By Landry Harlan
BU News Service
The crowd in Braintree had to leave before the main event finished, but that didn’t quell their excitement as Republican Donald Trump marched to a victory over Democrat Hillary Clinton in the presidential election.
Hundreds packed into the Trump campaign’s Massachusetts “Victory Party”, creating a sea of crimson hats, ties, sweaters and American flags. There was even a cardboard cutout of Trump giving his signature thumbs up for attendees to pretend he was at the party, too. The party was shut down at 1 a.m., before the race was called, but victory seemed inevitable most of the night.
Geoff Diehl, a Massachusetts state representative and co-chair of the Massachusetts Trump campaign, chalks up the win to Trump’s ability to communicate.
“He spoke to audiences like no one had before,” Diehl said.
Trump’s New Hampshire campaign chair Lou Murray fired up the crowd early in the night, explaining how Trump supporters had been mischaracterized and insulted.
“How many people here are deplorables?” he said to cheers. “We’re going to rise above all those insults tonight!”
And so they did. Trump’s chances surged after huge victories in Ohio, Florida and North Carolina, three crucial battleground states. As the night wore on, Hillary Clinton’s chances waned with the electoral map reflecting the red glow of the room.
Allan Grace, a Defense Department employee from Randolph, waited a long time for this moment, citing its historical significance.
“The past 30 years our country has slipped into a vision of liberalism opposed to what our founders wanted,” he said. He thinks the “media” carries much of the blame. “They were like an extension of Hillary Clinton’s campaign. Some journalists just want to grind their axe.”
“I’m really excited,” said building architect Eric Boehlke when asked what he envisions the next 4-8 years with Trump as President. “I think a lot of good will happen. Maybe people will be motivated to succeed like they hadn’t before.”
As the crowd dispersed with hooping and hollering and high-fiving into the November early morning chill, it was the wise words of Trump button maker Mary Pavilonis of Marshville that offered hope for reconciliation after this deeply divided election
“No matter what, we have to care for each other.”