EU invites Trump to summit, warns against ‘isolation’
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EU invites Trump to summit, warns against ‘isolation’

AIPAC congratulates Trump, sees ‘most pro-Israel Congress ever’; Clinton concedes: ‘We owe Trump an open mind and the chance to lead’; Trump invites Netanyahu to visit Washington, PM says

  • Hillary Clinton, holding hands with her husband, former President Bill Clinton, waves to a crowd outside a New York hotel as she arrives to speak to her staff and supporters after losing the race for the White House, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
    Hillary Clinton, holding hands with her husband, former President Bill Clinton, waves to a crowd outside a New York hotel as she arrives to speak to her staff and supporters after losing the race for the White House, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
  • Protesters against President-elect Donald Trump march down a street east of the University of Oregon campus in Eugene, Ore., Wednesday, November 9, 2016. (Chris Pietsch/The Register-Guard via AP)
    Protesters against President-elect Donald Trump march down a street east of the University of Oregon campus in Eugene, Ore., Wednesday, November 9, 2016. (Chris Pietsch/The Register-Guard via AP)
  • President-elect Donald Trump shakes hands with supporters after giving his acceptance speech during his election night rally, Wednesday, November 9, 2016, in New York. (AP Photo/John Locher)
    President-elect Donald Trump shakes hands with supporters after giving his acceptance speech during his election night rally, Wednesday, November 9, 2016, in New York. (AP Photo/John Locher)
  • Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and then-Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump meeting at Trump Tower in New York, September 25, 2016. (Kobi Gideon/GPO)
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and then-Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump meeting at Trump Tower in New York, September 25, 2016. (Kobi Gideon/GPO)
  • An image of Hillary Clinton is speared by a dart on a dartboard at Mike's Place bar in Jerusalem early November 9, 2016. Donald Trump supporters were watching the results of the US presidential race at the watering hole. (Melanie Lidman/Times of Israel)
    An image of Hillary Clinton is speared by a dart on a dartboard at Mike's Place bar in Jerusalem early November 9, 2016. Donald Trump supporters were watching the results of the US presidential race at the watering hole. (Melanie Lidman/Times of Israel)
  • Trump supporters at Mike's Place bar in Jerusalem on November 9, 2016. (Melanie Lidman/ Times of Israel)
    Trump supporters at Mike's Place bar in Jerusalem on November 9, 2016. (Melanie Lidman/ Times of Israel)
  • US president-elect Donald Trump greets wife Melania after speaking at the New York Hilton Midtown in New York on November 8, 2016. (AFP PHOTO/SAUL LOEB)
    US president-elect Donald Trump greets wife Melania after speaking at the New York Hilton Midtown in New York on November 8, 2016. (AFP PHOTO/SAUL LOEB)

Donald Trump becomes the 45th president of the United States in a shock win after one of the most acrimonious elections in memory.

The Times of Israel liveblogged developments as they happened. Catch up on our earlier coverage of election night here.

Democrats’ path to Senate majority slipping away

Democrats’ chances of retaking the Senate majority slip away as Republicans hang onto key seats in Wisconsin, North Carolina, Indiana and Florida.

Democrats grab a Republican-held seat in Illinois, but the outcome in Wisconsin is a surprise as both parties had expected it to flip for the Democrats. Wisconsin GOP Sen. Ron Johnson’s victory over former Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold forecasts a grim night for the Democrats, who could be consigned to minority status on Capitol Hill for years to come.

Races in GOP-held Pennsylvania, New Hampshire and Missouri remain too close to call as Republicans defend a slim 54-46 majority in an unpredictable election year. Democrats will have to win all of those and hang onto Democratic-held Nevada to reach a 50-50 outcome, and could then only claim majority status if Democrat Hillary Clinton wins the White House. The vice president casts tie-breaking votes in the Senate.

— AP

Anxious Clinton campaign waits for election returns

Anxious aides to Democrat Hillary Clinton watch key swing states Ohio, North Carolina and Florida go for Republican Donald Trump, while keeping a close eye on Michigan and Wisconsin — two states that had seemed like safe bets for her as the presidential race shapes up to be far closer than her top strategists had anticipated.

“I’m terrified,” says Clinton supporter Niki Rarig, 34, who traveled to New York City from Portland, Oregon, for what was meant to be a victory celebration. “I just can’t even imagine what a Trump presidency would look like.”

The shape of the contest was startling to Clinton and her aides, who ended their campaign exuding confidence. Many stopped returning calls and text messages as the votes were tallied. Clinton, her family and close aides hunkered down to watch returns at a Manhattan hotel suite.

Democrats have carried Michigan in every presidential election since 1992, and Clinton made two stops there in the final days of the campaign to shore up support, but she never made a stop in Wisconsin after the primary there last spring, confident of a victory there. Both states remain too close to call.

— AP

Ex-Israeli envoy to US: Trump unlikely to act on all campaign pledges

While the world reacts with shock to Trump’s likely surprise win, it must remember that the president-elect is unlikely to implement all the policies he advocated during the election campaign, says former Israeli ambassador to the US Itamar Rabinovich.

“It takes one set of ideas and set of statements to get elected, and a different set of ideas to govern,” he says at an event at the Institute for National Security Studies at Tel Aviv University.

If Trump were actually to follow through on all his proposals, it would “create a degree of international turmoil the world and the US will not be able to deal with,” Rabinovich says.

“We will likely see a serious moderation of some of the policies. No wall will be erected on Mexican border. Muslims will not be prevented from entering the US, and so on. However, there will be changes.”

He says that change “will be dramatic.” And yet, some of these changes will be moderated by the president’s aides and other forces within the administration.

— Raphael Ahren

Calif., Mass. okay recreational pot; executions back in Nebraska

California and Massachusetts vote to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, giving a huge boost to the campaign to allow pot nationwide. Seven more states also vote on marijuana measures, while others vote on gun control and capital punishment.

In Nebraska, voters reinstate the death penalty, reversing the Legislature’s decision last year to repeal capital punishment. Nebraska has not executed an inmate since 1997; 10 men currently sit on death row.

Colorado voters approved a measure that will allow physicians to assist a terminally ill person in dying. That’s already a practice in five other states. Coloradans defeat a proposal that would have set up the nation’s first universal health care system.

Five states, including Arizona, Maine and Nevada, considered whether to legalize the recreational use of marijuana. The results were hailed as historic by legalization activists, given that California is the most populous state. Massachusetts is the first state east of the Rockies to join the movement.

Voters in Florida and North Dakota approve measures allowing marijuana use for medical purposes. Voters in Arkansas are considering a similar proposal. Montanans vote on whether to ease restrictions on an existing medical marijuana law.

— AP

Asian shares tumble as Trump gains

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 briefly plunges more than 6.1 percent as investors react to the prospect of a Trump presidency.

By late in Tokyo’s trading session, the Nikkei is down 5.2 percent, after the Kyodo News agency reports that top officials from the Bank of Japan, Finance Ministry and Financial Services Agency will meet later in the day to discuss how to respond to possible wild fluctuations in financial markets.

Japanese shares tend to gain when the yen weakens, since that can help manufacturers when they bring back profits from overseas.

— AP

Ex-US envoy to Israel fears prejudice unleashed by Trump campaign

The Trump campaign “has unleashed some currents of behavior that will be hard to put back in the box: anti-Semitism, prejudice against Latinos, immigrants, women, and so on,” says Dan Kurtzer, a former US ambassador to Egypt and Israel.

