As the dust settled on the US election GRAEME COUSINS spoke to people in Belfast city centre who gave their reaction to the news that Donald Trump had beaten Hillary Clinton to become the 45th US president
Not surprisingly, people in Belfast on Wednesday morning were more than willing to share their thoughts on the election of controversial candidate Donald Trump as US president.
Few were shocked by his win, though many were fearful of just what the business tycoon turned politician is capable of while in power.
Andy Harper, a 35-year-old from Lisburn, said: “I’m not surprised Trump won after the result of the Brexit vote. It was a similar sort of vote.
“It will be very interesting to see what happens. He could be quite awful or just alright. You wouldn’t know.
“He won’t make any friends with the rest of the world apart from Russia.
“I don’t really care to be perfectly honest. I’ve friends going on rants on Facebook about Trump and Brexit but for me the world goes on.”
Hugh Stevenson from Ballynure said: “It was a case of two bad candidates. I think we got the worst.”
The 63-year-old added: “Hillary Clinton made a big mistake by having Bill around. He should have been kept out of it. American people will remember when he was in power and that will have counted against Hillary.
“Thankfully Trump is only a figurehead. He doesn’t have his finger on the button.”
Naomi O’Neill, who is planning a trip to America next year, said: “When you look at the outgoing president Obama and what he has done for the country and then you look at Trump it’s scary.”
The 21-year-old added: “I’m going to America in March and it’s going to be a very different place then.
“Someone in a position of power who is filled with that much hatred will only crank up hatred further.”
Chris Stevenson from Lurgan is interested to see if Donald Trump makes good on his election promises.
The 50-year-old said: “He just comes across as totally bonkers. He’s made all kinds of promises, let’s see how he delivers.
“I’d like to see how he’s going to get the people of Mexico to pay for this wall.
“His first job when he takes up office in January will be to get a new FBI director.
“As the oldest elected president you’d think when you get to that age you’d want a stress-free life.”
When asked if Trump’s presidency could have an impact in Northern Ireland, Mr Stevenson said: “It could have an economic effect. He’s going to focus on keeping business in America.
“Although he’ll maybe come back and build that golf course now.”
Carson Tate from Ballynahinch said he’d taken little interest in the election. When the News Letter informed him that Donald Trump had won, he said that was the first he had heard though he guessed that would be the result.
“I’ve never taken an interest in politics, not even local politics,” said the 60-year-old.
“Politicians are all tarred with the same brush.”
Jenny McBride from Cookstown said: “I feel the world has changed from this day onwards.
“How does a businessman with no political experience become president of the US?
“Not only is he the president, but I lost a night’s sleep sitting up to watch it last night,” said the 43-year-old.
“I would have liked to see Hillary win. She was the lesser of two evils. At least she was a politician. Yes, she had a few black marks against her, but I’d have preferred someone with experience.
“Donald Trump is like the dog chasing the car. Now he’s caught it he doesn’t know what to do.
“It doesn’t augur well for the rest of the world.
“Having won the presidency it says it all that the first world leader to congratulate him was Putin. The rest have been very quiet.”
Wendy Houston, 58, from Holywood commented: “I’m not shocked. I think it was going to be inevitable.
“The media played a big role in Trump’s campaign. They helped him to push his agenda.
“Thankfully he’s only one person. There’s a lot of other people behind him, working with him, who know what they’re doing.
“He’s calmed down a lot since the start of the campaign.”
Kay Todd, 34, from Newtownards, commented: “He’ll either be assassinated or start a nuclear war.”