The Man In The Trump Tower — Episode One: A New World
No one believed it was possible. For over a year the nation watched in disbelief as the real estate mogul turned Presidential contender bullied and insulted his way closer and closer to the White House. Yesterday marked the climax of this 18 month campaign as Donald J. Trump defeated Democratic rival, and self professed Democratic Socialist Bernie Sanders in a landslide to become the 45th President of the United States.
The symbolic loss of New York for the Democrats, Trump and Bernie’s home state and the victim of multiple terrorist attacks during the course of the election season ensured that the election was all but lost for the Democrats. This was the first time that New York (29 electoral votes) voted for a Republican since Ronald Reagan’s 1984 landslide. Bernie Sanders conceded the election before the West Coast even finished voting, when it became apparent that the key swing states of Ohio, Florida and Illinois all voted for Trump.
Trump promised his supporters an “era of unprecedented winning that would make America so great it would hurt” during his victory rally in Central Park yesterday. He also pledged that Americans would no longer have to be “embarrassed by weak leadership or have to apologize for being Americans ever again.”
Surprisingly, given the toxic nature of the campaign which saw one candidate die and another get arrested on felony charges, he also offered his opponents an olive branch, striking a conciliatory tone. He promised Democrats and mainstream Republicans threatening to splinter to a third party that he would create a broad “national coalition” to “look into what the Hell is going on.” This was the only part of his speech met by boos from the audience.
Yesterday’s election results, while not surprising, close the most contentious general election in America’s history since the Civil War. The arrest of Hillary Clinton in February for felony charges pertaining to her use of a private email server was the first of many twists in the campaign, leaving the field wide open for Bernie Sanders to clinch the nomination on Super Tuesday.
Shortly after Super Tuesday, the Republicans were thrown into disarray as establishment favorite Jeb Bush suffered a heart attack after a particularly nasty verbal assault from Donald Trump and Ben Carson slipped into a coma while giving a speech (it took 30 minutes for attendees to notice that Carson was immobile). Trump’s biggest rival, Ted Cruz, eventually dropped out of the race when all his campaign staff quit citing that they couldn’t stand working for him anymore.
Trump’s rivals within the GOP failed to physically lock Trump out of the Republican National Convention (RNC) and deny him the nomination in a last bid attempt to salvage the party. An armed militia bussed in from Oregon stormed the RNC headquarters ensuring Trump’s presence and securing him the nomination.
The general election period was marred with tragic events that tilted the field heavily for Trump. A series of “lone-wolf” terrorist attacks and anti-police riots rocked America’s cities stoking the ranks of pro-Trump neighborhood militias tasked with keeping order after the police withdrew from the streets. Trump also capitalized from a stock market crash, advancing a radical tax plan that vilified wall street and hedge fund managers and threatened to nationalize their firms if they don’t stop “funneling money to China.”
Finally, an independent run by former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg, founder of the eponymous media company splintered the Democratic vote as most of the Republican base was not sold on voting for a different “New York Values” kinda guy.
Just eight months ago it felt unthinkable that Donald Trump would win the general election, his divisive rhetoric, knee-jerk “solutions” to crises were laughed off as the ramblings of a show man appealing to a marginalized and diminished segment of society. The series of unfortunate events that led to last night’s results are too many to recount in a single article but ensured that the unthinkable happened.
It is perhaps telling of the extent of the shock felt around the world that the only leaders to call Donald Trump and congratulate him were Vladimir Putin of Russia and Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe who said that Trump “reminded [him] of [his] younger self.”
The only thing certain is that uncertain times lie ahead…
This is the first part in a series of “news articles” set in a dystopian future in which Donald Trump wins the White House. You can read Episode Two here.
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