Former US ambassador to Israel Daniel Kurtzer at Princeton University, February 1, 2011 (AP/Mel Evans)

Former US ambassador to Israel Daniel Kurtzer at Princeton University, February 1, 2011 (AP/Mel Evans)

One victim of a likely Trump presidency will be the notion of American exceptionalism, Kurtzer tells an event in Tel Aviv via video conference.

“The idea being a beacon of democracy will now be seen as a joke, when people like David Duke and other racists are seen celebrating.”

— Raphael Ahren

Clinton on course to win Nevada

Hillary Clinton keeps alive her hopes of being elected president, winning the western state of Nevada, US networks project.

Nevada has six Electoral College votes, allowing Clinton to make up a little of her deficit to Trump, who has a substantial lead.

— AP

US stock futures tumble 5% on fears of Trump win

US stock markets tumble more than five percent in after-hours trading as Trump appears poised to defeat Clinton in the race for the White House.

Futures markets for the S&P 500 fall 5.01 percent and the tech-heavy NASDAQ loses 5.08 percent, reflecting the growing concerns among investors about the economic risks posed by a Trump presidency. The Dow Jones index falls 4.30 percent.

As results come in pointing to an astonishing upset win by Trump, markets that had counted on Clinton to win are caught up in a growing wave of panic.

Stocks had risen yesterday, with Dow Jones index up 0.40 percent and the Nasdaq up 0.53 percent. Futures contracts, which fall while Wall Street is closed, reflect investor sentiment on what will happen down the road.


Trump ahead in Wisconsin, Michigan with most votes counted — CNN

Trump is ahead in both Wisconsin and Michigan with most of the votes counted, CNN reports.

The Republican leads 49% to 45.8% in Wisconsin and 48.4% to 46.7% in Michigan, the channel says.

French far-right leader congratulates Trump

The head of France’s National Front party, Marin Le Pen, tweets her congratulations to Donald Trump on his expected election win.

“Congratulations to the new president of the United States Donald Trump and to the American people” she writes.

AP says Trump wins Pennsylvania, likely handing him presidency

The Associated Press says Trump has won the state of Pennsylvania.

The state’s 20 electoral votes put him at 264.

US envoy to Israel declines to comment on race

US Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro tells a conference in Tel Aviv that the US election has not been decided yet and therefore he will not comment on the outcome.

US Ambassador Dan Shapiro speaks at the 9th Annual International Conference of the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv on January 18, 2016. (Matty Stern/U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv)

US Ambassador Dan Shapiro speaks at the 9th Annual International Conference of the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv on January 18, 2016. (Matty Stern/U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv)

Even if a president-elect is called in the coming moments, he would not comment on future US policies, he says at an event hosted by the Institute for National Security Studies.

Rather, the ambassador gives a lengthy speech highlighting various elements of Israeli-American cooperation, saying that the next administration will inherit a strong and stable relationship that encompasses many areas.

— Raphael Ahren

David Duke congratulates Trump

American white nationalist David Duke congratulates Donald Trump on Twitter, adding a call for rival Hillary Clinton to be jailed.

“GOD BLESS DONALD TRUMP!” he writes. “It’s time to do the right thing, it’s time to TAKE AMERICA BACK!!!”

Ryan congratulates Trump on ‘big night’

Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan congratulates Donald Trump on “his big night.”

A spokeswoman for Ryan confirms that he called Trump on Tuesday evening. AshLee Strong says they had “a very good conversation.”

She says: “The speaker congratulated Trump on his big night and also spoke with his good friend Gov. Mike Pence.”

— AP

Clinton campaign chief: No statement tonight, count not over

Clinton’s campaign director John Podesta addresses her supporters in New York, saying the candidate will not be speaking tonight as votes are still being counted.

“Go home, get some sleep. We will have more to say tomorrow,” he says.

“I want every person across the country who supported her to know your voices, your enthusiasm mean so much to us,” Podesta continues. “We are so proud of you and we so proud of her. She’s done an amazing job and she is not done yet.”

Democrats in Israel still optimistic despite electoral battering

The head of Democrats Abroad Israel says they are still “holding on” to hopes of a Clinton victory.

“We’re still holding on, we’re still holding on,” Tali Zinger says, pointing to the remaining states and counties are “too close to call.”

“We’re still optimistic,” she adds, though “there is a very different tone than there was just a few hours ago. We’re still waiting and seeing. It’s not over till it’s over.”

“Sure we’re surprised,” she says of the results trickling in. “We expected this to be called when the East Coast polls were in and Florida would go to Hillary and we’d wrap this up. And that obviously didn’t happen. So we’re seeing, we’re still hopeful… it hasn’t been called yet, and we’re still holding on.”

— Marissa Newman

Trump arrives at campaign HQ in New York City

Donald Trump arrives at his campaign headquarters at the Hilton Hotel in Midtown Manhattan, where he is expected to address his supporters.

CNN calls Wisconsin for Trump

CNN says Trump has won the state of Wisconsin, bringing him another 10 electoral votes.

AP says Donald Trump is next president of United States

AP says Donald Trump has been elected president of the United States, as voters eager to shake up the nation’s political establishment pick the businessman to lead the country.

An unexpected Republican nominee, Trump rode a wave of support from voters seeking change and willing to accept a candidate loose with facts and accused of sexual misconduct.

In a victory that rattled financial markets worldwide, he upset Democrat Hillary Clinton, who would have become the first woman to serve in the Oval Office.

— AP

Clinton calls Trump to concede election

Hillary Clinton calls Donald Trump to concede the presidential race, CNN reports.

Pence: I am deeply grateful to American people

Republican vice presidential nominee Mike Pence: “The American people have spoken and the American people have elected their new champion. American has elected a new president and it’s almost hard for me to express the honor I and my family feel,” he says. “I am deeply grateful to American people.”

WATCH: Trump makes victory speech

Donald Trump speaks to his supporters after winning the presidential election.

Trump: I will be president for all Americans

Trump strikes a conciliatory note in his victory speech, calling for unity and vowing to be president for all Americans.

He says Clinton called to congratulate him, and praises her for a hard-fought race.

Trump praises Republican establishment for helping win

Trump name checks Republican leaders, including RNC chair Reince Priebus, for their assistance during the election.

Likud minister Yisrael Katz congratulates Trump

Likud minister Yisrael Katz congratulates Trump on his victory.

“I am sure our good relationship with the US will continue,” Katz says, according to Israel National News.

“We did not interfere in the elections,” he says, “we have enough problems here.”

Arab MK: Trump election is a wake-up call

Meretz MK Isawi Frej expresses shock at Trump’s victory, saying it should be a wake-up call for the world.

“I woke up this morning to discover that Trump will be the next president of the United States,” he writes on Facebook. “The leader of the free world will be a serial harasser of women, a racist and ranter, who was democratically elected by the American people.

“Trump’s victory was not a mistake, and he is not our main problem at the moment. The direction the American people are going in, and with them the rest of the world, is the problem. The world has become more violent, more racist and more frightening.

“Trump’s victory is the red light we need to wake up, to re-calculate and work out how we get through this period.”

Barkat congratulates Trump, reminds him of vow to move embassy to Jerusalem

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat sends a letter of congratulations to Trump, reminding the president-elect of his campaign vow to move the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

“I am confident that you will continue to empower our city by reaffirming its sovereignty and moving the US Embassy to Jerusalem,” Barkat says in the letter he posted on Twitter.

