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Donald Trump takes White House without Michigan's help

Donald Trump was able to take enough votes in the race for the U.S presidency without the help of Michigan, a longtime Democratic stronghold that appeared to be a key to victory for the Republican candidate.

Republican candidate takes enough votes to win without Democratic stronghold

Democrats in Michigan gathered at the MGM Casino in Detroit to watch the election results. (Alex Brockman/CBC)

Donald Trump was able to take enough votes in the race for the U.S presidency without the help of Michigan voters, a longtime Democratic stronghold that appeared to be a key to victory for the Republican candidate. 

Trump rode an astonishing wave of support from voters seeking sweeping change, capitalizing on voters' economic anxieties, taking advantage of racial tensions and overcoming a string of sexual assault allegations en route to the White House.

As results came in late Tuesday and into Wednesday, Michigan — and its 16 votes in the Electoral College — were watched as a way for Hillary Clinton to block Trump's run at the presidency. 

Buoyed by high levels of support in Michigan's suburbs and rural counties, Trump appears to have won Michigan by 13,225 votes, a margin of less than three-tenths of a per cent, out of more than 4.8 million cast, according to unofficial results posted late Wednesday morning by the state, according to the Detroit Free Press.

Regardless, Trump took more than the 270 Electoral College votes needed to secure the presidency.

The hall at the MGM Grand Casino in Detroit was empty in the early hours Wednesday as Democrats learned of a Donald Trump victory. (Alex Brockman/CBC)

The Michigan Democratic viewing party in Detroit turned from a coronation into a sombre waiting room, with hopes of a Clinton victory falling further and further from view by the hour. By the time security closed the doors at the hotel hosting the event, there were more reporters than supporters left in the cavernous hall.

During the night, election coverage from the U.S networks played on a projector. They featured news reports of stricken Democrats from across the country.

Many in the hall were drinking. Bartenders said the bar was busy throughout the night, with a few people being heard saying, "I need a drink."

Democrats in Michigan stayed up late to watch live election results, but for some, that proved challenging. (Alex Brockman/CBC)

Robert Sanks, a Clinton volunteer, spoke with CBC News Monday before the election and early Wednesday morning as the result hung in the balance.

"It's getting close, but I think Ms. Clinton will still pull it out," Sanks said. Contemplating a Trump victory, Sanks said he would have to pray for his country's future.

"I'd hope and pray that some of the things I thought about Trump turn out to be not true," he said.

Though most supporters left before 2 a.m. Wednesday morning, reporters covering the event remained into the early morning hours. (Alex Brockman/CBC)
 

After the election was called, CBC News met Trump supporter Michael Gooch. Though he was unable to register to vote, he said he's hopeful for the future of the country. 

"It's promising," he said, "I just want to wait and see how he handles the situation. Right now, the country is fed up with the politics. The promises that never happened. I look forward to someone who tells the truth."