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An American on the U.S. presidential election

An American on the U.S. presidential election

By: Gina LoPresti

As an American working and studying abroad I never imagined that the 2016 US Presidential Election would be such a hot topic in Britain, but I was wrong. The moment anyone finds out I’m American, the question that soon follows is almost always, “So, what do you think of Trump?”

Personally, I am not a Trump fan at all. I think he is a bit racist, sexist, and full of ideas that could not actually be put into effect. Punishing women who get abortions? That is not okay. Build a wall? That's just not a good idea...

Recently Trump came to my hometown for a rally. I'm still unsure as to why he would choose my quiet suburb of 16,000, but he came nonetheless. And I know a few people who weren't so happy about it. Many of my friends on Facebook expressed their distaste for the candidate coming to our town. Some said that they were looking to stay with friends in other towns so they wouldn't have to deal with the rally and the craziness it could bring. Others wanted to take a proactive approach and go protest outside the venue. Many Facebook friends even threatened to unfriend those who were supporting Trump and attending the rally. It certainly seems that my peers have strong feelings about Mr. Trump. Even though I was not in my hometown, or America for that matter, I got to experience plenty of coverage from my very vocal Facebook friends. The rally brought in a crowd of about 10,000 people and there were approximately 200 protestors outside. Two people were arrested inside the venue for disorderly conduct with physical altercation; none were arrested outside the venue. Surprisingly, the rally was pretty calm compared to what some expected.

It is not just those in my hometown that have passionate views on Trump. I have talked with many people who said that they would not be interested in living in a country run by Donald Trump and would consider moving. While being abroad I have heard Americans respond with "If Trump gets elected I'd rather stay here than go home," when asked their opinion on him. It has even become some kind of a trending topic on the Internet. I have come across Buzzfeed quizzes entitled 'Where In Canada Should You Move To If Trump Becomes President' and 'Which Country Should You Move To If Donald Trump Gets Elected President.' It may seem like some kind of joke, but most jokes have a bit of truth to them. These quizzes and similar articles wouldn't exist if there wasn't a demand for them.

It seems many people would be quite upset if Trump became America's next president. Though he does seem to be the projected winner for the Republican party nomination. 1,237 delegates are necessary to win the majority and Trump currently holds 953. Ted Cruz trails behind with 546 and John Kasich only holds 153, so it looks like Trump will most likely be our Republican candidate. The Democratic nomination is a bit closer. 2,383 delegates are needed to gain the majority. Hillary Clinton currently holds 1,662 of them while Bernie Sanders has 1,365.

When asked about the Democratic nominee most of my peers support Bernie Sanders and are passionate about him gaining the lead over Hillary. The most passion though, is still seen in regards to a distaste of Trump. There are always strong feelings in regards to him; either you love him or you hate him. I have not met one person who was neutral. The race to the White House continues to be a hot topic and it seems it will continue that way until the end.