Republican Donald Trump won Tuesday’s presidential election, taking back the White House for his party after eight years of Democratic control, U.S. media reported.
The result of the initially tight race is likely to send a shockwave to U.S. allies and trading partners, given the president-elect’s controversial remarks about alliances, trade and immigration.
Trump beat Democrat Hillary Clinton after showing strength in many of the key battleground states such as Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania and North Carolina that allowed him to reach the 270 Electoral College votes required to win the presidency.
“I pledge to every citizen that I will be president for all Americans,” Trump said in his acceptance speech in New York.
Trump, 70, a New York real estate mogul, will be sworn in as the 45th U.S. president on Jan. 20, 2017, succeeding Democrat President Barack Obama.
Trump’s running mate Indiana Gov. Mike Pence will be vice president.
During his campaign and presidential debates with Clinton, Trump has suggested that if elected, the United States might curtail military support to Japan, South Korea and other allies unless they contribute more to deployment costs for the U.S. military.
In contrast, Clinton, a former secretary of state, underscored a commitment to the defense of U.S. allies, stressing that Washington has maintained peace through its alliances.
At a campaign rally early Tuesday in Michigan, Trump slammed as a “disaster” the North American Free Trade Agreement with Canada and Mexico, a bilateral FTA with South Korea and the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade deal.
“A Trump administration will renegotiate NAFTA and if we don’t get the deal we want, we will terminate NAFTA,” he said, referring to his “America First” slogan.
“We will also immediately stop the job-killing Trans-Pacific Partnership, which Hillary Clinton called the ‘gold standard’,” he said. The United States led negotiation for the TPP, signed in February with Japan and 10 other Pacific countries.
During the campaign, Trump also accused Clinton - who is also a former senator from New York and first lady - of being “the most corrupt person ever to seek the office of the presidency.”
Citing Sunday’s announcement by the Federal Bureau of Investigation that its review of newly discovered e-mails found no evidence warranting charges over Clinton’s handling of classified information as secretary of state, Trump claimed his contender is protected by a “totally rigged system.”
The latest FBI inquiry reignited controversy over Clinton’s use of a private e-mail server while she was Obama’s top diplomat from 2009 to 2013.
On Oct. 8, Trump’s campaign was hit by the disclosure by The Washington Post of a 2005 recording of him bragging about groping women. He drew further criticism as he doubled down on the claim that the presidential election was being “rigged” against him and refused to say whether he would accept the outcome if he lost.
Clinton’s solid lead narrowed sharply after FBI Director James Comey said Oct. 28 that his organization was resuming its inquiry into Clinton-related e-mails, allowing Trump to step up his attacks on her credibility and trustworthiness.