The narrative of the 2016 election seemed to set the tone for the entire year. Donald Trump’s surprising win came at the end of a long, bitter campaign where both sides flung accusations of sexism, racism, lies, cover-ups, illegal activity, and even sexual assault.

The country saw for the first time a political candidate who could change the entire conversation with a tap of his thumb and a tweet. And we saw our first female nominee of a major political party, Hillary Clinton.

But it was the “October surprises” that ultimately came to dominate the story of the 2016 election. Trump’s came in the form of a leaked “Access Hollywood” tape, more than a decade old, in which he described groping women in offensive detail. Clinton’s was a letter from FBI director James Comey to Congress updating the status of an investigation into her email server that didn’t result in charges but never quite disappeared. Both story lines exemplify the dark clouds that hovered over each candidate throughout the race.

Now, Americans are buckling up for the political roller-coaster ride that’s likely to last for the next four years.

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