Somber reaction in Aspen to presidential results
The Aspen Times
Pitkin County results*
Hillary Clinton: 7,239
Donald Trump: 2,522
Gary Johnson: 366
Jill Stein: 181
* Pitkin County Clerk and Recorder results as of midnight Wednesday.
The mood was anything but celebratory at the Aspen Young Professionals Association’s election watch party at Belly Up on Tuesday night, where all eyes in the room were glued to the projection screen.
“We were definitely expecting more of a social scene,” said Aspen Young Professionals Association President Ashley Feddersen, noting her surprise at how close the presidential race was.
Feddersen was not alone, as nearly every local resident in the room interviewed by The Aspen Times commented on the unpredictable nature of the 2016 presidential election.
People’s clapping and cheering when Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton appeared on the screen — contrasting with the audience booing at Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump — left little guessing as to where people’s political allegiances lie.
“It seems the whole room is for Hillary,” Feddersen said. “I haven’t heard a single cheer for Trump in this location.”
Voter sentiment at Belly Up also indicated a strong inclination toward the Democratic nominee.
A distressed Lissa Ballinger said, “I’m so sad that so many people have voted for Trump. I never thought it would be this close.”
“F— Trump,” Kacey Pelletier said. “This is why I don’t have children. I’ll decide after this (election).”
Aspen resident Velvet Valentine said the way Trump wants to run America reminds her of a fascist dictatorship.
“It’s hate-based, homophobic, misogynistic,” Valentine said. “No one’s been able to tell me a good reason (to support Trump) other than they’re afraid Hillary will take their guns.
Aspen resident Marc Eberstein, the only Trump supporter in the room interviewed by The Aspen Times, said, “I just voted for him because I like him.”
When asked which of Trump’s policies he aligns or agrees with, Eberstein said he didn’t know enough of Trump’s policy specifics to comment.
“I like his spirit as a business person and I just like his personality,” Eberstein said. “I didn’t think he ever had a realistic shot. And I think a lot of other people didn’t either.”
“It’s the rebel pick,” he said, with a laugh.
On a less somber note, Feddersen said she is “incredibly proud” of the turnout among the under-40 voters throughout this election.
“I really feel there’s been a surge of participation, whether that be from (Aspen Young Professionals Association) efforts or otherwise, I don’t really care. I’m just happy it’s happening.”
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The Youth Art Expo will run Feb. 27 through March 14 at the Aspen Art Museum, showcasing work by young artists from Aspen to Rifle.