CNN's Van Jones: 'White-lash' Against a Changing U.S. Led to Trump's Win

Jones' commentary sums up the fear and pain of many Americans as a result of Tuesday's election — a "nightmare."

UPDATED: Nov. 10, 2016, 7:50 a.m. ET


Jones' commentary sums up the fear and pain of many Americans as a result of Tuesday's election — a "nightmare."

By Sheryl Estrada

Republican candidate Donald Trump defeated former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Tuesday's presidential election. He is the first person to win a U.S. presidency without having served in the U.S. Armed Forces or having held elected office.

CNN commentator Van Jones gave an emotional commentary Tuesday night on the pain many Americans are feeling due to Trump's win. Jones brought the issue of race to the forefront. He called the win "white-lash" against a changing country and eight years of President Barack Obama in office.

"People have talked about a miracle," Jones said. "I'm hearing about a nightmare.

"It's hard to be a parent tonight for a lot of us. You tell your kids, 'Don't be a bully.'

You tell your kids, 'Don't be a bigot.' You tell your kids, 'Do your homework and be prepared.'

"And then you have this outcome of people putting children to bed tonight and they're afraid of breakfast. They're afraid of, 'How do I explain this to my children?'

"I have Muslim friends who are texting me tonight saying, 'Should I leave the country?' I have families with immigrants that are terrified tonight.

"This was many things. This was a rebellion against the elites. True. It was a complete reinvention of politics and polls. It's true.

Related Story: Luke Visconti, CEO: Trump and the Destruction of the Republican Party

"But it was also something else. We've talked about everything but race tonight … this was a white-lash. White-lash against a changing country. It was a white-lash against a Black president, in part. And, that's the part where the pain comes.

"And Donald Trump has a responsibility tonight to come out and reassure people that he is going to be the president of all the people he insulted and offended and brushed aside.

"When you say you want to take your country back, you've got a lot of people who feel that we're not represented well either. But we don't want to feel that someone has been elected by throwing away some of us to appeal more deeply to others.

"This is a deeply painful moment tonight. I know it's not just about race. There's more going on than that, but race is here too and we have to talk about it."

Jones further elaborated on his views Wednesday night in a Facebook live video.

Trump, who said in his victory speech "I will be president for all Americans," earned the votes of 63 percent of white men and 53 percent of white women.

"Trump did best among white voters without a college degree, beating Clinton by the enormous margin of 72 percent to 23 percent," according to a CBS News exit poll.

He also won among white, non-college-educated women 62 to 34 percent and white, college-educated men 54 to 39 percent.

Millions of white, working-class voters who live in rural and suburban areas across the country voted for Trump. In Ohio, a larger percentage of non-college-educated white voters than in most other parts of the country voted for the businessman and reality TV star.

Trump rode a wave of anger toward Washington insiders. His voters felt alienated by globalization and cultural change, and many also had racist ideals as he had the support of white supremacists.

Related Story: U.K.'s Vote a Warning to U.S.

The demographics for Trump voters mirror those in favor of the Brexit vote, the successful campaign to get Britain out of the European Union, which he praised. The vote occurred in June.

The Trump campaign held a rally in August in Jackson, Mississippi, a predominantly Black city. His headline guest speaker was Nigel Farage, an anti-immigration key figure in the Brexit vote.

Trump tweeted on August 18:

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