Americans will go to the polls todayLouis Ashworth

“Can the world survive Hillary Clinton?” – Will TG Miller

When the Founding Fathers were writing the Constitution of our fledgling nation, they were trying to create a state whose structures reflected the revolutionary nature of its founding. They foresaw demagogues, and populists, and created systems of checks to ensure that such individuals, even were they to make it to the presidency, would not be able to erode the institutions of our country.

But the protections afforded by the US Constitution end at our shores. They do not prevent globalist American politicians, dedicated to perpetuating an eternal ‘Great Game’ with powers such as Russia, from despoiling the Middle-East – a mere playground for their conflict.

It was Hillary Clinton’s state department which authorized the bombing of Libya – now a failed state, controlled in part by terrorist groups like ISIS and Al-Qaeda. The words “We came, we saw, he died” were followed by her distinctive laugh; this is what comment Clinton had to offer on her intervention which resulted not only in Gaddafi’s removal, but also utter destruction and the loss of countless lives.

Donald Trump is bad, but America can survive him. The world, too, can survive the one term he’ll be able to hold on to. Instead, ask yourself: can the world survive Hillary Clinton? Better yet, ask any Libyan, Iraqi, or Syrian. Actions speak louder than words - vile remarks are incomparable to aggressive warmongering. 

This year, I voted against Hillary Clinton. My conscience gave me no other choice.

Will Miller studies Asian and Middle Eastern Studies at Trinity Hall

“I am incredibly confident Americans will do the right thing” – Alex Mistlin

Ever since Donald Trump first announced that he would “Make America Great Again”, I have only become more proud of my American citizenship. This is undoubtedly counter-intuitive given my position as a young, liberal person of colour. However, the defiance most of the media and population have displayed towards the prospect of ‘President Trump’ has been extremely encouraging.

In the last 12 months I have been lucky enough to visit the country twice. I first went to Los Angeles (where I am registered to vote) for Christmas and then to Orlando, just a fortnight after the horrific murder of 49 people at Pulse, a gay nightclub. Then, spending a morning watching Fox News it wasn’t hard to see why people are angry. Not just about terrorism, but about the stagnant economy, crumbling infrastructure and the state of race relations. This is why Trump’s reluctance to accept the election result – if he loses – is so concerning, particularly if the same tensions that fuelled his rise spill over into violence.

I firmly believe that the first step in bringing the nation together is to elect Hillary Clinton. I am incredibly confident that a majority of Americans will do the right thing come election day.

Alex Mistlin studies HSPS at Emmanuel College

“A vote for Mr Trump should be a wake-up call” – Joshua Chamberlain

Both candidates are awful, but I am probably going to vote Donald Trump for president. In many respects I dislike him more than I dislike Clinton, but a vote for Mr Trump means two things to me.

First, it reminds Clinton that, yes, she is a terrible candidate. She is currently neck and neck with a man who at times seems to struggle putting together coherent sentences. If she wins, her mandate is simply that she is not Trump. If the Republicans keep control of the Senate, she will then be forced to do something that her husband was surprisingly good at: compromise.

Second, a vote for Mr Trump should be a wake-up call for every overpaid consultant and cocky government staffer in D.C. that they are out of touch with large swaths of the country. I’m currently working on a US Senate campaign for a Senator that I have a large amount of respect for. But, many in D.C. are simply out of touch with the rest of the country. Trump has raised some valid points that many in D.C. simply tried to ignore.

While he has taken many of these points too far, it is because he has finally discussed what so many people ignored and Clinton’s extremely questionable behaviour that he has remained competitive, despite his clear failings.

Joshua Chamberlain graduated with an MPhil in International Relations and Politics at Wolfson College

“I’m ashamed to be American” – Gracelin Baskaran

When I meet someone new, I sometimes lie and say I’m Canadian. If I don’t, the inevitable next question is: ‘How do you feel about Donald Trump and the election?’ I was fortunate to grow up on the border of the US and Canada, so my bland Midwestern accent lets me get away with it. 

For the first time in my life, I’m ashamed to be American. I’m ashamed there’s a strongly-supported presidential candidate who has developed a campaign on fear rhetoric. Scared of Hispanics (rapists/drug-runners)? Blacks (criminals)? Refugees (ISIS)? Muslims (terrorists)? Women (disgusting breast feeders)? Journalists (scummy election riggers)? Vote Trump!

I worked on Obama’s 2008 campaign, an unprecedented election with an overwhelming rhetoric of ‘hope’. Redemption from Bush-era policies was near: a fresh start. I miss that feeling of empowerment. This election has made me feel weak at the knees, as I see hate and bigotry flow freely.

I voted for Hillary Clinton, not because she’s great, but because I’d rather have someone with decency and experience at the helm. I’ll be honest though, regardless of the election outcome, I hope whoever wins is only a one-term president. I’m certain America can do better than either of the two major candidates in front of us.

Gracelin Baskaran is studying for a PhD in Development Studies at Lucy Cavendish College

“I’ll be applying for political refugee status” – Madeleine Lofchy

An ocean away, my country is teetering on the brink of shambles. I scoffed at the likelihood that my fellow Americans could vote for Trump in the primaries, but then it happened. So despite the New York Times’ fairly reassuring polls that put Hillary at consistently above 80 per cent chances of winning, it’s still a one in five chance that I’ll be applying for political refugee status in a few days.

In a way, this is a dramatic election to be a first-time voter, and I hope that the significance of this election gets people out to the voting booth at home. I’m the child of Canadian immigrants—my mother came to America shortly before giving birth to my older sister so that she would be a natural-born citizen, and while they left their country behind, they did not leave their fairly left-leaning ideals. My hometown, on the other hand, is a right-wing enclave in the democratic state of Illinois. Our neighbours joke that we bring the only ideological and national diversity to the whole village, and the Trump signs and stickers speckling their front lawns and car bumpers speak to the truth of this statement.

So being away from the Republican bubble, watching with mostly confidence and a tiny niggling sense of unease and doubt about the future of America, I send my ballot to the states and a prayer to whatever higher power hasn’t forsaken us.

Madeleine Lofchy studies HSPS at Gonville & Caius College