America rocked by nationwide protests as Donald Trump celebrates election victory

Updated: 
USA-ELECTION/PROTEST


Thousands of protesters flooded city streets across America to condemn Donald Trump's election in demonstrations that showed the raw divisions exposed by the presidential race.

From New England to heartland cities like Kansas City and along the West Coast, demonstrators carried flags and anti-Trump signs, disrupting traffic and declaring that they refused to accept the Republican's triumph.

The only violence was reported in Oakland, California, during a protest that began shortly before midnight. Some demonstrators set rubbish bins on fire, broke windows and sprayed graffiti at five businesses. No arrests were made.

In Chicago, where large crowds recently poured into the streets to celebrate the Chicago Cubs' first World Series victory in over a century, several thousand people marched through the Loop.

They gathered outside Trump Tower, chanting: "Not my president!"

(Jeff Chiu AP/PA)
Trump has fought one of the most divisive election campaigns in recent American history, garnering support among the white working class (Jeff Chiu AP/PA)

Chicago resident Michael Burke said the president-elect will "divide the country and stir up hatred" and added there was a constitutional duty not to accept that outcome.

A similar protest in Manhattan drew about 1,000 people. Outside Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue, police installed barricades to keep the demonstrators at bay.

Hundreds of demonstrators gathered near Philadelphia's City Hall despite chilly, wet weather, while in Boston, thousands of anti-Trump protesters streamed through the city chanting "Trump's a racist" and carrying signs that said "Impeach Trump".

(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
Protesters in Seattle bore placards reading: "Not my president" (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Protests flared at universities in California and Connecticut, while several hundred people marched in San Francisco and others gathered outside City Hall in Los Angeles.

And they spread south to Richmond, Virginia, and to middle American cities like Kansas City and Omaha, Nebraska, while hundreds of University of Texas students spilled out of classrooms to march through Austin.

Marchers chanted and carried signs in front of the Trump International Hotel in Washington, DC, while another group stood outside the White House.

There were also protests in Portland, Oregon, San Francisco and Seattle, where police said a shooting that left five people seriously injured was not connected to the rally.

(Hayne Palmour IV/The San Diego Union-Tribune via AP/PA)
San Diego was one of a number of Californian cities that saw marches against Trump's election (Hayne Palmour IV/The San Diego Union-Tribune via AP/PA)

Back in New York, several groups of protesters caused massive gridlock as police mobilised to contain them under a light rain.

They held signs that read "Trump Makes America Hate" and chanted "hey, hey, ho, ho Donald Trump has got to go" and "Impeach Trump".

However Republicans claimed a mandate for the president-elect, and an emotional Hillary Clinton earlier told crestfallen supporters he deserved a "chance to lead".

President Barack Obama pledged a smooth transition of power, and has invited the man he had declared unfit for the presidency to the White House on Thursday.

(Matt Weigand AP/PA)
Two people hold an American Flag upside down, which reads, "Abolish Amerikkka" during an anti-Trump rally at the University of Michigan on Wednesday (Matt Weigand AP/PA)

"We are now all rooting for his success in uniting and leading the country," the president said of Trump, who spent years questioning Obama's birthplace and challenging the legitimacy of his presidency.

Trump was uncharacteristically quiet in the aftermath of his triumph and made no public appearances on Wednesday.

He huddled with jubilant advisers at his skyscraper in Manhattan, beginning the daunting task of setting up an administration that will take power in just over two months.

He also met Vice President-elect Mike Pence and took calls from supporters, family and friends, according to spokeswoman Hope Hicks.

(Jay Janner AP/PA)
Hundreds of students gather along Congress Avenue in Austin, Texas (Jay Janner AP/PA)

In Washington, Trump's transition team sprang into action, looking through personnel lists for senior jobs and working through handover plans for government agencies.

Trump was expected to consider several loyal supporters for senior jobs, including former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani for attorney general or national security adviser.

After struggling for months with Trump's takeover of their party, Republican leaders embraced the businessman in victory.

House Speaker Paul Ryan, who was lukewarm in his support throughout the campaign, praised him for pulling off "the most incredible political feat I have seen in my lifetime".

(Stephanie Yao Long AP/PA)
Protesters block central traffic lanes in downtown Portland, Oregan late on Tuesday (Stephanie Yao Long AP/PA)

Ryan said: "He just earned a mandate."

Indeed, Trump will take office in January with Congress fully in his party's control, giving him strength to try to pass his agenda and turn the Supreme Court in a conservative direction.

With several million votes still to be counted, Clinton held a narrow lead in the nationwide popular vote. Most of the outstanding votes appeared to be in Democratic-leaning states, with the biggest chunk in California, a state Clinton overwhelmingly won.