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Trump wins Electoral College vote; some electors break ranks

SEATTLE/AUSTIN, Texas--Republican Donald Trump prevailed in U.S. Electoral College voting on Monday, Dec. 19, to officially win election as the next president, easily dashing long-shot hopes by a small movement of detractors to block him from gai...

Colorado Electoral College electors Ann Knollman, left, and Sen. Polly Baca display certificates of the election after voting at the State Capitol in Denver Dec. 19, 2016. REUTERS/Rick Wilking
Colorado Electoral College electors Ann Knollman, left, and Sen. Polly Baca display certificates of the election after voting at the State Capitol in Denver Dec. 19, 2016. REUTERS/Rick Wilking

SEATTLE/AUSTIN, Texas-Republican Donald Trump prevailed in U.S. Electoral College voting on Monday, Dec. 19, to officially win election as the next president, easily dashing long-shot hopes by a small movement of detractors to block him from gaining the White House.

Trump garnered more than the 270 electoral votes required to win, even as at least half a dozen U.S. electors broke with tradition to vote against their own state's directives, the largest number of "faithless electors" seen in more than a century.

A core of Democratic activists around the country had hoped to convince Republicans to cross lines and vote for Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, who won the nationwide popular vote on Nov. 8.

In the end, however, more Democrats than Republicans split with their party. Four Democratic electors voted for someone other than Clinton, while two Republicans turned their backs on Trump.

Bret Chiafalo, 38, of Everett, Wash., was one of three electors from his state to vote for Colin Powell, a former Republican secretary of state, rather than Clinton, saying he believed Powell was better suited for the job than Trump.

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The founding fathers "said the electoral college was not to elect a demagogue, was not to elect someone influenced by foreign powers, was not to elect someone who is unfit for office. Trump fails on all three counts, unlike any candidate we've ever seen in American history," Chiafalo said in an interview.

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