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Donald Trump has shocked the world by being elected as the 45th President of the United States.
Despite polls showing that Democratic challenger Hillary Clinton was ahead nationally and in many of the key battleground states, Trump’s anti-establishment message resonated with voters across the country. They delivered him a close, but definitive, victory in Wednesday’s early hours.
Throughout his contentious and volatile campaign, Trump has consistently stoked racial tensions, promising to build a wall along the country’s border with Mexico to discourage illegal immigrants and saying that Muslims should be banned from entering the country. Trump has also made headlines for his crude and distasteful comments about women. In October, a 2005 tape surfaced in which he boasted about sexually assaulting women, saying, “When you’re a star, they let you do it.” Since then, dozens of women have come forward with accusations of sexual assault.
Trump’s untraditional rhetoric has caused many Republican stalwarts to disavow him. In Colorado, GOP Sen. Cory Gardner and Rep. Mike Coffman, who secured reelection last night over Democratic nominee Morgan Carroll, both called for Trump to drop out of the race. Neither Gardner nor Coffman said they would vote for Trump as president.
But none of that seemed to matter on Tuesday night, as even states that Clinton boasted as parts of her “firewall” fell to Trump in the election’s late hours. Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, both of which have gone Democratic since the 1980s, were the final states to secure a Trump victory, although the Republican nominee won nearly ever battleground, including Florida, Ohio, and North Carolina.
Trump appeared at the Hilton Hotel in New York City around 3 a.m. ET to thank supports. In his victory speech, he promised to be a president for all Americans.
“The forgotten men and women of our country will be forgotten no longer,” Trump told supporters at his victory rally New York City. “Now it’s time for America to bind the wounds of division. It is time for us to come together as one united people. It’s time.”
Hillary Clinton, who soundly won Colorado’s nine electoral votes, didn’t greet supporters at her planned rally at the Javits Center in Manhattan. Instead, she appeared alongside her family and vice presidential candidate Tim Kaine on Wednesday, saying that the nation is “more divided than we thought,” and saying Americans need to have an open mind and give Trump a chance to lead.
Locally, Colorado stayed true to its purple hue. Democrat Michael Bennet was reelected as U.S. Senator with almost 50 percent of the vote. Coffman was able to fend of a strong challenge by Morgan Carroll in the changing 6th Congressional District, raking in nearly 52 percent of vote. Democrats Diana DeGette (D-1), Jared Polis (D-2), and Ed Perlmutter (D-7) were unsurprisingly reelected, while Republicans Scott Tipton (D-3), Ken Buck (D-4) and Doug Lamborn (D-5) also secured victories.
Some of the most interesting returns centered on Colorado’s ballot measures. Some of the local ballot questions were still up in the air on Wednesday morning. But we’ll run down the statewide initiatives here:
- Amendment 69, which would have created ColoradoCare, a state-run healthcare system, was easily defeated early in the night with almost 80 percent of the vote.
- Amendment 70 passed, although it was close. This amendment will incrementally increase the minimum wage to $12 an hour by 2020.
- Our very meta Amendment 71—the constitutional amendment that will make it harder to amend the constitution—was passed with almost 57 percent of the vote.
- Cigarette taxes will not increase to $2.59 per pack. Amendment 72 failed with a split vote.
- Proposition 106, medical aid in dying, soundly passed with almost 65 percent of the vote.
- And Colorado’s elections will look a lot different in coming years. Proposition 107, which reinstates the presidential primary, passed with 64 percent support. Unaffiliated voters will likely get a chance to vote in the newly created primary, as Proposition 108 is looking to pass, as well.
- Ballot issue 4B easily passed. The .1 percent sales tax, which funds the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District, will continue until 2030.
- Voters also passed Ballot issues 3A and 3B, a $628 million tax package that will help build new schools and improve the cooling systems in existing Denver Public Schools.
Colorado’s state legislature will remain split after Tuesday night, even after both the House and the Senate were touted as two of the biggest battleground chambers in the country. While final results are still being tallied, it appears that Democrats will retain control of the House with a 37-28 advantage, while Republicans will have a one-seat lead in the Senate.