Editorial

U.S., Missouri usher in new era of GOP power

Sunday, November 13, 2016

The last few days have been a whirlwind for our country.

In a historic election, voters decided to take the country in a new direction and elected Donald Trump as president. Trump defied predictions, conventional wisdom and so many norms on his way to the presidency.

It's clear the people did not want to accept status quo and send a Democrat who would continue Obama's policies to the White House.

Much has been said and written in the days following Trump's victory. There are at least a hundred ways to slice the hows and the whys.

So the country will change course. Trump will bring a brash new style to government. It remains to be seen how his ideas and vision will crystallize.

The Republicans now have the presidency and majorities in the House and Senate, a combination of power the party hasn't held since 1928. And while politically the GOP now holds that power, we are still a very divided nation.

We were moved by Hillary Clinton's concession speech. Perhaps more than any time during her campaign, Clinton came off as humble and human. While obviously disappointed, the Secretary of State and former First Lady was gracious and honorable in her call for a peaceful transition of power. Trump as well showed an appreciation for Clinton.

So many of those who supported each of those candidates, however, aren't being as gracious. Many Clinton supporters are protesting in the streets. Some of Trump's supporters are boastful and arrogant.

Trump won the race. The people voted in a fair election. It was oftentimes ugly. But this is how our system works. Conservatives took it on the chin the last two presidential elections. Now, the conservatives have won. Protesting seems counterproductive after an election. For the past 18 months, people have had the opportunity to raise their voices and express their desires in a democratic way. Those voices were not strong enough in the ballot box. Sure, everyone has the right to assemble and speak. Those rights don't go away after an election, but the protests don't seem to have a purpose.

Likewise, it's important that Republicans maintain a certain amount of humility. Trump won through a fair election via the electoral college process, but the Republican nominee did not get the most individual votes. More people in our country voted for Clinton. Be gracious in victory. Be respectful.

The victory means a titanic shift in our nation's politics. We hope Trump's leadership, along with congressional majorities will bring in policies to reduce government control and burdensome regulations, will usher in a conservative justice to the Supreme Court and will strengthen law and order in the country.

We also saw a major political tsunami overpower Missouri politics. Once a purple state, Missouri has turned red. Republicans went 5-for-5 in state contests. Particularly interesting was former Navy SEAL Eric Greitens' win over Attorney General Chris Koster for governor. Koster, despite being a Democrat, had endorsements from the NRA and several agriculture groups, but he lost to Greitens by six percentage points, a sizable victory. Republicans also won races for lieutenant governor (Mike Parson), attorney general (Josh Hawley), secretary of state (Jay Ashcroft) and treasurer (Eric Schmitt). Republican Sen. Roy Blunt also held off Jason Kander.

Never before has the Republican party held such clout in the Show Me State.

So as we enter a new era in state and federal government, we are hopeful. We hope and expect that conservative policies will be put in place and improve our state and country.

It's time to move forward.

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