The 2016 Presidential Election - An Analysis


The 2016 presidential election is over. Donald Trump won. He won the Electoral College vote - you know, the one that really counts. But, he fell behind Hillary in the "popular vote". As I write this Trump has about 300,000 total votes LESS than Clinton.

The total of the "popular" votes cast was 119,386,076 - Again, at the time of this writing. That means the difference was a very slight, .25% in Clinton's favor. I won't even broach the subject of potential voter fraud here.

As an aside here:

People on social media have been posting things like "dump the Electoral College" and "go with the popular vote".

This is an understandable reaction. However, there is a problem in so doing. Let's say that 120 million people vote. And, further, let's say that 61 million of the voters live in California. Further, let's say that the people in California all voted for candidate A and everyone else voted for candidate B.

California, alone, would decide who the president would be. Not the best thing for all of us who do NOT live in California.

To the Clinton supporters Hillary's losing was a shock, to say the least. By all the polling she and her supporters had every reason to expect victory. So, what happened?

Actually, several factors were at work.

Mainly, it was Hillary herself. I outlined just some of the concerns with her candidacy HERE. But, the primary reasons were the perceptions by the American people (even by many who voted for her) of her being untrustworthy, the corruption surrounding the Clinton Foundation, and the fact that her only vision seemed to be executing a 3rd term of the Obama administration.

This last item was as much of a key to the answer as anything. Yes, things like the email scandals, Benghazi, and being caught in many, many lies didn't help. But, I believe following Obama's lead was more of an issue. And, here's why.

James Carville, a campaign strategist for Bill Clinton coined a phrase: "It's the economy, stupid." For some unknown reason Hillary either forgot this or didn't feel it was still applicable to the American people today. More on this in just a minute.

Obama followed Bush II as president. Bush II suffered from both houses of Congress being under the control of Democrats. Obama inherited this advantage - for him. Obama's "signature" program, Obamacare, was passed during the first 2 years of Obama's administration. Or, when both houses of Congress were controlled by the same political party as that of the president.

Obamacare, highly touted by Obama, was unpopular from the start. This, in part, was responsible for the Republicans taking control of the House as a result of the midterm elections late in 2010. The Senate remained under control of the Democrats.

Even though almost nobody, except the author(s) of Obamacare, actually read the bill - even the Congress, there was something more insidious here. The 1,000+ page AHCA bill was followed by 20,000 pages of rules and regulations felt required to implement Obamacare. No one voted on these rules & regulations - nobody.

In a very large part, these rules & regulations led to the sharp increases in health care insurance with skyrocketing deductibles making the news today. As a result of this, scandals attributable to the Obama administration, and a faltering economy, the control of the Senate went to Republicans with the midterm elections of 2014.

Back to the "It's the economy, stupid." for a minute. The following 2 charts depict, in high level, the effects of the Obama administration on our economy.

The country, slowly but surely, was moving away from Obama's "Hope and Change" promises which never were fulfilled. I think Hillary missed the "degree of slope" on what was happening.

The national debt has nearly doubled under the leadership of Obama. Whereas this doesn't directly affect the average American, even the most financially unsophisticated of us realize this is not a desirable thing. It clearly means we are spending more than we take in. There's a "bubble" out there waiting to burst.

During Obama's terms our population has grown by over 6% while the average salary has increased 2.3% and the cost of living has increased by 14.3%. This is devastating to all but our most wealthy people. And, the situation is even worse for our minorities.

The average interest rate on simple bank accounts has been around 1% for the last 7+ years. So, for every dollar you invested in 2009 you would now have $1.09. Compare this with ammunition. For every dollar you spent on ammunition back then you would now have $1.30 in value. Remember from above the cost of living during this time has risen over 14%. The middle class and the poor have been hammered.

Further, the job market here at home is dismal. Hillary, as Secretary of State, did much to effect shipping our jobs to other countries.

