MU political science professors explain presidential results

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COLUMBIA - Amid confusion, elation and surprise over Tuesday's Election Day results, some people are looking for answers and understanding after a close 2016 presidential election between now president-elect Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.

"Well, certainly the outcome was unexpected," said University of Missouri political science professor Peverill Squire. "Most of the information we had suggested that Clinton would win, although it did appear to be tightening the last couple of days."

With numbers, surveys and data still being processed, it will be awhile before we understand how neither candidate received 50 percent of the vote.

Another political science professor said he expected Clinton to prevail.

"I thought it would be close, but I thought it would be close in the other direction," Marvin Overby said.

Overby said American elections tend to be tight, and both presidential candidates in this election were flawed. He said it's difficult for a political party to retain control of the White House three terms in a row.

Squires said the election had some resemblances to that of the 2000 contest between George W. Bush and  Al Gore.

"It's also important to keep in mind that, in terms of the national vote, Clinton actually does appear to have gotten more votes than Trump," Squire said.

However, electoral college votes made Trump the winner. Until further data and analysis come out, Squires suggests Americans take time to process the 2016 presidential election.

"I think it's going to take awhile for all of us to try to figure it out, and I don't think anybody in Washington was prepared for it either," Squire said. "I think in terms of explanations, we're all going to be scrambling and in terms of what it means going forward we'll just have to wait and see."

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