America’s voters will back Hillary Clinton for president - but the outrage of Donald Trump’s campaign makes them feel better about their own opinions.
That is the view of Sunderland University’s senior lecturer in American History in the run up to tomorrow’s election, with the result expected the next day.
Dr Kevin Yuill has been closely following the campaign between Democrat Clinton and Republican Trump as they vie to take on the role of the President of the United States from Democrat Barack Obama.
The run up to the election has been among the most controversial in America’s history, with Clinton’s use of a private email server under investigation by the FBI, while Trump has provoked outrage through his attitudes towards women, abortion and a proposal to build a wall between the country and Mexico.
Dr Yuill believes Clinton, whose roots lead back to Oxhill in County Durham, where her great grandfather was a pitman, will claim victory - but that lasting damage has been caused by the build up to polling day.
He said: “I suspect Hilary Clinton is going to win.
Nobody really wants Trump, but people are very angry at Hillary Clinton because she represents the worst of the Barack Obama administration.Dr Kevin Yuill
“Of course the US has a system of electoral college, and that’s crucial.
“In order for her to win there are 270 college votes and they are at about 90% in her favour as it stands.
“Having said that, everybody who has taken the indications from the polls in the last two years has got it wrong.
“I think she will win in most states, as it’s a first past the post system, so they have to take at least 51% of the vote.
“For my money, I don’t think the emails will make much difference, although there has always been an air of conspiracy about US politics.
“Nobody really wants Trump, but people are very angry at Hillary Clinton because she represents the worst of the Barack Obama administration.
“As Secretary of State, drone bombings have gone up 10 times.”
The hard-fought and divisive election battle could also have a long term impact on the country.
“I think it will damage politics, particularly, as I suspect, if she squeaks it, and I think she’s alienated a huge number of Trump supporters and created a cultural divide by saying they are completely different,” added Dr Yuill.
“If Trump is elected, it will be an interesting situation, particularly in congress. It could be gridlock, while Hillary would have control of the senate.
“In Trump’s case, most of his supporters don’t agree with him really, but they like what he’s saying because it they feel good that they can express their opinion.
“I think his strategy is to be shocking.”
Dr Yuill, who is from Winnipeg in Canada and has lived in Britain for the last 33 years, has a number of Americans in his class who like him will be following the results carefully as they come in.
He said: “I think most of them don’t back Trump, but I think none of them are Hillary keeners either that I have come across.”
Dr Yuill, who has been in Sunderland for the last 16 years, has broad teaching and research interests, including assisted suicide, capital punishment and gun controls.
He is currently researching the 1924 American Immigration Act and its relationship to American identity and race relations.
He also has an interest in the US civil rights movement, post-war American liberalism, and the presidencies of Richard Nixon and Lyndon Johnson.