Washington: Republican Donald Trump stunned America and the world on Tuesday by winning the race to become the 45th president of the United States, sweeping a series of key battleground states and rattling world markets that had expected Democrat Hillary Clinton to defeat the political outsider.
Riding a wave of populist resentment, the Republican mogul defeated his Democratic rival, plunging global markets into turmoil and casting the long-standing global political order, which hinges on Washington`s leadership, into doubt.
Trump shattered the dreams of Hillary to become the first woman president in a bitter and divisive White House race after capturing Ohio, Florida, and other big states.
Trump has at least 290 Electoral College votes, more than the figure of 270 needed to win the state-by-state fight for the White House.
Shortly after networks called Wisconsin for Trump on Tuesday evening, celebrating supporters at his election night rally in New York began to chant "lock her up" - a common refrain on the campaign trail for the former US secretary of state repeatedly branded "Crooked Hillary" by the volatile Trump.
A packed crowd in the lobby of Trump`s new hotel in Washington, DC, also broke into chants of "lock her up" and "USA, USA, USA" as state after state was called for Trump.
A wealthy real-estate developer and former reality TV host, the 70-year-old Trump rode a wave of anger toward Washington insiders to challenge Hillary, whose gold-plated establishment resume includes stints as a first lady, US senator and secretary of state.
His win raises a host of questions for the United States at home and abroad. He campaigned on a pledge to take the country on a more isolationist, protectionist "America First" path.
In a presidential campaign that focused more on the character of the candidates than on policy, both Hillary and Trump accused each other of being fundamentally unfit to lead the country.
Trump entered the race 17 months ago and defeated a field of some 16 rival Republican candidates in the primary contests to win his party`s presidential nomination.
He survived a series of seemingly crippling blows, many of them self-inflicted, including the emergence in October of a 2005 video in which he boasted about making unwanted sexual advances on women. He apologised but within days, several women emerged to say he had groped them, allegations he denied.
He was judged the loser of all three presidential debates with Hillary and she led him by varying margins for months in opinion polls.
Trump won avid support among a core base of white non-college educated workers with his promise to be the "greatest jobs president that God ever created”. He has vowed to impose a 35 percent tariff on goods exported to the United States by US companies that went abroad.
His unpredictable nature, frequent insults and unorthodox proposals led to campaign feuds with a long list of people, including Muslims, the disabled, Republican US Senator John McCain, Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly, the family of a slain Muslim-American soldier, a Miss Universe winner and a federal judge of Mexican heritage.
At 70, Trump will be the oldest first-term US president. The presidency will be his first elected office, and it remains to be seen how he will work with Congress. During the campaign, Trump was the target of sharp disapproval, not just from Democrats but from many in his own party.
Throughout his campaign - and especially in his acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention in July - Trump described a dark America that had been knocked to its knees by China, Mexico, Russia and Islamic State. The American dream was dead, he said, smothered by malevolent business interests and corrupt politicians, and he alone could revive it.
He offered vague plans to win economic concessions from China, to build a wall on the southern US border with Mexico to keep out undocumented immigrants and to pay for it with tax money sent home by migrants.
Trump`s national security ideas, opposed by most of the elite voices across the political spectrum, have simultaneously included promises to build up the US military while at the same time avoiding foreign military entanglements.
He wants to rewrite international trade deals to reduce trade deficits. He has taken positions that raise the possibility of damaging relations with America`s most trusted allies in Europe, Asia and the Middle East.
He has promised to warm relations with Russia that have chilled under Obama over Russian President Vladimir Putin`s intervention in the Syrian civil war and his seizure of Ukraine`s Crimea region.
His triumph was a rebuke to President Barack Obama, a Democrat who spent weeks flying around the country to campaign against him. Obama will hand over the office to Trump after serving the maximum eight years allowed by law.
Trump promises to push Congress to repeal Obama`s troubled healthcare plan and to reverse his Clean Power Plan. He plans to create jobs by relying on US fossil fuels such as oil and gas.
Trump`s victory marked a frustrating end to the presidential aspirations of Hillary, 69, who for the second time failed in her drive to be elected the first woman US president.
(With Agency inputs)