NEW YORK — After a stunning defeat in the race for the White House, Hillary Clinton on Wednesday called on her supporters to give President-elect Donald Trump "an open mind and a chance to lead."
"We have seen that our nation is more deeply divided than we thought, but I still believe in America," she said while addressing a crowd gathered at the New Yorker Hotel in New York City.
Clinton said she offered to work with Trump "on behalf of our country," during an early morning call Wednesday and wished him luck in office.
Clinton, the Democratic nominee for president, conceded the presidential race to Republican nominee Trump early Wednesday after it became clear that she would not secure the 270 electoral votes needed to become president.
Trump's triumph over Clinton, not declared until well after midnight, will end eight years of Democratic dominance of the White House. He'll govern with Congress fully under Republican control and lead a country deeply divided by his rancorous campaign against Clinton. He faces fractures within his own party, too, given the numerous Republicans who either tepidly supported his nomination or never backed him at all.
As he claimed victory early Wednesday, Trump urged Americans to "come together as one united people."
"This is not the outcome we wanted or that we worked so hard for," Clinton said on Wednesday. "And I am sorry, that we did not win this election for the values we share and the vision for our country. … I know how disappointed you feel, because I feel it too, and so do tens of millions of Americans who invested their hopes and dreams in this effort. This is painful, and it will be for a long time."
Clinton became the Democratic nominee for president after a contentious race against U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, from Vermond.
"This loss hurts, but please, never stop believing that fighting for what's right is worth it," Clinton said. "I know we have still not shattered that highest, hardest glass ceiling but someday, someone will, and hopefully sooner than we might think."
Clinton's running mate, U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine, from Virginia, also thanked supporters Wednesday and lauded Clinton as a "history maker."
"She has been, and is, a great history maker," Kaine said. "She has made history in a nation that has done so many things, but (it) has been uniquely difficult for a woman to win elected office. She became the first woman nominee, and last night, she won the popular vote of America."
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