Herzog to Trump: Your win shows elites are thing of past

Opposition leader Isaac Herzog congratulates Trump on his win.

“Warm congratulations to the president of the most powerful nation in the world: Donald J Trump!” Herzog writes in Hebrew on Facebook.

“Today American democracy chose … an American leader who showed the commentators and the skeptics that we are in a new era of change and replacing the old elitist regimes!” he says. “You did the unthinkable, against all the odds, polls, research and the prophets of the old era. I’m convinced that the defense and financial alliance with our strongest and most powerful ally will continue with a vengeance under your presidency.”

Putin congratulates Trump, hopes for ‘constructive dialogue’

Vladimir Putin congratulates Trump on his election win.

The Russian president expresses the hope for “constructive dialogue” between the two countries.

— AP

Egyptian president calls to congratulate Trump

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi calls Trump to congratulate him on his election win.

Sissi says he was the first world leader to call the American president-elect, according to the Walla website. During their conversation, Sissi expresses the hope “for a new atmosphere in the relationship between the US and Egypt.”

Livni congratulates Trump, hopes for moderation

Zionist Union MK Tzipi Livni sends Trump her congratulations on Twitter, saying she hopes he will stick to the conciliatory gestures in his victory speech and not the inflammatory rhetoric he used on the campaign trail.

“Congratulations @realDonaldTrump,” she writes. “I hope for the US and the world that he actualize the promises of his acceptance speech, not the campaign.”

Turkey vows to strengthen US ties following Trump win

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu congratulates Trump on Twitter, Reuters reports. He says Ankara will step up its “trust-based relations and cooperation” with the US in the wake of the Republican’s win.

Abbas urges Trump to work toward Palestinian statehood

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s office calls on Trump to work towards a Palestinian state.

“We are ready to deal with the elected president on the basis of a two-state solution and to establish a Palestinian state on the 1967 borders,” says Abbas aide Nabil Abu Rudeineh.

He says a failure to resolve the decades-old conflict would mean “the unstable situation will continue in the region.”


Hamas: We don’t expect shift in US bias in wake of Trump win

Hamas says it does not expect a change in American “bias” against the Palestinians following Trump’s win.

“The Palestinian people do not count much on any change in the US presidency because the US policy towards the Palestinian issue is a consistent policy on the basis of bias,” says Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri.

“Nevertheless, we hope that US president Trump will re-evaluate this policy and rebalance it on the Palestinian issue.”


Iran urges Trump to stick to international accords

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif urges Trump to stick to international accords.

The president-elect has slammed the nuclear agreement with Iran signed by Obama and other world leaders last year, calling it “the worst deal ever negotiated.”

— Agencies

Knesset speaker congratulates Trump on behalf of parliament

Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein (Likud) begins today’s parliamentary session in Jerusalem with message of congratulations for Trump.

“‏Allow me to congratulate, on behalf of the Knesset and myself, the president-elect of the United States of America, Mr. Donald J. Trump, and vice president-elect Mr. Mike Pence. I am confident that the longstanding friendship and alliance between the United States and Israel will remain strong during Mr. Trump’s term in office,” he says.

“We send our best wishes to the American people and are certain that they will remain united in dealing with the challenges facing America and the world today.”

Bennett: Trump win means era of Palestinian state is over

Education Minister Naftali Bennett congratulates Trump on his victory, saying he hopes it means a shift in US policy on Palestinian statehood.

“I congratulate president-elect Donald Trump, and all the American people,” he says. “We are sure the special relationship between the United States and Israel will continue, and even grow stronger.”

He continues: “Trump’s victory is an opportunity for Israel to immediately retract the notion of a Palestinian state in the center of the country, which would hurt our security and just cause. This is the position of the president-elect, as written in his platform, and it should be our policy, plain and simple. The era of a Palestinian state is over.”

Bennett, who heads the right-wing Jewish Home party, thanks Clinton for “her friendship with Israel.”

NATO says US leadership ‘as important as ever’

US leadership is essential in facing up to new security challenges, NATO head Jens Stoltenberg says as he congratulates Donald Trump on his election victory.

“We face a challenging new security environment, including hybrid warfare, cyberattacks, the threat of terrorism. US leadership is as important as ever,” Stoltenberg says.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg attends a joint press conference during the second day of a NATO Summit in Warsaw, Poland on July 9, 2016. (AFP/Wojtek Radwanski)

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg attends a joint press conference during a NATO Summit in Warsaw, Poland on July 9, 2016. (AFP/Wojtek Radwanski)

“I look forward to working with president-elect Trump,” he adds.

Trump caused consternation during the campaign when he suggested Washington would think twice about coming to the aid of an endangered NATO ally if it had not paid its dues, casting doubt on the US-led alliance’s core collective defense commitment.

Asked about these remarks, Stoltenberg says “all allies have made a solemn commitment to defend each other, this is absolute and unconditioned.”


British PM congratulates Trump, touts close bilateral ties

British PM Theresa May sends Trump a message of congratulations, highlighting the long-standing close relationship between their two countries.

“I would like to congratulate Donald Trump on being elected the next President of the United States, following a hard-fought campaign,” she says in a statement.

“Britain and the United States have an enduring and special relationship based on the values of freedom, democracy and enterprise. We are, and will remain, strong and close partners on trade, security and defense. I look forward to working with president-elect Donald Trump, building on these ties to ensure the security and prosperity of our nations in the years ahead.”

Turkey asks Trump to extradite Gulen

Turkey’s prime minister calls on Donald Trump to extradite US-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen — blamed by Ankara for the failed coup in July — as soon as he is sworn in.

Binali Yildirim says he hopes the new US leadership will take into consideration Turkey’s “sensitivities concerning the fight against terrorism,” give priority to policies that would bring peace and stability to the region and advance traditional friendship between the two countries.

Ties between the two allies have been strained over perceptions in Turkey that the US is reluctant to arrest and extradite Gulen. Turkey is also frustrated by Washington’s backing for Syrian Kurdish militia fighting the Islamic State group in Syria. Ankara considers the militia to be a terrorist group.

— AP

German FM: We respect election result, but ‘a lot will get harder’

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier says the outcome of the US presidential election is “different than most people in Germany would have wanted, but of course we have to respect it.”

He says Trump’s victory means “nothing is going to get easier. A lot will get harder.”

But he tells reporters in Berlin that it is important to maintain good trans-Atlantic relations, which he likened to “the foundations of the West.”

He says Germany would seek dialogue with the Trump administration, but warns that American foreign policy would likely become “less predictable.”

— AP

Obama calls Trump to congratulate him

Obama calls Trump to congratulate him on winning the election, NBC reports, quoting the president-elect’s campaign manager.

The details of the conversation were apparently not made public.

Likud deputy minister: I backed Trump, PM ordered my silence

Deputy Minister for Regional Affairs Ayoub Kara says he personally supported Trump for the US presidency, but kept quiet because the prime minister told him to.

“I had the honor to be among the only ones, apart from the prime minister, to visit the Trump headquarters in NY, and I was afraid — like many others — to identify and publicly support him, so as not to hurt the government,” says the Druze lawmaker, who is a member of Netanyahu’s Likud party.

