Clinton Concedes: ‘Our Best Days Are Still Ahead of Us’

'This is painful and it will be for a long time.'

hillary clinton concession speech

Photo via /Andrew Harnik

Hillary Clinton feels the same combination of emptiness and incredulity that you do right now.

“I know how disappointed you feel because I feel it, too,” she said in her concession speech at the New Yorker Hotel in New York City early Wednesday afternoon. “And so do tens of millions of Americans who invested their hopes and dreams in this effort. This is painful and it will be for a long time.”

Wiping a tear from her eye after taking the stage, Clinton apologized for not winning the election. She admitted calling president-elect Donald Trump late Tuesday night to congratulate him, offering “to work with him on behalf of our country.” Clinton said she hopes Trump will be a successful president for all Americans.

“We have seen that our nation is more deeply divided than we thought,” she said. “But I still believe in America, and I always will. And if you do, then we must accept this result and then look to the future.”

Donald Trump is going to be our president. We owe him an open mind and the chance to lead. Our constitutional democracy enshrines the peaceful transfer of power.”

Clinton acknowledged she’s lost in two separate efforts to become the first female president. She said she’s spent her adult life fighting for what she believes in, experiencing both successes and setbacks. Addressing the country’s young people, Clinton advised not to be brought down by these setbacks.

“This loss hurts, but please never stop believing that fighting for what’s right is worth it.” she said. “It is. It is worth it.”

She said she was proud to be a champion for young women who put faith in her, even though she failed to shatter “the highest and hardest glass ceiling” of the presidency.

“But someday, someone will, and hopefully sooner than we might think right now,” she said.

“And to all of the little girls who are watching this, never doubt that you are valuable and powerful and deserving of every chance and opportunity in the world to pursue and achieve your own dreams,” Clinton said.

She thanked her running mate, Tim Kaine, the Obamas, her family, and the country.

“Our best days are ahead of us,” she said.

President Obama addressed the country soon after from the White House, asking Americans not to get cynical.

“We are now all rooting for his success in uniting and leading our country,” he said.

Obama invited Trump to meet at the White House on Thursday.