Bummer

A reflection on the 2016 presidential election

Art by Mariah Crabb

Art by Mariah Crabb

The reality television show that was the 2016 presidential election is now over, and the American people have elected Donald J. Trump to be our commander-in-chief, along with Mike Pence as VP. For 15 percent of those who voted, it was their first time casting a ballot in a presidential election. I was a part of that 15 percent, and voting was something I had been looking forward to for many years. I remember the way my family felt during 2008, and could not wait to have that same feeling of excitement over a presidential candidate. Sadly, I did not feel that same magic during this cycle.

I did feel it initially during the primaries when I voted for Bernie Sanders. It was exhilarating to have a candidate I was so passionate about. When the Wisconsin primary grew near I requested my absentee ballot. When it arrived in the mail, I was so excited to cast my first ever vote, and I was glad that I helped my favorite candidate win my home state.

I remember the way my family felt during 2008, and could not wait to have that same feeling of excitement over a presidential candidate.

As the Democratic primaries drew to an end, I had to come to terms that Bernie would not be my party’s nominee; it would instead be Hillary Clinton after the party elites rigged the primaries in her favor. She may not have been my initial choice to be the president, but I will always back the nominee of my party, as party unity is necessary to win elections.

Election Day finally came, and the polls were indicating a good night for Democrats. Alas, the Democrats had an awful night, and I watched as many states went to Trump. I finally understand what he meant when he said there’d be “so much winning that you may even get tired of winning.”

For me, the biggest surprise of the election was how wrong the polls were. Throughout the election cycle, many media outlets gave the edge to Clinton, especially by electoral victory. I still wonder exactly what the polls got wrong.

As disappointed as I am in the results, I am still optimistic about the future. This is America; we can overcome anything so long as we are a nation united.