During this same period the stock market has risen from around 9,000 to over 18,000. How could it have doubled when the economy overall isn't doing well? The rules and regulations applied to our businesses are so onerous that companies, rather than reinvesting their profits, are "sitting on them". The uncertainties of investment are high; so, "sitting on the money" is a safer bet. This drives up the stock price.

This lack of investment, of course, leads to fewer new jobs being created. Even worse, thanks in part to Obamacare, people's hours are being cut back to avoid greater costs associated with the mandated health care.

While this was ongoing Obama maintained a high favorability across the country.

I believe Hillary and her people assumed this high favorability was due to the American people being happy with Obama's policies and methods. Therefore, following in his footsteps seemed a viable avenue to success.

From all that I have read and witnessed, Obama is a very likeable guy. Even those who can't abide his methods or policies have found him a most likeable person - hence his continued high favorability ratings; not because of the results of his leadership. Hillary did not seem to grasp the difference between "likeable" and "effective".

Still Hillary got 50% of the votes. Consider: 50% of the American people pay no federal income tax. Not considering Social Security which was earned, a full one-third of us are receiving some form of government financial assistance. Is it reasonable to assume that these Americans can take the risk of someone becoming president who would potentially lessen monies available to them from the government?

Trump, during his campaign, offered roughly this: "Take a chance on me; what have you got to lose?" Well, if you absolutely depend on the government for feeding your family, possibly quite a lot.

Hillary had really large groups that were on her side, besides the DNC - the media and big businesses.

The big businesses had contributed large sums of money to her campaign and were expecting large returns on their investment.

It is widely known that the media, in general, is populated by the politically progressive. "Dividing", as explained in this article, may work well for gaining control - sometimes. But, NOT when there is an opposing force striving to "unite".

The media, along with Hillary herself, continued attacks against Trump and his supporters with calls of racism, false editing of news to fit their narrative, and the like. For but 2 small examples, Click Here and Click Here. Not too smooth a move to gain support from outside one's base; i.e., those who favored rump (the other 50% of the voters).

Worse, perhaps, is that such name calling is inaccurate - the most kind word I could use here.

It is easily argued that being President of the United States of America is the hardest management job there is. Obama had not one single management job prior to becoming president. Neither, has Hillary - except for being Secretary of State. Her record on this job is fairly evident. These are mistakes that only untrained, first-time managers make.

As an overall perception, Hillary acts as though she is above the law. This was especially apparent during the email scandal hearings. She and Obama seem to feel that the US Constitution is but a set of guidelines and NOT the "Law of the Land".

Another mistake Hillary made was pandering to women. The vast number of women with who I've spoken have responded with the following, conceptual reply:

"I don't need anyone in politics helping me. I can fend for myself. Statements such as Hillary has made are condescending at best. She is no role model for me and certainly not for any daughter I may have."

One of the biggest mistakes Hillary made during the campaign seems to have been listening to only those who told her what she wanted to hear. She, her entire campaign staff, AND her supportive media missed what was really going on with the American people - OR, "It's the economy, stupid."

Actually, I feel this very short video clip explains why Americans want a change in leadership.

Aside from Hillary Clinton's performance, what did Trump do right?

First, he has extensive management experience. And, as such, he is aware of a process that I term "Know what you don't know and live by it!"

Trump is well versed in things financial and managing large enterprises. What he did not bring to the party was a true understanding of what the average American citizen and small business face on a day-to-day basis.

So, for a 2 year period prior to the election Trump criss crossed the country seeking information and advice from ordinary, working Americans. He learned what issues they faced, what feelings about government they maintained, and how best he could help the average American. He built his campaign around that information.

Of course he has said some outrageous things. But, it kept him in the news and enabled him to run a successful presidential run with a fraction of the money Hillary spent.

The important fact, independent of what the media and Hillary may have led you to believe, is that Trump has NEVER said anything other than he would be our president for very citizen of our great Nation; you can apply any adjective you wish to the word "citizen".

We'll just have to wait and see how things turn out.