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Trump or Clinton – US takes to the polls

trump - clinton - us elections
Trump or Clinton  – Millions of American voters are to cast their ballots on Tuesday to elect their 45th President.

Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump

The race is between Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump. The electorate will have to choose between the colourful billionaire, who has confounded political scientists with his success despite everything he says and does, and the seasoned career politician, who could become the first woman in history to ever be called US Commander-in-Chief.

While elections can be full of surprises – and this one is tight – most analysts give a slight edge to Clinton.

Security across the country will be on high alert through election day.

Starting in 1792, US presidents and vice presidents have been elected quadrennially on election day, the first Tuesday after the first Monday of November.

US voters only cast their ballots for a slate of electors of the US Electoral College, who in turn elect the president and vice president.

The current US presidential election system, featuring the Electoral College, was originally established by Article Two of the US Constitution, as a result of a compromise between those who wanted the US Congress to choose the president and those who preferred a national popular vote.

The whole process of the presidential election can be divided into four phases, namely, the primary elections, the nominating conventions, the presidential nominee campaigns and the national vote.

During the nomination race, usually from January to June of an election year, primaries and caucuses are held in 50 states, the District of Columbia and all US territories to elect a presidential nominee for each major political party.

After securing the party nomination, each party’s de facto presidential nominee chooses a vice presidential nominee to run with him or her.

The pair receive their official nominations at their party’s national conventions, which take place during the summer of the election year.

Between the conventions and election day, all presidential candidates run their campaigns nationally, holding rallies, running ads and giving interviews. They have to repeatedly adjust and state their policies and stances to address concerns of voters at home and abroad, and face challenges from rivals. They also face off in televised debates, usually three times between presidential candidates and one between vice presidential candidates.

The new president and vice president are meant to be sworn in on January 20 next year. – SAnews.gov.za-Xinhua

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