What We’re Following
How It Happened: Donald Trump’s upset victory over Hillary Clinton took many Americans—especially pollsters—thoroughly by surprise. It’s not clear yet why they were wrong, but a few key trends have emerged. Trump’s core support was thought to come from the white working class, and these voters turned out with tremendous enthusiasm. But about half of upper-middle-class voters also supported him, probably due to their dissatisfaction with the Affordable Care Act. Evangelicals also supported Trump overwhelmingly, likely because of his restrictive stance on abortion. All in all, Election Day had notable parallels with this summer’s Brexit vote in the U.K., both in terms of its causes—such as voters’ reactions against globalization and immigration—and its potential consequences.
What Are The Consequences? The immediate reaction from the stock market wasn’t great: The Dow dropped almost 800 points when Trump’s election was announced. But U.S. markets recovered by the end of the day. More long-term repercussions will likely be felt by poor Americans, who would lose access to health care and other social services if Trump’s planned cuts to taxes and government spending are carried out. Parents may see more opportunities to send kids to the schools of their choice—though many students won’t have the chance to benefit. Meanwhile, women and young girls may be disheartened—and even endangered—by the election of a man who’s bragged so casually about sexual assault. On an international scale, it’s not clear what will happen next, but Trump’s opposition to free trade and U.S. alliances could cause a major upset. And on a planetary scale, his rejection of policies and treaties intended to mitigate climate change could have a devastating effect.