donald J. Trump the day after the election and acknowledged the pain of the defeat.
She called on all her supporters to accept that he would be president and to give him a chance to lead with an open mind.
“We owe him an open mind and a chance to lead,” Clinton said.
Obama also said that he would work to ensure a smooth transition to a Trump administration and that he is rooting for his success in the position despite their differences.
“Sometimes you lose an argument, sometimes you lose an election,” Obama said. “But the path this country has taken has never been a straight line. We zig and zag.”