Ayoub Kara (photo credit: Jusmine/Wikimedia Commons)

Ayoub Kara (Jusmine/Wikimedia Commons)

Kara says the PM “told us unequivocally not to comment on either candidate, and asked us not to respond until after the elections, and I’m happy that we complied with his request. We didn’t comment and we didn’t get involved… It’s no secret that everyone had a preference, and I think that most of the Israeli public wanted Trump and most of the Jewish population in the US… wanted Clinton.”

He hails the “special ties” with the US, which he says are independent of the president, and hails Trump’s win as “wonderful news” for the “settlements in Israel, for the status of a united Jerusalem, and for the free world.”

— Marissa Newman

Netanyahu congratulates Trump, calls him ‘true friend of Israel’

Netanyahu issue a statement congratulating Trump on his win, calling the president-elect a “true friend of Israel.”

“We will work together to advance security, stability and peace in our region,” he says. “The strong relationship between the United States and Israel is based on shared values, common interests and a joint destiny.

“I am sure that president-elect Trump and I will continue to strengthen the unique alliance between Israel and the United States and take it to new heights.”

Iran’s Rouhani: Trump cannot reverse nuclear deal

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani says there is “no possibility” of its nuclear deal with world powers being overturned by Trump, despite his threat to rip it up.

“Iran’s understanding in the nuclear deal was that the accord was not concluded with one country or government, but was approved by a resolution of the UN Security Council and there is no possibility that it can be changed by a single government,” Rouhani tells his cabinet, according to Iranian state television.


Settler leader calls Trump win ‘day of celebration’ for Israel

The head of Samaria Regional Council in the West Bank, Yossi Dagan, says welcomes Trump’s election victory, calling him a “true friend.”

From left, Yossi Dagan, Mark Zell and Abe Katzman celebrating the opening of the Republicans Overseas Israel office in the West Bank town of Karnei Shomron, Sept. 5, 2016. (Andrew Tobin)

From left, Yossi Dagan, Mark Zell and Abe Katzman celebrating the opening of the Republicans Overseas Israel office in the West Bank town of Karnei Shomron, Sept. 5, 2016. (Andrew Tobin)

“This is a day of celebration not only for the United States but also for Israel’s West Bank settlements. A true friend has won,” Dagan says, according to Israel National News. “I openly expressed my support for Trump during the election season because this was an important time for settlements, for Samaria, which now has a president who is a supporter and lover of Israel.”

Dagan adds: “We look forward to the first visit of the president-elect Trump and I also invite Trump to come to the West Bank, which is the cradle of Jewish history and the heart of the State of Israel.”

European Central Bank official: Trump win ‘not good day for world economy’

Trump’s shock election win “is not a good day for the world economy” and could force the European Central Bank “to intervene,” governing council member Ewald Nowotny says.

Nowotny tells reporters in Vienna the ECB is “prepared to intervene” as he warns of “massive insecurities” after the vote outcome sends shockwaves through global markets.

“Close observation is certainly necessary right now,” says Nowotny, who is on the ECB governing council that makes monetary policy decisions in his capacity as head of Austria’s central bank.

Europe’s recovery could also be affected if Trump’s presidency took a “menacing turn,” he says.

Nowotny says he expects “a period of uncertainty in the medium term,” as happened after Britain’s June decision to leave the EU.


Yesha chief invites Trump to visit West Bank

The chief foreign envoy of the Yesha Council, the umbrella organization of settlements, congratulates Trump and invites him to the West Bank.

“I congratulate president-elect Trump on his historic victory,” says Oded Revivi in a statement released to the media. “I invite him to become the first sitting US president to visit our flourishing communities and witness how our presence in Judea and Samaria [West Bank] is key to ensure a peaceful future for millions of Palestinians and Israelis.”

Hollande says Trump win ‘opens period of uncertainty’

French President Francois Hollande, who once said Donald Trump made him want to retch, warns that the Republican billionaire’s victory in the US election “opens a period of uncertainty.”

In a televised address, Hollande underlines that the United States is a key partner for business, for solving wars in the Middle East and tackling global warming — something Trump dismissed as a hoax.

“This American election opens a period of uncertainty,” he says in a statement that offered only brief congratulations to the president-elect.

As well as France keeping up its global role, “this context calls for a united Europe, capable of making itself heard and of promoting policies wherever its interests or its values are challenged,” Hollande says.


Saudi king hopes Trump will bring regional stability

King Salman of Saudi Arabia sends a letter to Trump congratulating him on his electoral victory, the official Saudi news agency says.

In his letter, Salman expresses the hope that Trump “will succeed in achieving security and stability in the Middle East and the entire world,” Walla reports.

US President Barack Obama (C) walks with King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud of Saudi Arabia (R) at Erga Palace in Riyadh, April 20, 2016. Obama arrived in Saudi Arabia for a two day visit hoping to ease tensions with longtime ally Riyadh (AFP PHOTO / Jim Watson)

US President Barack Obama (C) walks with King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud of Saudi Arabia (R) at Erga Palace in Riyadh, April 20, 2016. (AFP PHOTO / Jim Watson)

Obama, Trump to meet at White House tomorrow

The White House says Obama called both Trump and Clinton in the wake of the presidential election, to congratulate and commiserate, respectively.

The president also invites his successor to meet with him at the White House tomorrow to discuss the transition.

Obama also urges the country to come together after a fractious election season.

Liberman congratulates Trump, vows to deepen bilateral ties

Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman congratulates Donald Trump on his electoral victory and promises to continue working to improve ties with the United States.

“[Israel] will continue, along with the new president, to safeguard and strengthen the special relationship and courageous friendship between the countries and work to strengthen the shared values of Israel and the United States,” Liberman says in a statement.

— Judah Ari Gross

Taliban says Trump must pull US troops from Afghanistan

The Taliban calls on Trump to withdraw all US forces from Afghanistan once he takes office as president.

In a statement sent to The Associated Press, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid says that a Trump administration “should allow Afghans to become a free nation and have relationships with other countries based on non-interference in each other’s affairs.”

The Afghan conflict is in its 16th year. The Taliban have spread their footprint across Afghanistan in the two years since most international combat troops withdrew.

President Barack Obama expanded US troops’ mandate to enable them to work more closely on the battlefield with their Afghan counterparts, and to conduct counter-terrorism operations against al-Qaeda, the Islamic State group and the Taliban.

— AP

Shaked urges Trump to move US Embassy to Jerusalem

Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked tweets her congratulations to Trump, and calls on him to make good on an election pledge to move the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

“I congratulate Trump, a true friend of Israel, on his election,” she writes in Hebrew. “This is an opportunity for the American administration to move the US embassy to Jerusalem.”

Aide: Trump had ‘gracious’ conversation with Clinton

Donald Trump’s campaign manager Kellyanne Conway says the president-elect had a “gracious exchange” with Hillary Clinton and a “warm conversation” with President Barack Obama.

Donald Trump's campaign manager Kellyanne Conway speaks to NBC's "Meet the Press" on October 23, 2016. (screen capture: YouTube)

Donald Trump’s campaign manager Kellyanne Conway speaks to NBC’s “Meet the Press” on October 23, 2016. (screen capture: YouTube)

In a pair of interviews on ABC and NBC News Wednesday, Conway says Clinton’s top aide, Huma Abedin, called her late last night and connected Clinton with Trump. She says Clinton “congratulated him for his victory,” and he told Clinton that she is “very smart, very tough” and had “waged a tremendous campaign.”

