Clinton urges her supporters to give Trump a chance in emotional concession speech
November 09, 2016 12:21 PM EST
Hillary Clinton was composed but emotional as she publicly conceded the presidential race to Donald Trump on Wednesday afternoon, urging her supporters to give the new-president elect a chance before devolving into absolute despair.
"We must accept this result," Clinton told a crowd of staffers and supporters. "Donald Trump is going to be our president."
"We owe him an open mind and the chance to lead. Our constitutional democracy enshrines the peaceful transfer of power. And we don’t just respect that. We cherish it."
'I hope he will be a successful president'
"I hope he will be a successful president for all Americans," Clinton said of her opponent, whom she traded nasty barbs with throughout the course of the campaign.
"I'm sorry we did not win this election for the values we share and we hold for our country," she said. "I feel pride and gratitude for this wonderful campaign that we built together."
A difficult speech
It was clearly a difficult speech for the former secretary of state, who polls and pundits had predicted would win the election.
Clinton had prepared to win, too -- she reportedly already had a transition team in place for her eventual White House. She even had held her Election Night party in a building with a literal glass ceiling, fully expecting to announce that she had shattered it.
I know how disappointed you feel, because I feel it too.
'This is painful'
But the American electorate had other plans. The Associated Press called the race for Trump early Wednesday morning.
"This is painful, and it will be for a long time," Clinton said, choking back tears.
Clinton attempted to instill hope into her supporters after a disappointing result.
A disappointing outcome
Still, the outcome was a disappointment to Democrats, who had hoped not only to extend President Obama's progressive legacy, but to make history by electing the first female president.
The loss of the latter was not lost on Clinton.
"I know we have still not shattered that highest and hardest glass ceiling, but someday someone will and hopefully sooner than we might think right now," she said.
A message to little girls
"And to all of the little girls who are watching this, never doubt that you are valuable and powerful and deserving of every chance and opportunity in the world to pursue and achieve your own dreams," Clinton continued.
"I still believe, as deeply as I ever have, that if we stand together and work together with respect for our differences, strengthen our convictions, and love for this nation, our best days are still ahead of us."
Take a look back at Clinton, from her days as the First Lady of Arkansas to the 2016 campaign.