Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump joined voters across the United States yesterday in casting ballots for president in an election that brings a long and bitter campaign to a close.
Clinton started her day by casting her vote in Chappaqua, New York, where she and her husband, former president Bill Clinton, have lived since he left office in 2001.
“I know the responsibility that goes with this,” she said as she greeted people at the polling station. “So many people are counting on the outcome of this election and what it means for our country, and I’ll do the best I can if I’m fortunate enough to win today.”
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has cast his ballot in New York City at the polling station nearest his home in Trump Tower.
The candidate arrived with his wife Melania, who also cast a ballot.
“Everything’s very good,” he said when asked what he had heard about early returns.
When asked by reporters if he would accept unfavourable election results, Trump responded: “We’ll see what happens,” according to reporter Michael Finnegan of the Los Angeles Times.
Trump was echoing remarks made in the third presidential debate, when the moderator asked if he would honour the election results. Trump replied that he would keep people in suspense.
Another reporter asked yesterday which candidate he voted for. Trump responded by saying that it had been a “tough decision”.
People shouted “loser” and booed the candidate from behind a barrier set up by police on the street.
Some also shouted, “Go, Donald” and gave him a thumbs up.
At a polling station in Williamsburg, a neighbourhood in New York City’s Brooklyn borough, Jasmin Stein said she felt somewhat tired of the divisive campaign, but was glad that the election cast a spotlight on underlying anxieties among the people of the US.
Both campaigns kept up the pressure until the end.
Clinton’s campaign ticked down the minutes until the start of the polls with calls to vote and to “build bridges, not walls”, a dig at Trump’s promise to build a wall along the US border with Mexico to keep out illegal immigrants.
Trump highlighted his final round of campaign stops, saying on Twitter: “Today we are going to win the great state of MICHIGAN and we are going to WIN back the White House!”
Clinton is favoured to win based on nearly all surveys of likely voters.
But the race – marked by ugly rhetoric and personal attacks – has been surprisingly close.
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