Conway says the Trump campaign isn’t upset that Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton hasn’t yet made a public concession speech.

Trump said during the campaign that he would assign a special prosecutor to investigate Hillary Clinton. But Conway tells ABC’s Good Morning America, “we have not discussed that at all.”

— AP

Climate scientists react with alarm to Trump win

Environmentalists and climate scientists are alarmed over the election of a US president who has called global warming a “hoax.”

Donald Trump’s win raises questions about whether America, once again, will pull out of an international climate deal. Many said it’s now up to the rest of the world to lead efforts to rein in greenhouse gas emissions, while others hold out hope that Trump will change his stance on climate change and honor US commitments under last year’s landmark Paris Agreement.

Marshall Islands President Hilda Heine says that as “the realities of leadership settle in, I expect he will realize that climate change is a threat to his people and to whole countries which share seas with the US.”

— AP

Clinton to address supporters in coming hours

Hillary Clinton will be speaking to her supporters 9:30 a.m. EST (16:30 Israel time). It will be her first public remarks since her stunning defeat to Donald Trump in the US presidential election.

Her campaign says she’ll speak to staff and supporters at a New York hotel.

Clinton did not give a formal concession speech. But she did call Trump early Wednesday to congratulate him on his victory in Tuesday’s election.

— AP

Trump’s conciliatory speech helps soothe market concerns

Conciliatory comments from Trump in the aftermath of his victory over Clinton help global stock markets recover a large chunk of their earlier losses.

Though uncertainty remains over Trump’s trade, immigration and geopolitical policies and what his victory means for the future of globalization, investors appear somewhat calmed by his victory speech, in which he praises Clinton and urges Americans to “come together as one united people” after a divisive campaign.

“While Trump slightly soothed some concerns in his victory speech, uncertainty remains over what kind of a US he plans to lead,” says Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at OANDA.

In Europe, Germany’s DAX is down 0.9 percent at 10,384 while the FTSE 100 index of leading British shares was 0.4 percent lower at 6,818. US stocks are expected to open lower, too, though by far less than earlier predicted. Dow futures are 1.6 percent lower at 17,991 while the broader S&P 500 futures were down 1.7 percent at 2,100.

— AP

Likud MK says Trump presidency doesn’t end two-state hopes

As some right-wing lawmakers ring the death knell for the two-state solution as Trump heads to the White House, not all MKs, on both sides of the aisle, are convinced.

Likud MK Anat Berko, a member of the powerful Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, says “I don’t think” Trump’s presidency ends the two-state peace framework.

“I think the solution will be led by our prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, and we will do it based on the Israeli interest for security. The security needs will determine the solution,” she says. “There will be a solution in the end, and the prime minister is committed to it.”

She says she had no personal preference for president, and praises both candidates as being pro-Israel.

— Marissa Newman

Labor lawmaker says ‘give Trump a chance’ on peace talks

A senior opposition lawmaker, Labor Party secretary general and Zionist Union MK Hilik Bar, who also heads the Knesset caucus for the two-state solution, also rejects the view that Trump’s election means the end of two-state peace efforts between Israel and the Palestinians.

Bar says he believes “Trump will understand that for Jews in Israel, it’s important to separate from the Palestinians.”

“I believe that Trump will understand that what [Jewish Home MK Betzalel] Smotrich said is fundamentally wrong and the two-state solution is the only solution that will ensure a safe, democratic life for the Jewish people, with a Jewish majority in Israel.”

“We have to give him a chance,” says Bar.

Bar says he didn’t come out in support of either candidate, because “just as I don’t like it when others intervene in our elections, I don’t think it’s the role of any Israeli to meddle with the political or democratic process in the US.”

— Marissa Newman

Jewish Home MK: Trump win a ‘tailwind’ for legalizing settlements

Jewish Home MK Shuli Moalem-Refaeli says Trump’s victory is a “golden opportunity” to legalize various outposts in the West Bank, notably Amona, which is slated for demolition in December.

“From my perspective, there is a golden opportunity to pass the regulation law, to go ahead with regulating the settlements in Judea and Samaria, with a tailwind from the new administration,” she says.

The right-wing lawmaker is referring to her proposed legislation, which is set to come to a ministerial vote next week, that would recognize illegal construction in the West Bank if it garners government backing.

She congratulates Trump, and adds: “I very much welcome the decision to remove from the Republican Party platform the two-state solution.”

“I think it reflects an understanding that the US government is going to a different place in terms of Judea and Samaria,” she says. “I believe the close ties, the shared values, the strategy of fighting terror — which is shared by Israel and the US — will only improve.”

— Marissa Newman

Mexican leader congratulates US – but not Trump

Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto is congratulating the US on its election — though not directly winner Donald Trump, who alarmed many by describing Mexican migrants as murderers and rapists.

Pena Nieto has sent a series of tweets repeating his readiness to work with Trump “in favor of the bilateral relationship.” He says Mexico and the US “are friends, partners and allies who should continue collaborating for the competitiveness and development of North America.”

The value of Mexico’s peso currency plunged sharply after the election of Trump, who has denounced the North American Free Trade Agreement that has led to billions of dollars in trade between the two nations.

Mexican Treasury Secretary Jose Antonio Meade held a news conference Wednesday morning, urging against “premature reactions.” He said the election result won’t immediately affect trade and said Mexico “is in a position of strength” to face whatever may come.

A waiter watches a local analysis of incoming US election results on a television in a traditional Mexican cantina in Mexico City, early Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

A waiter watches a local analysis of incoming US election results on a television in a traditional Mexican cantina in Mexico City, early Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

— AP

Former Soviet leader Gorbachev: Time to repair US-Russia ties

Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev says the election of Republican Donald Trump as US president offers an opportunity to repair ties between Moscow and Washington.

The Interfax news agency reports Gorbachev saying, “maybe he will understand that a lot depends on the position of Russia.”

Speaking Wednesday from a hospital bed, Gorbachev says, “Under a new president of the US the Russian-American relationship could get significantly better. I am convinced it is essential now to go straight into a two-way dialogue on the highest level.”

The 85-year-old Gorbachev was admitted to the hospital for what Russian media reported was a planned pacemaker.

Traditional Russian wooden dolls called Matreska depict US presidents, from left, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama and US president-elect Donald Trump displayed in a shop in Moscow, Russia on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2016. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)

Traditional Russian wooden dolls called Matreska depict US presidents, from left, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama and US president-elect Donald Trump displayed in a shop in Moscow, Russia on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2016. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)

— AP

Poland expects Trump to honor NATO deployment pledge

A spokesman for the Polish president says Poland cares a lot whether US President-elect Donald Trump will implement NATO decisions to deploy military deterrence forces in Poland and the Baltic states.

Marek Magierowski says on state Radio 1 Wednesday that it is a priority for Poland to see the implementation of a NATO decision to base four battalions in the region, including a US armored brigade to be stationed in Poland, and also the construction of a US missile defense base.

The region is concerned for its security amid Russia’s rising military assertiveness, while Moscow sees Trump’s election as a potential game-changer in fraught US-Russian ties under Obama.

Polish Defense Minister Antoni Macierewicz says he expects US-Polish ties to be even better under Trump as president.

— AP

Turkey’s Erdogan calls Trump win ‘a positive sign’

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says he hopes Donald Trump’s election as president marks a new era in the United States that he hopes will lead to “beneficial” steps for fundamental rights, liberties and democracy in the world.

