Clinton, Obama urge disappointed backers to reconcile themselves to Trump’s win - Washingtonpost
Both Hillary Clinton and President Obama urged their backers Wednesday to accept President-elect Donald Trump’s victory and support his transition into power, as Democrats prepare to hand over control of the White House for the first time in eight years.
The calls for a national political reconciliation underscored the seismic political realignment now underway in Washington after Clinton’s crushing loss to the New York businessman. Both the president and his former Secretary of State told their supporters not to despair as Republicans rejoiced at the idea that they will control both the legislative and executive branch in two and-a-half months.
Clinton said her loss exposed the nation’s deep and difficult divisions, but she urged her backers to give him “a chance to lead.”
“I know how disappointed you feel because I feel it, too,” said Clinton, less than 24 hours after calling the president-elect to concede after his history-shaping run that defied pollsters and galvanized legions of aggrieved voters in a loud repudiation of the status quo. “This is painful, and it will be for a long time.”
Clinton, who was misty-eyed at times but composed throughout her remarks, said the long and bitter campaign against Trump showed that “our nation is more deeply divided that we thought.”
But she told her backers: “We owe him an open mind and the chance to lead.”
Clinton and her allies are now left to sort out how Trump upended her once-clear path to become America’s first female president. Clinton called Trump to concede as the results were clear.
Minutes after Clinton finished speaking, President Obama addressed reporters in the Rose Garden with Vice President Biden by his side, as more than a hundred White House staffers stood off to the side. Several of the aides were visibly emotional, with at least one crying before he began speaking.
“Now, everybody is sad when their side loses an election, but the day after we have to remember that we’re actually all on one team. This is an intramural scrimmage,” Obama said, vowing to work to ensure a smooth transition for the president-elect.
The president, who has invited Trump to the White House Thursday, added he was “heartened” by the tone of his victory speech and their private phone call, which took place around 3:30 am Wednesday.
“That’s what the country needs -- a sense of unity, a sense of inclusion, a respect for our institutions, our way of life, rule of law, and respect for each other.”
Trump said that under his administration, “America will no longer settle for anything less than the best.” And he promised foreign countries that “while we will always put America’s interests first, we will deal fairly with everyone,” adding: “We will seek common ground, not hostility.”
World leaders congratulated Trump even as they grappled with the repercussions of his win. Britain, Germany and other U.S. allies stressed their close bonds with Washington. Russia, meanwhile, was quick to make overtures for better ties — something Trump encouraged as he campaigned.
Trump’s promise to “Make America Great Again” inspired millions of Americans alienated by the forces of globalization and multiculturalism and deeply frustrated with the inability of Washington to address their needs. - Read More