Americans should accept results, Clinton says
(UPDATED) Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton early Thursday morning officially conceded the U.S. presidential race to Republican rival Donald Trump, in a speech at a hotel in Manhattan, New York.
Clinton said Americans should accept the results of the election, which left millions stunned in the U.S. and caused shockwaves in politics and business worldwide.
"We must accept this result. Donald Trump is going to be our president. We owe him an open mind and a chance to lead," she said in a speech applauded several times by her staff and supporters.
Clinton said she has congratulated Trump and offered to work with him. "I hope that he will be a president for all of our country."
“I'm sorry that we did not win this election for the values we all share," she said. "This is painful, and it will be for a long time. But I want you to remember this. Our campaign was never about one person. It was about building a country that we love. We have seen that our country was more deeply divided than we ever thought."
Clinton said her supporters must continue to defend non-discrimination, rule of law, and equality.
"We've spent a year-and-a-half bringing together millions of people," she said. "We believe the American dream is big enough for everyone."
"Our responsibility as citizens is to continue to do our part to build that better stronger fairer America that we all seek," she added.
She thanked her runningmate, Tim Kaine, who is returning to the U.S. Senate.
Clinton also thanked President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle. "Our country owes you an enormous debt of gratitude. We thank you for your graceful determined leadership that has meant so much," she said.
"And to Bill and Chelsea, Mark Charlotte Aidan, my love for you means more than I can ever express. You crisscrossed this country on my behalf and lifted me up when I needed it most."
Clinton also thanked her campaign staff, volunteers, organizers, and donors. "You poured your hearts into this campaign. You were the best campaign that anybody could have ever expected or wanted."
"You will have successes and setbacks too. This loss hurts. But please never stop believing that fighting for what’s right is worth it."
"To all the women who put their faith in this campaign and me, I want you to know that nothing has made me prouder than to be your champion," she said. "I know we have still not shattered that highest and hardest glass ceiling, but I know someday someone will, and hopefully sooner than we might think right now."
"And to all the little girls who are watching this, never doubt that you are valuable, and deserving of every chance to pursue your own dreams."
Clinton entered election day leading in national polls, with what political pundits said was a clearer path to the 270 electoral votes needed to win the race.
However, her path narrowed until it closed completely.
Trump won after capturing Wisconsin's 10 electoral votes, putting him over the 270 threshold.
The outspoken billionaire scored key wins in three major swing states - Ohio, Florida, and North Carolina.
Trump praised Clinton in his victory speech and called on Americans to unite following one of the closest presidential elections in U.S. history.
"She congratulated us. It’s about us. On our victory, and I congratulated her and her family on a very, very hard-fought campaign," he said. "I mean, she fought very hard. Hillary has worked very long and very hard over a long period of time, and we owe her a major debt of gratitude for her service to our country."
Trump also vowed to improve the lives of Americans and said his administration will deal fairly with other countries. - with ANC