Addressing a business group in Istanbul on Wednesday, Erdogan also said he hopes the election result would also be auspicious for the region.

Erdogan said: “Personally and on behalf of the nation, I wish to consider this decision by the American people a positive sign and wish them a successful future.”

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses a business meeting in Istanbul, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. (Murat Cetinmuhurdar/Presidential Press Service, Pool photo via AP)

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses a business meeting in Istanbul, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. (Murat Cetinmuhurdar/Presidential Press Service, Pool photo via AP)

— AP

Italian premier Renzi, a Clinton backer, wishes Trump ‘well in his work’

Italy’s premier offers his congratulations to Donald Trump, brushing aside political differences, following his repeated public endorsements of Hillary Clinton.

Premier Matteo Renzi says Wednesday, “in the name of Italy, I congratulate the president of the United States and wish him well in his work, convinced that the Italian-American friendship remains strong and solid.”

Renzi faces his own political reckoning next month with a constitutional referendum that has mobilized opposition as well as party dissidents against him. A no vote is likely to force at least a government shuffling in Italy, if not new elections.

Renzi was in Washington last month for a state visit with President Barack Obama.

Italian Premier Matteo Renzi arrives to attend the opening ceremony of the academic year of the police training school in Rome, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. (Massimo Percossi/ANSA via AP)

Italian Premier Matteo Renzi arrives to attend the opening ceremony of the academic year of the police training school in Rome, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. (Massimo Percossi/ANSA via AP)

— AP

Far-right German party praises Trump’s ‘uncomfortable truths’

The leaders of the nationalist Alternative for Germany party, which campaigns against Chancellor Angela Merkel’s refugee policy, welcome Donald Trump’s presidential victory.

Party co-leader Frauke Petry says “it was high time that people disenfranchised by the political establishment get their voice back in the United States of America too.”

Petry said Trump’s victory offered the chance to “readjust the trans-Atlantic relationship and end the big conflicts in Ukraine and Syria jointly with Russia” and “replace America’s hegemonic claims in Europe with co-operation among equals.”

Fellow party leader Joerg Meuthen says “the establishment now has to recognize that you can’t rule past the population for long … Trump has rightly been rewarded for his bravery in standing up against the system and speaking uncomfortable truths.”

— AP

Slovenia hopes Melania Trump will visit hometown

The residents of Melania Trump’s hometown in Slovenia are hoping the future US First Lady will come to visit together with her husband.

US flags could be seen in the industrial town of Sevnica on Wednesday as the news came in of Donald Trump winning the US presidency.

Sevnica Mayor Srecko Ocvirk says he doesn’t expect Melania Trump to come any time soon but “I expect her to visit Sevnica later.”

Melania Trump’s childhood neighbor, Mirjana Jelancic, says she is happy for her friend. She says “it was part of her dreams and we are happy if she succeeds.”

Melania Trump, 46, was born Melanija Knavs in Sevnica. She left Slovenia in her 20s to pursue an international modeling career.

Smoke and steam rise from a factory in Sevnica, Slovenia, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. (AP Photo/Darko Bandic)

Smoke and steam rise from a factory in Sevnica, Slovenia, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. (AP Photo/Darko Bandic)

— AP

Hillary Clinton expected to deliver concession speech shortly

Hillary Clinton, whose failed presidential bid sent shockwaves through the Democratic Party since Republican Donald Trump clinched the election win this morning, is expected to deliver her concession speech at 6:15 p.m. Israel time.

She has reportedly already called Trump by phone to congratulate him on his victory.

Media watchdog warns Trump to respect press freedom

Media watchdog Reporters Without Borders warns US President-elect Donald Trump Wednesday to respect press freedom, accusing him of bullying journalists throughout his controversial election campaign.

The Paris-based group says it was alarmed by threats made by Trump that he would reform US libel laws so that “when the New York Times or the Washington Post writes a hit piece (critical of him), we can sue them.”

The Republican, who won a shock victory over favorite Democrat Hillary Clinton, also revoked the credentials of Washington Post journalists following him, complaining of the “phony and dishonest” coverage their paper was giving him, it says in a statement.

“Trump also insulted and bullied reporters who portrayed him negatively or asked him tough questions,” says the group, which is known by its French-language initials RSF.

RSF secretary general Christophe Deloire says Trump’s attempts to restrict “the free press during his presidential campaign have sent a worrying signal about his intentions in the presidency. As president, we call on him to ensure respect for press freedom and free speech under the First Amendment.”


In video, Netanyahu congratulates ‘great friend’ Trump

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu seems truly excited about Donald Trump’s victory yesterday.

In a video posted to his official YouTube account, Netanyahu calls Trump “my friend,” and says the two administrations will bring their countries’ alliance “to even greater heights.”

“President-elect Trump, my friend,

“Congratulations on being elected President of the United States of America. You are a great friend of Israel.

“Over the years, you’ve expressed your support consistently, and I deeply appreciate it.

“I look forward to working with you to advance security, prosperity and peace.

“Israel is grateful for the broad support it enjoys among the American people, and I’m confident that the two of us, working closely together, will bring the great alliance between our two countries to even greater heights.

“May God bless America. May God bless Israel. May God bless our enduring alliance.”

Bosnia divided along ’90s battle lines over Trump win

Bosnia is divided over Donald Trump’s presidential victory in the US, with the country’s Serbs welcoming it while Muslim Bosniaks and Bosnian Croats disappointed with Hillary Clinton’s defeat.

The division is mainly based on the role former US President Bill Clinton’s administration had in ending Bosnia’s devastating 1992-95 war, which took over 100,000 lives and included a four-year siege of Sarajevo.

US-led NATO airstrikes against the Serb artillery pounding the capital and a peace agreement brokered by American negotiators finally ended the war.

Vitomir Blagojevic, a Bosnian Serb from Pale, says he has a very good opinion of Trump. “I am really glad that he won.”

But in Sarajevo, Kemal Hadzibegic, a Muslim Bosniak, describes Trump as “raw.”

“We were in favor of Clinton,” he says. “We trusted her more. This is a real surprise for us, but also for everyone else.”

— AP

Facebook, Twitter report massive use for election

Facebook and Twitter are reporting massive Election Day engagement on social media.

Facebook says 115 million people worldwide generated over 716 million likes, posts, comments and shares related to the election Tuesday. Twitter says more than 75 million Election Day tweets were sent by 3 a.m. Wednesday. That’s more than double the 31 million sent during the entirety of Election Day four years ago.

Google says President-elect Donald Trump also won when it comes to searches on the candidates. The search giant says more searches were performed on the Republican than those for Democrat Hillary Clinton in a majority of the country from Sunday to Tuesday.

— AP

Dutch foreign minister: ‘We will judge Trump on his actions’

Dutch Foreign Minister Bert Koenders says, in a reaction to Donald Trump’s US presidential win, “we will judge him on his actions.”

Koenders, of the center-left Labor Party, says “Trump made statements that were at odds with how we like to see our society and world order.” He cited examples including Trump’s comments about US relationships with NATO, Russia and the European Union.

But the Dutch minister says it’s important for the Netherlands’ close relationship with the United States to continue for economic and geopolitical reasons. He says “we are facing global challenges such as climate change and the fight against terrorism.”

