Advertisement
  1. Florida Politics

Watch: Donald Trump's acceptance speech after winning 2016 presidential election

President-elect Donald Trump gives his acceptance speech during his election night rally, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016, in New York. [Associated Press]
President-elect Donald Trump gives his acceptance speech during his election night rally, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016, in New York. [Associated Press]
Published Nov. 9, 2016

NEW YORK — It was a Donald Trump that many Americans had never seen.

Shortly after 2:45 a.m. Wednesday, just after he was anointed president-elect, Trump strode on stage to an adoring crowd, soaking in his surprising, pollster-defying victory.

Instead of lashing out, as he did countless times on the campaign trail, Trump praised his Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, lauded the nation's ethnic diversity, and promised to represent all people.

"Hillary has worked very long and very hard over a long period of time and we owe her a major debt of gratitude for her service to our country," Trump said. "I mean that very seriously. Now it is time for America to bind the wounds of division ... I say it is time for us to come together as one united people."

Just minutes earlier, the crowd had been reprising a signature chant of the campaign targeting the Democratic nominee, "Lock her up!"

And Trump had, in recent weeks, even said he would appoint a special prosecutor and seek to put her in jail for her use of a private email server while secretary of state.

But in the hours after Clinton's concession, a different Trump showed up — at least for this moment.

He was conciliatory, soft-spoken, gracious. There was no mention of building a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border, or of banning Muslims, or of mass deportations of illegal immigrants.

Instead, it was Trump who was victorious, capping one of the most improbable presidential runs in U.S. history.

Standing before a row of American flags, appearing in front of hundreds of people wearing Make America Great Again Hats, Trump smiled and waved, clapping along with the crowd. He was accompanied by his wife, Melania, a former model who was born in Slovenia and became a U.S. citizen in 2006.

Trump thanked many of his high-profile supporters, such as New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani. He brought Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus onto the stage, declared him a "star," and handed over the microphone for a few seconds.

Supporters hugged each other, waved Trump signs over their heads and erupted in cheers after the race was officially called. Trump was introduced by his running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, who told the crowd that "This is a historic night. The American people have spoken and the American people have elected their new champion."

Trump, after promising the heal the nation and rebuild the economy, teased the audience that he would seek to serve "maybe even eight years," a suggestion that he would run for reelection. He made grandiose promises, saying "every single American" will be able to prosper.

"We must," he said, "reclaim our country's destiny."

It was a triumphal moment for the man who was raised in Queens, and whose father, the developer Fred Trump, had warned him about the difficulty of making it in Manhattan. Yet the son made his mark, built Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue, and plotted his presidential bid there.

The crowd had waited for hours for Trump's arrival.

At 1:30 a.m., a Fox News reporter said on the broadcast playing on a big screen that House Speaker Paul Ryan reached out to Trump. The crowd did not react. At 2 a.m., the crowd booed as they watched on television screens as Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta said there would be no concession speech until all the votes were counted.

Carol Minor, 70, of Hemet, Calif., sat contentedly against a wall in the back of the ballroom. "I really felt in my heart that he was going to win," she said.

Sajid Tarar, a Muslim man who spoke on behalf of Trump at the GOP convention. said he has been a nervous wreck lately, and had not slept for three days.

"There was no doubt in my mind this was an election against the system," said Tarar, dressed in a suit and a bow tie.

ALSO IN THIS SECTION

  1. Kerry Kriseman, right, beside husband Mayor Rick Kriseman. Kerry Kriseman announced Friday she has cancer. [SCOTT KEELER  |  Times]
    Kerry Kriseman announced the news Friday on Facebook. She said the prognosis is good.
  2. Florida Rep. Ben Diamond, D-St. Petersburg, joins other environmentalists at the Sierra Club Friday to ask Gov. Ron DeSantis to dedicate at least $300 million to land conservation. [Caitlin Johnston]
    A bill in the Senate proposes dedicating $100 million to conservation efforts, but activists want the state to spend triple that amount.
  3. The walkable waterfront hamlet of Apalachicola, founded in 1831 on Apalachicola Bay, is shrouded in overcast on Tuesday. The town is home to oyster boats and shrimp boats which make their daily pilgrimages into the seafood-rich bay. [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD  |  Times]
    Florida filed the lawsuit against Georgia in 2013, though battles about water in the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint river system date to the 1990s.
  4. At the request of a state lawmaker, Citizens Property Insurance Co.’s board is again bringing in an outside evaluator to help the insurer decide if and how to cull its policyholder base. Pictured is  Sen. Jeff Brandes (R-St. Petersburg) (left) and Barry Gilway, CEO of Citizens. [Courtesy of Sen. Jeff Brandes and Citizens Property Insurance Co.]
    At the request of St. Petersburg Sen. Jeff Brandes, the insurer will look for ways to shrink.
  5. Blackwater River Correctional Facility. [Florida Department of Corrections]
    An audit spells out how short-term savings, realized between 2011 and 2014, are now costing taxpayers millions and leading to settlements from successful class-action lawsuits on behalf of inmates.
  6. Yuma, the Florida panther cub, explores his new enclosure at the Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park in 2014. The young panther will live out his days at the park after being rescued in January 2014 from the wild near Naples at about one-week of age. He had been abandoned. Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park had a ceremony Thursday morning with a couple speeches explaining Yuma's circumstances which were followed by a brief countdown for the opening of a gate allowing Yuma to enter his new enclosure. [DAMASKE, JIM   |  Tampa Bay Times]
    It would “basically be a disaster for the panther,” a federal biologist wrote in assessment.
  7. A trial court ruling barring two women from entering an Orlando strip club without a man has caused a constitutional chain reaction. Miami Beach argues that local human rights ordinances are under attack, and the city is leading an effort to overturn the ruling. [STEVEN JOHNSON | Miami Herald]
    On Thursday, Miami Beach led a coalition of 21 municipalities, including Tampa, Pinellas County and Dunedin, in filing a brief urging the overturn of a May decision voiding local protections of civil...
  8. This Feb. 19 photo shows a makeshift memorial outside Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where 17 students and faculty were killed in a mass shooting in Parkland. [AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File]
    The grand jury said districts are creating “unnecessary chaos” and have become “experts at data manipulation.”
  9. Council member Ed Montanari, left, was elected St. Petersburg City Council chair for 2020. Council member Gina Driscoll was voted vice-chair. [Times (2019)]
    The chairman guides the council through meetings and generally speak last on issues.
  10. Methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia sit along side the stolen DeWalt power tool and phony store receipt as evidence is collected on the hood of the car after as two men are arrested at the Home Depot at 10151 Bloomingdale Ave, in Riverview, on Tuesday, June 26, 2019. [DIRK SHADD  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    A Times report shows Hillsborough deputies struggle to stomp out tool theft networks tied to drugs.
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement