1) There were more closet Trump fans – millions more – than we ever could have imagined.
2) America is still a mostly conservative country (see map), despite the ultra-liberal “agendas” of the last ten years or so.
3) The third of America called “flyover country”, mostly working class, white, and “uneducated,” – and largely ignored by the urban elites of the East and West Coasts – finally realized this election cycle that a) they outnumber said liberals and b) they had both the opportunity, the collective power, and collective drive (i.e. rage) to put Trump into office.
4) On the inverse, Democrats snoozed through this election, complacent and overly confident that career politician Clinton would stand in stark contrast to boorish and “unqualified” Trump. In the end, most voters could give two shits about Clinton’s extensive (and maligned) tenure as Secretary of State, First Lady or NYS Senator, they just wanted a “Change!” candidate who recognized the struggles of the everyday person, and offered tangible (if extreme and implausible) solutions for restoring order in a country gone insane.
Clinton was just selling more of the same, and her enlistment of uber-rich celebs such as Katy Perry and Meryl Streep just made the relatively independent and isolated Trump seem even more the maverick.
5) Though, so far, over 600,000 more Americans voted for Hillary than Trump (and that number is expected to hit over 2 million once all votes are counted), the enthusiasm among minority groups and traditional Democrats was gone by the time Election Day rolled around. 88% of African Americans voted for Clinton, compared to 93 for Obama, and young voters were clearly split this time around, with 54% going Clinton, 37 Trump (60% of 18-30 year olds voted for Obama). White women surprisingly deserted Clinton, with 53% voting for Trump (to Clinton’s 43). Even Latinos, a group Trump famously insulted at the start of his campaign, defected to Camp Trump.
6) If anything, this election blurred the lines more than any other in American history. More independents voted this time around, and groups that largely voted one way historically went the other way (African Americans, women, young people). Blame it on the candidates themselves (Clinton being a “weak candidate” and “unrelatable”, Trump being “larger than life”), I just think this is the future of politics. More people will vote for the candidate they most connect to, with less regard for their own political affiliation. And overall, there will be less voter turnout. Only half the voting-eligible population cast a ballot this time.
SIDENOTE: They might wanna think about making the voting process entirely digital at some point. People are addicted to convenience, and might (BIG might) be more inclined to vote if they didn’t have to wait in line for several hours to do so.
7) If the election results proved anything, it’s that the majority of the country are over the Clintons. The Clintons have lasted longer in politics than most, but have also been tarnished by scandals of various shades, from deep blood red (Benghazi) to little blue dress. Maybe voting for Hillary felt like a giant step back for a lot of people. In any case, Chelsea Clinton is being groomed for Congress and probably a Presidential run in a few decades, so they’ll never be done, even if the public is burnt out on them at the moment.