— AP

Paul Ryan, top Republican in Congress, praises Trump for ‘incredible’ win

House Speaker Paul Ryan, the top Republican in elected office (at least until January), offers resounding praise for Donald Trump’s victory.

“This was the most incredible political feat…in my lifetime,” Ryan says in a Wisconsin press conference.

Citing the “unified Republican government,” Ryan notes Trump “heard a voice in this country no one else was hearing. Seven out of 10 Americans don’t like the direction this country is going.

“Donald Trump,” he adds, “provided a lot of coattails that got a lot of people over the finish line” in Congressional races.

And he sounds a conciliatory tone. “There’s no doubt our democracy can be very messy and we do remain a sharply divided country. But now, as we do every four years, we have to work to heal the divisions of a long campaign.”

Kaine: ‘Last night, Hillary won the popular vote of Americans’

Hillary Clinton’s running mate Tim Kaine praises Clinton’s accomplishments as a woman at the rarefied heights of American politics.

“Last night, she won the popular vote of Americans. That is an amazing accomplishment.”

He offers a subtle dig at Trump: “Nobody had to wonder about Hillary if she would accept an outcome of an election in our beautiful country. Nobody had to doubt it.

“She’s in love with [America]. That love of country I think is obvious to everyone.”

Clinton concedes: ‘We owe Trump an open mind and the chance to lead’

In a painful, sometimes choking concession speech, Hillary Clinton sounds a conciliatory tone.

“Last night I congratulated Donald Trump and offered to work with him,” she says to supporters in New York.

“I hope he will be a successful president for all Americans.

“I’m sorry that we did not win this election for the values we share and the vision we hold for our country, but I feel pride and gratitude for this wonderful campaign we built together, this vast, diverse, creative, unruly, energized campaign. You represent the best of America and being your candidate is one of the greatest honors of my life.”

Hillary Clinton, with husband Bill Clinton, giving a concession speech in New York on November 9, 2016. (screen capture: CNN)

Hillary Clinton, with husband Bill Clinton, giving a concession speech in New York on November 9, 2016. (screen capture: CNN)

She turns to her supporters: “I know how disappointed you feel, because I feel it too, and so do tens of millions of Americans who invested their dreams in this effort. This is painful and it will be for a long time.”

But, she adds, “this was never about a single person.”

“We have seen that our nation is more deeply divided than we thought. But I believe in America. Donald Trump is going to be our president. We owe him an open mind and the chance to lead.

“Our constitutional democracy enshrines the peaceful transfer of power. And we don’t just respect that, we cherish it.”

US envoy to Israel Dan Shapiro wishes Trump success

The American ambassador to Israel, Dan Shapiro, a longtime adviser to President Barack Obama, offers his congratulations Wednesday to President-elect Donald Trump.

He tweets: “Congratulations to President-elect Donald Trump on his election. I wish him success in working on behalf of all Americans.”

Obama: ‘We are all rooting for Trump’s success’

US President Barack Obama spoke to a sense of shock among Democrats.

“Yesterday I said the sun would come up in the morning. That’s one bit of prognosticating that actually came true. The sun is up,” he quipped.

Turning to Trump’s election victory, he says, “I had a chance to talk to President-elect Donald Trump last night, at about 3 a.m., and had a chance to invite him to come to the White House tomorrow.

“It’s no secret that the president-elect and I have some pretty significant differences,” he says, but adds that the same was true in 2008 when he took over the White House from George W. Bush.

“We are now all rooting for his success in uniting and leading this country,” Obama says of Trump, continuing the tone set by the defeated Hillary Clinton earlier today.

“The peaceful transition of power is one of the hallmarks of our democracy, and over the next few months we are going to show that to the world,” he promises.

He praises Clinton’s “extraordinary life of public service. I’m proud of her. A lot of Americans look up to her. Her candidacy and nomination was historic and sends a message to our daughters all over the country.”

And he addresses all Americans: “We’re actually all on one team. This is an intramural scrimmage. We’re not Democrats first, not Republicans first. We’re patriots first. We all want what’s best for this country. That’s what I heard from Mr. Trump’s remarks last night, in our conversation. And I’m heartened by that.

“A lot of our fellow Americans are exulting today, a lot less so. But that’s the nature of campaigns. It’s hard, and sometimes contentious and noisy. It’s not always inspiring. But to the young people who got into politics for the first time and may be disappointed with the results, I just want you to know, you have to stay encouraged. Don’t get cynical, don’t ever think you can’t make a difference. Fighting for what’s right is important.”

AIPAC congratulates Trump, sees ‘most pro-Israel Congress ever’

AIPAC, the largest and most influential group advocating for a stronger US-Israel relationship in Washington, formally congratulates President-elect Donald Trump.

“AIPAC congratulates President-elect Donald Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence on their election victory,” the group says in a statement. “We also congratulate the elected and re-elected senators and representatives who will be part of the most pro-Israel Congress ever, and look forward to working with them and the new administration to further strengthen the US-Israel relationship.”

The group reminds Trump of comments he made at the group’s policy conference in March:

On the importance of the relationship:
“We will send a clear signal that there is no daylight between America and our most reliable ally, the state of Israel.”

On the importance of stopping Iran’s regional aggression and holding Iran accountable to prevent the regime from attaining nuclear weapons:
“We must enforce the terms of the previous deal to hold Iran totally accountable…We will totally dismantle Iran’s global terror network. Iran has seeded terror groups all over the world.”

Trump invites Netanyahu to visit Washington, PM says

US President-elect Donald Trump speaks with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on the phone Wednesday and invites the Israeli leader to Washington at the “first opportunity,” according to the Prime Minister’s Office.

Trump and Netanyahu, “who have known each other for many years, had a warm, cordial conversation,” the statement says. “President-elect Trump invited Prime Minister Netanyahu to a meeting in the United States at the first opportunity.”

Netanyahu responds by saying that his wife Sara is also looking forward to meeting Melania Trump.

Regional issues are also raised during the phone conversation, the statement says without elaborating.

George W. Bush didn’t vote for Trump, but congratulates him

Another former president Bush is congratulating Donald Trump on winning the race for the White House.

George W. Bush says in a statement that he called Trump Wednesday. He says he and his wife, Laura, wished the president-elect and his family “our very best as they take on an awesome responsibility.”

Bush adds: “We pray for the success of our country and the success of our new president.”

A spokesman says Bush and his wife didn’t vote for Trump when casting early ballots for Tuesday’s election.

Bush’s father, George H.W. Bush, also called and congratulated Trump on Wednesday.

— AP

Canada prepares welcome mat for American ‘asylum seekers’

Predictions of an American exodus under a Donald Trump presidency were largely viewed as tongue in cheek during the campaign.

Canadians greeted the prospect of American refugees with their typical quirky humor, eagerly touting the country’s healthcare system, poutine, maple syrup and “the good side of the Niagara Falls.”

But as it became clear late Tuesday that Trump was on a sure path to the White House, interest in moving to Canada spiked and crashed the country’s immigration website.

“I think it’s an emotional reaction. I don’t know if they’ll follow through,” Ottawa immigration lawyer Julie Taub told AFP on Wednesday, hours after Trump was declared the president-elect.

“It’s unlikely that a flood of Americans would arrive at the border seeking asylum.”

However, Taub and other immigration lawyers said they received several inquiries from Americans as they arrived at the office in the morning.

Over the past year, Canadian real estate agencies and regions with sparse populations used the US election to launch marketing campaigns to attract newcomers.

