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Muslims, Mexican walls and misogyny allegations: The biggest moments of the US election

Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton had many talked-about moments during their campaigns.

Image: AP/Press Association Images

IT’S BEEN A fractious and at times shocking campaign – but any levity brought by the more bizarre antics of newly-elected US President Donald Trump was tempered today by the realisation that people were voting for him in droves.

Throughout the campaign, there have been big moments that have gotten people talking.

For Trump, they have tended to be on the bizarre and grandiose side. For Hillary, the bigger moments were fewer but were significant enough to contribute to her loss.

Trump’s ban on Muslims

It’s almost a year since Donald Trump was slammed as “facist” and “unhinged” for calling for a “total and complete” block on Muslims entering the United States. He made the comments after a mass shooting in California by a Muslim couple.

White House spokesperson John Earnest said of the December 2015 comments:

I think what Mr Trump is doing is something that he’s been doing over the course of his entire campaign, which is… to play on people’s fears in order to build support for his campaign.

“Grab her by the pussy”

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One of the most talked-about moments of the campaign came just last month, when audio of Trump making comments about women in 2005 emerged.

The audio was recorded on a ‘hot mic’ while he and Access Hollywood presenter Billy Bush were on board a bus on the way for a cameo appearance on the US soap Days of Our Lives.

Trump was recorded saying:

I’ve gotta use some tic tacs, just in case I start kissing her. You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful, I just start kissing them. I don’t even wait.
And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.
Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.

His comments were criticised as misogynistic.

Trump swiftly apologised for his comments, describing them as “locker room banter”.

Clinton’s reaction to Trump’s comments was one of revulsion.

(Click here if video doesn’t play)

Hillary Clinton’s emails

Of all the issues dominating Hillary Clinton’s campaign, the private email server was the big one.

While President Obama’s Secretary of State, Clinton had contravened official guidelines by using a personal email address (hdr22@clintonemail.com) via a private server installed in the family home in Chappaqua, New York.

The Clintons were wary of their privacy and had installed the server to deal with communications by the Clinton Foundation. But that meant that official information was now held outside US government accounts – and at risk of hackers.

Clinton handed over around half – 30,000 – of the emails to the FBI who stepped in to investigate. In July, FBI director James Comey said the bureau would not push for criminal charges against Clinton or her team.

But then it transpired that the emails had come to the attention of the FBI as part of its investigations into disgraced former congressman Anthony Weiner – who is the estranged husband of Huma Abedin, one of Clinton’s top aides.

This continued to be a massive issue for Trump during his campaign – and was one of the reasons why he described Clinton as “the most corrupt candidate ever to seek the office of the presidency”.

He also questioned exactly how thorough the FBI investigation was, and said Clinton was being “protected by a rigged system”.

In turn, the crowd at a Trump rally shouted “Lock her up!”

The Mexican wall

Talk of ‘the wall’  between the US-Mexico border began back when Trump announced his candidacy. He promised that he would deport 11 million undocumented migrants and build a wall to keep illegal immigrants out.

Then, in August, Trump met the Mexican President, Enrique Pena Nieto, and told him that both Mexico and the US have a right to build a border wall between the two countries.

What they didn’t discuss was Trump’s assertion that it is Mexico who should pay for the wall.

While Trump claimed that he could build an inexpensive “impenetrable, physical, tall” wall, costing about $10 – $12 billion, the Washington Post estimated it could in fact cost $25 million.

“Delete your account”

In one of the election’s lighter moments, Clinton – or rather, the staffer behind her Twitter account – invoked a meme to tell Trump to zip it up after he called her “crooked”:

Melania Trump’s very familiar speeches

Melania Trump – Trump’s third wife – only made two major speeches during his campaign, and the first one was enough to almost be her last.

The former model was caught in a plagiarism storm in July when she gave a speech that bore striking similarities to one given by Michelle Obama.

A section of the speech describing the values that shaped her life strongly resembled a passage from Michelle Obama’s speech to the 2008 Democratic convention.

The Trump campaign paid no heed to the comments online, only to say that the speech was a success.

However a Trump staffer later came out and said that the issue was due to her own mistake.

However, we didn’t see Melania make another speech again until last week, when she spoke at an appearance in Pennsylvania.

She got caught in yet another plagiarism storm, being accused by one of Trump’s ex-wives of using a line of hers from a 2011 interview.

Basket of deplorables

In September, Hillary Clinton used a description of Trump supporters that got people very riled up.

While speaking at the LGBT for Hillary Gala in New York, she said that to be “grossly generalistic” you could put half of Trump’s supporters into “a basket of deplorables”.

By deplorables, she meant “racists, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic – you name it”.

She later apologised for her words.

Clinton’s pneumonia

Footage filmed by a bystander of Hillary Clinton in September raised concerns when it looked like the former first lady fainted while being brought to her car.

It transpired that Clinton had pneumonia, but that news came after questions had been raised about her health. She had been seen suffering a coughing fit the previous week on board her plane.

Questions abounded over whether Clinton left it too late to say she was unwell, and whether the pneumonia masked a more serious problem.

But after that stumble, there weren’t any other major signs of her having any major medical issues.

Trump and his taxes

Controversy around Trump’s taxes abounded, leading to a report in the New York Times in October that said he could have avoided paying taxes for nearly two decades.

Donald J. Trump declared a $916 million loss on his 1995 income tax returns, a tax deduction so substantial it could have allowed him to legally avoid paying any federal income taxes for up to 18 years, records obtained by The New York Times show.
Tax experts hired by The Times to analyze Mr. Trump’s 1995 records said that tax rules especially advantageous to wealthy filers would have allowed Mr. Trump to use his $916 million loss to cancel out an equivalent amount of taxable income over an 18-year period.

For his part, Trump said that he is actual a tax law expert:

The Trump campaign attacked The Times as “an extension of the Clinton Campaign, the Democratic Party and their global special interests”.

Live: Donald Trump is in touching distance of the White House>

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