Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton made their final pitches Monday evening to become the 45th president of the United States. At rival late-night rallies, Trump sold Clinton as “corrupt.”
By contrast, Clinton apologized for the polarized election, calling Tuesday’s vote “the test of our time.” About 1 a.m. Tuesday, she told voters: “I want you to understand, our work together will be just beginning.”
Clinton’s hopeful and unifying message stood as a juxtaposition to Trump’s promise of revenge. “Today is our independence day,” he said, in Grand Rapids, Michigan. “Today the American working class is going to strike back.” He added, “Go to bed. Go to bed right now. Get up and vote.”
The frenzied last leg of the 2016 presidential campaign culminated after midnight Monday in rival late-night rallies coursing with anger and emotion, as Donald Trump hammered Hillary Clinton as corrupt and Clinton cast the election as “the test of our time.”
Clinton closed her campaign with an energetic rally in Raleigh, accompanied by former president Bill Clinton and their daughter Chelsea. Singer Lady Gaga performed for an audience that nearly to a person raised hands when asked how many had voted early.
North Carolina’s results are expected to be extremely close, and the surprise addition of Hillary Clinton’s midnight rally suggested a degree of worry for Democrats. After the election ends, she told voters around 1 a.m., “I want you to understand, our work together will be just beginning.”
This one’s for you, Hillary. pic.twitter.com/KtzpIpSziO
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) November 7, 2016
Meanwhile, Trump took the stage at his final pre-election rally in Grand Rapids, Mich., at 12:30 a.m. Tuesday morning — capping a five-state final push that started in Florida on Monday morning and weaved tthroughNorth Carolina, Pennsylvania and New Hampshire.
“Today is our independence day. Today the American working class is going to strike back,” he told the late-night audience that gathered at a convention center to hear him speak.
TODAY WE MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 8, 2016
Well before Trump was done speaking, a substantial portion of Trump’s crowd started making its way toward the exits.
In his remarks, the Republican nominee said it was “almost hard to believe” that Election Day had arrived, as he reflected back to the beginning of the Republican primary and the many candidates he faced and eventually defeated.
“Now we have one flawed candidate left to beat,” he said. Before finishing, he told voters: “Go to bed. Go to bed right now, get up and vote.”
Clinton ended her presidential bid with a tableau of Democratic stars, warning more than 33,000 supporters who gathered in Philadelphia on Monday that “every issue that you care about is at stake.”
Joined there by President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama, the Democratic nominee pivoted away from the email controversy that dogged much of her campaign and cast the election as a choice “between division and unity.”
“We choose to believe in a hopeful, inclusive, big-hearted America,” she said.
Her message was echoed by Obama, who told the massive crowd, “I’m betting that tomorrow you will reject fear and you will choose hope.”