Donald Trump wins US presidential race: AP

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 09 2016 03:35 PM | Updated as of Nov 10 2016 01:39 AM

Donald Trump. Jim Urquhart, Reuters

Republican Donald Trump bested expectations on Tuesday to win the 2016 US presidential elections, stumping Democratic rival and former secretary of state Hillary Clinton, according to the Associated Press.

Trump, the 70-year-old Republican nominee, was elected the 45th president of the United States after securing 276 electoral votes over Clinton's 218, according to the AP count.

It was an unexpected turnout as Clinton had been strong since the start of the primaries. But Trump, who has never held an elective post, came out of nowhere to challenge Clinton in a divisive general election.

On July 20, Trump was proclaimed the Republican Party's standard-bearer after beating out 16 candidates and snagging majority of the delegates.

Since then, he has been sparking controversies left and right with his rhetoric on Muslims, Hispanics and women, to name a few, alarming many people on both sides of the fence.

He most famously talked about building a wall to stop illegal immigration, calling illegal immigrants from Mexico rapists and most recently boasting in a video how he groped women.

Despite these, many Americans said they prefer the unfiltered candidate over the embattled New York lawmaker.

Clinton championed equality, women's rights and universal healthcare, among other issues. Over the course of the campaign, however, she was haunted by her controversial use of a private email server during her time as secretary of state, with the FBI going back on forth on its investigation into the matter.

Clinton was named on July 28, 2016 as the Democratic Party's first ever woman nominee for president after getting 2,842 votes to Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders' 1,865.

The 2016 race was the most bruising in modern memory.

Barack Obama's election eight years ago as the nation's first black president had raised hopes of uniting Americans, but the current contest has only highlighted the country's divisions -- and the fact that voters are not necessarily happy with their options.

Exit polls by ABC News and NBC News found that both Clinton and Trump are seen as untrustworthy by majorities of voters, while most find Trump's temperament unpresidential. With Agence France Presse