Donald Trump secures Oval Office after close presidential race

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By Nicholas Salinas

After securing key battleground states such as Ohio, Florida, North Carolina and Pennsylvania, Republican presidential nominee Donald J. Trump pulled ahead to be the first candidate to secure more than 269 electoral votes. Called at 11:33 p.m. by the Associated Press, Trump was named the 45th President-elect of the United States of America.

Conceding to the election, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called Trump later that night to congratulate Trump on his victory. While Trump did win the electoral vote with 279 electoral votes to Clinton’s 228 electoral votes, Clinton led the popular vote over Trump by 336,000 votes.

According to the United States Election Project, the national voter turnout rate is 56.9 percent. USEP estimates that out of the 231,556,622 eligible voters, 131,741,500 voted either on Election Day or mailed their ballot online. With 55 electoral votes, an estimated 11.5 million Californians voted out of the 25.2 million eligible voters.

The Republican party also won control of the Senate with 51 seats to the Democrat’s 48 seats as well as the House with Republicans leading 239 to 192 in seat hold. Trump has the power to nominate a new Supreme Court Justice for the U.S. Senate to approve.

California’s Attorney General Kamala Harris was also voted as California’s Senator-elect to succeed Barbara Boxer’s 24-year term in office. Harris will serve as the nation’s second African-American woman on the U.S. Senate.

Approved state ballot measures include a $2 cigarette tax, background checks for ammunition purchases, bilingual education programs in public school and the legalization of marijuana. The repeal of the death penalty and the plastic bag tax did not pass on the state ballot.

Los Angeles’ ballot Measure M, the half-cent hike on the sales tax countywide, was passed. Measure M plans to expand the Metro Light Rail system and bring a subway system to Westwood.

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