Hillary Clinton told supporters today that they owed Donald Trump "an open mind and a chance to lead", urging acceptance of the celebrity businessman's stunning win after a campaign that appeared poised until Election Day to make her the first woman elected USA president.
President-elect Donald Trump told cheering supporters at his campaign rally in the early hours of Wednesday that Americans must now "bind the wounds of division", after the gruelling, acrimonious electoral battle.
As the United States wakes up to a world in which Donald Trump has become the president-elect of the United States, many people are wondering - what the hell happened?
She said: "We must accept this result".
Trump - who had used social media as a tool to court support and mock foes during the campaign - sent a tweet at 6:30 a.m.: "Such a attractive and important evening!" And about building an America that's hopeful, inclusive and big-hearted. She said that the nation is more divided than we thought. President Obama, who has already spoken to and agreed to meet Trump this week to discuss the transition, is also supposed to speak today. "We owe [Trump] an open mind and a chance to lead". Our constitutional democracy enshrines the peaceful transfer of power. And I congratulated her and her family on a very, very hard fought campaign. Still, the first woman nominated for president by a major US political party said she was proud to serve as a champion for young women even in a losing campaign.
We haven't shattered the hardest glass ceiling of all, but some day, somebody will, she said.
"Let us not lose heart", she said.
A NY real estate developer who lives in a sparkling Manhattan high-rise, Trump forged a striking connection with white, working class Americans who feel left behind in a changing economy and diversifying country. He has praised Russian President Vladimir Putin and advocated a closer relationship with Moscow, worrying some in his own party who fear he'll go easy on Putin's provocations.
"To the young women of this campaign, nothing has made me prouder than to be your champion, " she said.
"This loss hurts but please never stop believing that fighting for what's right is worth it", Clinton said.
While the most economically vulnerable people in America voted against Trump by a wider margin than any other income bracket, they nonetheless gave him markedly more support than they did any other recent Republican nominee.
As results continued to roll in following the vote, Hillary Clinton passed Trump for control of the popular vote. "This needs to be a time of redemption, not a time of recrimination", Ryan said in a news conference.
But Trump not only won key battleground states like Florida, North Carolina, and OH, he also broke the "blue wall" of upper Midwest states that had supported every Democratic presidential candidate since Bill Clinton won in 1992.
On Wednesday morning, Clinton delivered what are expected to be her final remarks of the presidential election.