“Move to beautiful Nunavut,” said a Twitter message on Wednesday, hyping the Arctic territory’s pristine environment and “10 months of winter each year.”

The island of Cape Breton in Nova Scotia on Canada’s east coast welcomed Americans under the slogan, “Cape Breton if Donald Trump wins.”


Guatemala asks Trump to guarantee ‘protection’ of migrants

Guatemala on Wednesday asks Donald Trump to ensure the “protection” of migrants in the United States, fearing his campaign promise to deport undocumented foreigners.

“Guatemala hopes that the actions his administration will take will allow recognition of the precious contribution migrants make to the United States, and that his policies promote and ensure the respect, well-being and protection of the migrant population,” the country’s foreign ministry says in a statement.

During his campaign for the US presidency, Trump vowed to deport millions of migrants who did not have papers to legally live in America, and said he would jail any deported illegal migrant who attempted to return.

He also repeatedly promised to build a wall across the US-Mexican border to prevent such immigration.

The United States has an estimated 11 million undocumented migrants, the overwhelming majority from Latin America, especially Mexico and Central America.

Guatemalan authorities say around 1.5 million Guatemalans live in the United States, of whom less than a third are legal residents.

Much of Guatemala’s economy depends on remittances US-based Guatemalans send back to their families.


Philadelphia sees incidents of neo-Nazi pro-Trump graffiti

The day after Donald Trump won the presidency, some neo-Nazi vandals have painted swastikas and other anti-Semitic graffiti around the Philadelphia area, Philly Voice reports.

Private prison stocks surge on Trump win

Shares of private prison companies see prices surge Wednesday on expectations President-elect Donald Trump will reverse the Obama administration’s move to scale back use of these firms at federal facilities.

Shares of Corrections Corporation of America and the GEO Group soar 48.1 percent and 20.8%, respectively, in afternoon trading after the surprise victory by Republican candidate Trump, who has said he favors the use of private prisons.

The gains are a reversal from August, when shares of the companies plummeted after the Justice Department announced it would stop renewing contracts with the private prison companies.

The goal was “reducing — and ultimately ending — our use of privately owned prisons,” Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates said in a memo.

The department had found that private prisons were costly and more dangerous than those in public hands.

The decision was expected to affect 13 privately run prisons housing just over 22,000 people, or about 11% of the federal prison population. Most of those inmates are foreign nationals, mainly Mexicans incarcerated for immigration violations.

Trump said during a public event in March that the US prison system was a “disaster” but private prisons “seem to work a lot better” than public institutions.


EU invites Trump to summit, warns against ‘isolation’

The EU’s top leaders on Wednesday invite US President-elect Donald Trump to a summit as soon as possible as they warn of uncertainty in relations and a need to respect democratic values.

“I do not believe that any country today can be great in isolation,” European Council chief Donald Tusk tells reporters in Brussels, referring to Trump’s campaign slogan of “Make America Great Again.”

“Europe and the United States simply have no option but to cooperate as closely as possible.”

Tusk and European Commission boss Jean-Claude Juncker say in a letter that they want to discuss “unprecedented challenges” including the Islamic State jihadist group, the conflict in Ukraine, and a troubled EU-US trade deal under negotiation.

“We would take this opportunity to invite you to visit Europe for an EU-US summit at your earliest convenience. This conversation would allow for us to chart the course of our relations for the next four years,” they say in a letter of congratulations to Trump.

But former Polish prime minister Tusk strikes a more sober tone in a statement to journalists at the 28-nation European Union’s headquarters as he recalls that “Italians, Irish, Poles, Germans, Spanish” had helped build America.

“While respecting the democratic choice of the American people, we are at the same time aware of the new challenges that these results bring. One of them is this moment of uncertainty over the future of our transatlantic relations,” he says.

With the EU still reeling from the shock of Britain’s recent vote to leave, Tusk adds: “The events of the last months and days should be treated as a warning sign for all who believe in liberal democracy.”

Juncker later says in a speech in Berlin that the EU should not “upend its relations with the United States” out of “annoyance” with the shock outcome of the presidential election.

“We remain partners because the world needs the United States and the European continent working side-by-side. That is why I strongly urge us to seek common ground,” he says.

Following Trump’s victory, EU foreign ministers will hold a special meeting in Brussels on Sunday at the invitation of the bloc’s foreign policy supremo Federica Mogherini.


Elizabeth Warren proposes truce with Trump

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren is proposing that she and President-elect Donald Trump “put aside our differences” and work together to rebuild the American economy for working people.

A favorite of liberals, Warren has waged a bitter war of words with Trump. She’s called him a “pathetic coward” and worse on Twitter. He’s nicknamed her “Pocahontas” — a reference to claims she made about being part Native American.

As recently as Monday, Trump called Warren a “terrible person,” “a terrible human being” and a “terrible senator.”

In a statement Wednesday, Warren says the integrity of US democracy is more important than an individual election. She says she hopes Trump will fulfill the role of president “with respect and concern for every single person in this country, no matter who they are.”

— AP

Trump begins to receive secret security briefings

The White House says the President’s Daily Brief and other intelligence materials are now being made available to President-elect Donald Trump, Vice President-elect Mike Pence and other members of Trump’s transition team.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest says it’s a courtesy that former President George W. Bush extended to President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and a few aides as they were preparing to take office.

The President’s Daily Brief is a classified document delivered to the president each morning. Until his victory Tuesday, Trump had received some classified briefings but not as extensive as what he’ll now be receiving.

Earnest says it’s part of Obama’s efforts to ensure a smooth transition.

— AP

Trump spends day after election holed up in Trump Tower

Donald Trump is spending the day after winning the presidency holed up in Trump Tower, where sleep-deprived aides appear jubilant as they come and go.

The usually buzzing lobby of Trump’s residence and campaign headquarters is currently closed to the general public, though an impersonator of the famous “Naked Cowboy” — wearing a robe — was at one point spotted strolling through.

The scene outside is chaotic, with protesters and a mass of press gathered in penned-off area. Curious onlookers are clogging foot traffic as they pause to take in the scene.

The east side of Manhattan’s busy Fifth Avenue between 56th and 57th is also closed to the public with dump trucks filled with dirt forming a protective barrier outside the building’s lobby.

— AP

Minnesota elects first Somali-American Muslim woman lawmaker

Minnesota voters elect the first Somali-American Muslim woman legislator in a state where the uneasy assimilation of large numbers of Somali refugees became an issue in the US presidential campaign.

Ilhan Omar, a 33-year-old former refugee who wears the hijab, ran uncontested for a seat in the legislature of the Midwestern state, home to a sizeable Somali population.

Her victory is notable in a campaign season that saw Republican Donald Trump disparage Muslim immigrants and refugees before going on to win the White House.

“Even though his message is supposed to function as a fear element in making sure that we don’t vote, so we don’t see ourselves as part of the American system, it’s had the opposite effect,” Omar tells AFP about Trump.

In the campaign’s final week the real estate magnate had blamed the Somali community for Minnesota’s travails.

“Here in Minnesota, you’ve seen firsthand the problems caused with faulty refugee vetting, with very large numbers of Somali refugees coming into your state without your knowledge, without your support or approval,” Trump told a rally near Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.

“Some of them (are) joining ISIS (the Islamic State group) and spreading their extremist views all over our country and all over the world.”


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