You called, we listened: What thousands of voicemails reveal about the American voter
Updated 8:22 AM ET, Tue November 22, 2016
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Devastated. Ecstatic. Afraid. Hopeful.
We asked American voters how they are feeling about the outcome of the election and their new president. You have now left us more than 8,000 voicemails. Here's what you said.
We're still listening: 646-535-9720
Marcia, a 70-year-old retired teacher, cast her vote for Obama in 2008 and 2012, because she had hope — for a better America, for a better life. That's not what she got. Marcia felt like Obama spent his time apologizing for the country, rather than loving it. The turning point for her, however, was when football players began kneeling during the National Anthem. Marcia, a lifelong Democrat who protested the Vietnam War and wasn't a fan of Ronald Reagan, says she felt like America was losing its identity.
Jermaine just graduated from college and says his generation was "apathetic" before Election Day. Now, however, he is "feeling a lot more discouraged." Growing up with a father in the military, Jermaine lived in Germany, where he says the culture was more accepting.
"As a minority, it's hard to fathom that many people in this country can disregard the needs, the feelings, the concerns of minorities," he says. "It's kind of a reality check in terms of how much work we need to do."
She voted for Trump, but says she "didn't feel good about it." She thinks it will be good for the country to "get away from big governments." What this voter is not OK with are the hate crimes and the behavior of some Trump supporters. "I just hope our country can come together and figure this out. And quite frankly, I wish Obama would stand up and make an address to the entire country — to get it together."
Editor's note: The voicemail below contains language that could be offensive to some.
Alisha is scared. She's lived in the same town her entire life and says things have gotten worse for her in the last year. She thinks some people have been emboldened by Trump. She finds herself constantly looking over her shoulder. "You don't know where you're safe anymore."
Alexis, 29, was born in the US and lives in Texas. Her parents illegally crossed the border from Mexico. Immigration was an important issue for her, and she told us she wanted the wall.
"There are good people coming over. There are also those who want to freeload."
This man says his family just "doesn't feel safe anymore." While shopping at Walmart recently, he says someone told them to "go back home." He notes that his family has been in America for "so long," and his wife was born in the United States. However, they feel "disconnected from society."
"This is not the America we want our children to grow and face," he says.
For Thomas, a 26-year-old gay man, it wasn't about social issues this election. As the son of a single father who owns a small business, Thomas saw his family struggle with the rising costs of Obamacare. Thomas says his Trump vote garnered backlash from other members of the gay community.
"I understand why people are scared or nervous, but I think they need to calm down and see what happens first."
Christine, a pastor in Idaho, says she was "enthusiastically waiting for [Clinton] to be the first woman president." She notes that she held Clinton in "high esteem for her 20 to 30 years of public service and all the good work that she's done for children and minorities." She says she could not believe that, out of more than a dozen candidates, Trump rose to the top, She says he does not reflect America.
"I know we'll get through this. I'm optimistic. But it is extremely heartbreaking."
Mike, who is Jewish and lives on Long Island, says he has been going through "ups and downs" over the past week — especially after seeing reports of swastika drawings popping up around the US. Mike has two children — 6 and 8 years old — and is struggling with how to talk to them about what's happening.
She's Mormon who grew up in Utah and lives in a community where most people voted for Trump. Amy, who has always voted Democrat, feels like an island.
But her politics have never seemed at odds with her religion. To her, the values her church teaches are love and compassion. This year, though, she feels like the church has clashed with what she's been seeing in American politics.
After the election, she been shaken by a sense of increased vulnerability — for herself as a woman, and for her teenage daughter.
Eric, who lives in Harrisburg, used to be a Democrat. He started voting Republican in 2012 — he has a growing family, and economic issues are his priority. Creating jobs in the manufacturing industry and the Affordable Care Act were two of the issues he cared about most. Under Obamacare, his family's premiums increased. Now when they visit the doctor's office, it costs $50 more.
Michael, 53, is an African-American Florida voter — and a registered Republican. He says he understands the appeal of an outsider candidate, but he's concerned about what he considers Trump's character flaws — the possible racism, sexism and xenophobia.
How are you feeling about this election? We're leaving our phone line open through Inauguration Day. Give us a call and leave us a message: 646-535-9720.