When Suzanne Schwaegler went to bed last Tuesday night, the presidential election had not been settled.
By the time she woke up Wednesday at 4 a.m., Republican Donald J. Trump had been declared the 45th president of the United States.
“I’m glad it turned out the way it did,” said Schwaegler, who lives in Boise.
Her husband, DeVon, nodded as the pair ate breakfast while the sun came up Wednesday at the Capri Restaurant in Downtown Boise. He said he was relieved to learn that not only did the New York businessman capture the White House, but Republicans maintained their majorities in the House and Senate.
“Hopefully, with the House and the Senate and the White House, they’ll be able to get together and get something done,” DeVon Schwaegler said.
The Schwaeglers and their friend, Fran Thomsen of Meridian, who joined them for breakfast, said they were glad Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence proved the pollsters wrong.
They said they felt polls suggesting a Hillary Clinton victory were weighted toward urban voters and ignored large swatches of the country that were more rural.
“They forgot about the rural communities. They forgot about all of the little people,” Thomsen said.
Anxious about Trump presidency
Twin Falls resident John Lezamiz, eating a plate of French toast one booth over, said he’s frightened by the prospects of Trump entering the White House.
“I understand that people wanted a change, but I’m scared,” he said. “I think it would be hard today to be a woman, a Latino or other minority.”
He said Trump insulted just about every group other than white Americans during the campaign. He said he hopes the new president will take a more respectful tone.
He also hopes Trump, who he said has no foreign policy experience, will find policy expects that can capably advise him.
“I just hope he surrounds himself with reasonable people,” Lezamiz said.
As a new Republican-led Congress begins work, Lezamiz said he hopes the “petty bickering” will stop and that lawmakers will get to work.
“They had better get something done. Otherwise, they won’t have any excuse,” he said.
Hopes for united nation
Mike Schindel spoke to a reporter outside Steve’s Cafe in Meridian. He said he hopes Trump works to bring a divided nation together, rather than rewarding those who helped elect him and punishing those who did not.
He also said the new president should reach out to House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, who publicly criticized Trump for some of his remarks during the campaign. Ryan drew wrath from Trump and his supporters for canceling a joint appearance and saying he would devote all of his energy in the last weeks of the campaign to re-elect House Republicans and not work on Trump’s behalf.
“I think Paul Ryan is one of the nation’s best statesmen. He should continue to be a leader,” Schindel said.
Back at the Capri, Mike Francis, the founder of Payette Brewing Co., said he was trying to get his head around the election results.
“It’s a little weird. It’s not at all what I thought would happen,” he said.
Discouraged by ‘poor losers’ and ‘classless winners’
Eating breakfast with Francis, Kainoa Lopez said he was disappointed by negative posts from both sides on Facebook when he woke up Wednesday morning.
“A lot of people don’t really have very good sportsmanship. Maybe they didn’t play enough sports growing up or something because it seemed to me like there’s a lot of poor losers out there and there’s a lot of classless winners out there, too,” Lopez said.
Lopez, who said he played a lot of sports growing up, said losing with your head held high is a good thing, as is winning with some class.
“Not everybody — I don’t think — is a racist or a bigot because Donald Trump won and they voted for him. And not everybody is for corruption because they voted for Hillary,” Lopez said.
Trump, Lopez said, started with about 3 percent support when he announced his plan to run for president. He surpassed everyone’s expectations and should be given a chance to show he can lead the country.
That said, Americans still don’t know where he stands on most issues. Lopez said he’d like to see the new president work with lawmakers from both parties.
Lopez, the founder of Bucksnort Soda Co., said he considers both Trump and Clinton winners in their lives. He even suggested that Trump offer the former secretary of state a place in his administration.
“I would love to see him make that move,” he said.