Election Day: America Chooses Between Clinton And Trump

    /    Nov 8, 2016   /     World  /    0 Comments  /    252 Views

Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump face voters today, as millions of Americans turn out on Election Day to pick the next U.S. president and end a bruising campaign that polls said favored Clinton.

In a battle centered largely on the character of the candidates, Clinton, 69, a former secretary of state and first lady, and Trump, 70, a New York businessman, made their final, fervent appeals to supporters late on Monday to turn out the vote.

A Reuters/Ipsos States of the Nation poll gave Clinton a 90 percent chance of defeating Trump and said she was on track to win 303 electoral college votes out of 270 needed, to Trump’s 235.

Clinton arrived to cast her ballot at an elementary school in her hometown of Chappaqua, New York, on Tuesday morning.

Trump, who planned to vote later in Manhattan, began Election Day with a ritual call to the “Fox & Friends” morning news show. “I’m a little bit superstitious,” he said. “I’ve won many primaries speaking to you first in the morning.

Eyes on Florida, North Carolina

An early indicator of the strength of each candidate could come in North Carolina and Florida, two must-win states for Trump that have been the subject of frantic last-minute efforts by both the Republican and Democratic campaigns.

Races in both those states were shifting from favoring Clinton to being too close to call.

A strong vote for Clinton could jeopardize Republican control of the U.S. Senate, as voters choose 34 senators of the 100-member chamber. Democrats needed a net gain of five seats to win control. The 435-seat House of Representatives was expected, however, to remain in Republican hands.

Clinton has vowed to largely continue the policies of Democrat Obama, and Trump, who has never held public office and has positioned himself as a change agent. Majorities of voters have viewed both candidates unfavorably.

The long-running U.S. election campaign has been one of the most negative in American history, with each candidate accusing the other of lacking the character and judgment to be president.

Trump, a former reality TV star, reveled in the drama and seized the spotlight time and again with provocative comments about Muslims and women, attacks against the Republican establishment and bellicose appeals to build a wall along the U.S. southern border with Mexico to stem illegal immigration.

But the spotlight was not always kind to Trump. The release of a 2005 video in which he boasted about groping women damaged his campaign and left him on the defensive for critical weeks.

Clinton, a former U.S. senator with a penchant for secrecy, sustained damaging blows from her handling of classified information as the country’s top diplomat. Comey shook up the race and slowed her momentum with an Oct. 28 announcement the agency was reviewing newly discovered emails that might pertain to her email practices.

On Sunday, Comey told Congress that investigators had found no reason to change their July finding that there was no criminal wrongdoing in Clinton’s use of the server.

(Additional reporting by Emily Stephenson and Amanda Becker traveling with the candidates; Editing by Peter Cooney and Bill Tarrant)

Reuters

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