Trump's Victory As It Happened: Christian Today's Live Blog


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Thank you for joining this blog. Further coverage and reaction will continue throughout the day on the Christian Today website. 

There will be analysis of what happened and commentary from across the religious spectrum on what this means for the US and the rest of the world.

That just leaves me to summarise what we have seen. 

The most significant political event in decades has the potential to have explosive consequences for years to come. Trump won on a tidal wave of anti-establishment voting that demanded change. The outsider triumphed. A property tycoon with zero political experience is now the most powerful man in the world. His divisive and popularist campaign ended in victory, largely carried by a surge in support from white evangelical men. 

What that means and what that will look like I leave to my colleagues. 


Donald Trump has declared his victory as President of the United States of America. Here is what he said: 

"I have just received a call from Secretary Clinton. She congratulated us on our victory and I congratulated her on a very hard fought campaign.

"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. 

It is time for us to come together as one united people. I pledge to every citizen in our great land that I will be a president for all Americans. This is so important to me.

"For those who have chosen not to support me, I am reaching out to you for your guidance and your help so we can work together."

He said: "Ours was not a campaign but rather but an incredible movement made up of millions of hard working men and women who love their country and want a better future for them and their families."

He promised every American would have the opportunity to realise their potential: "The forgotten men and women will be forgotten no longer."

"We will also finally take care of our great veterans who have been so loyal," he said. 

Trump declared: "We have a great economic plan. We will double our growth and at the same time we will get along with every nation willing to get along with us.

"No dream is too big," he said to cheers.

He continued: "I want to tell the world community while we will put America's interests first we will deal fairly with everyone.

"While the campaign is over our work is really just beginning." 


The Clinton campaign's decision to not say anything further is not going down well. This is David Robertson from the Scottish Free Church.


We are expecting to hear from Donald Trump very shortly. We will bring you the highlights of what he says.


Clinton fans told to go home. "We're not going to have anything more to say tonight," says campaign chair John Podesta. He says too many states are too close to call. "She is not done yet."

Very interesting after Clinton repeatedly attacked Trump's refusal to say whether he would accept the result if he lost.


Paul Harcourt, the national leader of New Wine, gives his thoughts moments ago.


It was not only evangelicals that proved decisive.


So we are looking like a President Trump with a Republican-controlled House. This could prove just be as problematic for both sides as the last years have been for President Barack Obama with a Republican House.


An astonishing, pulsating and unprecedented night hits a lull as we wait for the last few results. 

It seems all but certain that we will have a President Donald Trump.


Tony Campolo, the author, pastor and former spiritual adviser to President Bill Clinton, gives his verdict to Christian Today. Here is what the long-term critic of Trump told us: "The triumph of Donald Trump may signal "the last hurrah" of white male evangelicals in America, or it may mean that their influence is once again on the rise. We will have to wait and see.

"But there is no question that his victory was largely due to their support. His victory is likely to get evangelicals to do some soul searching as to who they are, and why they were swept up in supporting a man whose rhetoric played upon fear of immigrants, fear of Muslims, an anti-scientific disbelief in global warming, overt racism and sexist attitudes that are contrary to scripture."


This election has given the highest evangelical turnout in decades, according to Fox News.




This was John Piper as counting began.


Nevada called for Clinton but it is too little too late. With just six electoral college votes it does not carry the weight she needs at this late stage to reach the magic 270.

All eyes on Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and New Hampshire, all of which Trump now leads.


And this is what he had to offer before the results came through.


This is from Matt Smethurst, managing editor of The Gospel Coalition.


Shock abounds at the extent to which Christians voted for Trump. As the campaign unfolded we watched senior evangelical leaders wrestle over whether to stick with their traditional home in the Republican party. 

As the reflection begin I highly recommend this from Andy Walton: Has The 2016 Election Sounded The Death Knell Of The Religious Right?


It is very easy for Donald Trump now. 

New Hampshire and Michigan key. And Trump is leading in both. Here are the religious breakdowns for these two states. Neither are as heavily Christian / evangelical as Iowa but they are both still looking at a Trump presidency.

Pew Research Center
Pew Research Center


Trump has won Iowa. With just six seats it does not have the clout of Florida's 29 votes but it is significant. Trump lost the primary here earlier in the year but has backed him now. 

Here is the religious breakdown of this battleground.

Pew Research Center


Donald Trump wins Florida. 

Fox News has called Wisconsin for Trump. If its 10 votes go to the Republican this is looking more and more like a victory for the New York billionaire.


She voted Democrat. In case you couldn't tell.


North Carolina is a Trump victory. Here is the religious breakdown of this battleground. With 77 per cent of the population Christian and 35 per cent evangelical, this is a powerful bloc.

Pew Research Center



A response from Obama's faith adviser:


Jerry Falwell Jnr, president of the large Christian Liberty University, who has publically backed Trump spoke to the BBC moments ago. He said it was "really encouraging to see the numbers.

"I'm very optimistic about the results. It's going to go right down to the wire, definitely a nail biter."

Falwell denied Trump admitted to groping women and added:

"Evangelicals believe all people are sinners. We've all done wrong, we all need forgiveness. The Donald Trump I know has a big heart, he loves people, he loves this country.

"The evangelicals were largely supporting Trump well before the evangelical leadership was. The divide has been in the evangelical leadership, not the rank and file." 


Catholics back Trump by 51 per cent to 46 per cent for Trump.


Ohio called for Trump. 

The key bellweather has gone to the Republican with a big 12-point leader. This could be a crucial moment. Here is the religious breakdown in Ohio. 

Pew Research Center


With a number of key swing states still close to call, we will show how the religious populations may be influencing the vote.

With Florida almost certain to go for Trump here are the figures from Pew Research Center again.

Pew Research Center


Evangelicals stick by their man.


So here is where we are on the battleground states. I stress this is changing constantly.

Florida (29 votes): TRUMP lead

Pennsylvania (20 votes): CLINTON lead

Michigan (16 votes): TRUMP lead

North Carolina (15 votes): TRUMP lead

Virginia (13 votes): Neck-and-neck

Colorado (9 votes): CLINTON lead

Ohio (18 votes): TRUMP lead

Wisconsin (10 votes): TRUMP lead

Nevada (6 votes): Too-close-to-call

Iowa (6 votes): Too-close-to-call 

New Hampshire (4 votes): TRUMP lead


Another rush of polls will close at 0300 UK time. The key ones to look out for are Nevada and Iowa - crucial battlegrounds.


"The White Evangelical vote" has become the most repeated refrain in this election.


Remember that as well as the Presidential election, Americans will also vote for the House of Representatives tonight. Exit polls have predicted the Republicans will retain their control of the House.

So if Hillary wins, which she is still (just) set to do, we will have a Democrat President with a Republican-controlled House. 

But if Trump wins, he is so unpopular with the Republican hierarchy that he could face tough battles against his own party to pass legislation.


Nails are gradually being bitten down. Here is Joel Osteen, televangelist and senior pastor of Lakewood Church.


Ohio is a bellweather state - it has picked the winner at every election apart from 1944 and 1960.

And guess's leaning towards Donald Trump. It's still too close to call but Democrats are getting very very anxious.


This has frequently been described as the most divisive campaign in living memory. What will happen next? Here is Christian Today's Andy Walton on how Christians can help heal a divided nation


It's neck and neck in Florida, Ohio and North Carolina, three key swing states.


Well Rachel Held Evans, it certainly is close.


Michael Wear offering his insights into Florida's figures. Seems Clinton has been abandoned by white evangelicals.


Jen Hatmaker has not been afraid of controversy in recent weeks with her backing of same sex relationships. But here she is on the US election. This has been the most divisive election in living memory.


Michael Wear was Barack Obama's faith adviser in the White House. So he should know a thing or two about the future of religion in America.


From one former rival to another.


UPDATE: Hillary Clinton has 68 electoral college votes. Donald Trump has 66.


With all the talk about Florida, here is the religious breakdown of that vital state. With 24 per cent, there are more evangelicals than Pennsylvania. This voting bloc largely backs Trump but there is also a higher proportion of religious "nones" - who tend to vote Clinton.


Meanwhile Trump is very slightly in the lead in Florida. 61 per cent of precincts in with Trump ahead on 49 per cent versus Clinton on 48 per cent.


Pennsylvania, a key swing state, has an exit poll that puts Clinton on 50 per cent and Trump on 46 per cent.

Pew Research Center has a high proportion of Christian voters (76 per cent) but a comparatively lower proportion of the all important evangelical vote (19 per cent). Has this been a factor?


Franklin Graham, son of famous evangelist Billy, has run a Decision America Tour of 50 US states over the last year. He refused to back either candidate and said he wanted Christians to pray first and foremost. He insisted he was "not telling anyone who to vote for", adding: "God can do that." 

But earlier today he gave his strongest hint yet who he is voting for.

Here is what he said:

"You may have to hold your nose and vote... I have people that say, 'Well I don't like Donald Trump, I don't like what he says.' Well I don't like what he said either, I promise I don't like it. But those are things that he said 11 years ago, not something that he said today. I think Donald Trump has changed. I think God is working on his heart and in his life. But people have to make up their own mind."


Have a look at the #PrayForAmerica which you can expect to be live and active through the night. Here is Zavi Zacharias from RZIM.


Florida is key.With only 28 per cent of votes left to count it is neck and neck! 


Most states are fairly easy to predict as they have gone the same way each election in recent years. But here are eleven swing states we will be focusing on tonight:

Florida (29 votes)

Pennsylvania (20 votes)

Michigan (16 votes)

North Carolina (15 votes)

Virginia (13 votes)

Colorado (9 votes)

Ohio (18 votes)

Wisconsin (10 votes)

Nevada (6 votes)

Iowa (6 votes)

New Hampshire (4 votes) 


If you're a US Election novice here are some of the key points to help you understand how the night works.

The system is an Electoral College. Each US state holds a certain number of votes. The larger the population, the higher the number votes the state has. So California, the biggest state in terms of population, has 55 votes. Meanwhile Montana, Vermont, Alaska and a number of others have just 3 votes.

There are 538 votes in total. The magic number is 270 for either candidate to reach the White House.


00.45 (UK time)

Good evening and welcome to the Christian Today US Election Night Live Blog!

I will be with throughout the night bring you all the updates and insights from a religious perspective. Do join in the debate on Twitter – I am on @harryfarls all night.