Silicon Valley Is Panicking About a Donald Trump Presidency

November 9, 2016, 5:41 AM UTC
GOP Nominee Donald Trump Casts His Vote In The 2016 Presidential Election
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 8: Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump departs after voting at the Beckman Hill International School in New York City. After a contentious campaign season, Americans go to the polls today to choose the next president of the United States. (Photo by Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images)
Aaron P. Bernstein—Getty Images

As the 2016 presidential election nears its close, Republican candidate Donald Trump’s claim on the White House is looking likelier and likelier.

With the notable exception of Peter Thiel, the contrarian billionaire investor and cofounder of PayPal (PYPL), Silicon Valley luminaries have mostly rallied behind Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, whose odds look gloomier by the minute.

A number of leaders in the tech industry took to Twitter to lament the occasion on Tuesday night.

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“i’d like to wake up now please,” commented Sam Altman, who heads the startup accelerator Y Combinator and who has endorsed Clinton. “i’ve never felt as alone in a room full of people as i do right now.”

“Losing this election doesn’t mean giving up,” said Paul Graham, founder of Y Combinator and a business partner of Altman.

Chris Sacca, a prominent venture capitalist and Twitter (TWTR) investor, cited a quote often attributed to former U.S. president Abraham Lincoln. “America will never be destroyed from the outside,” Sacca wrote. “If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves. -Lincoln”

Kimberly Bryant, founder of the non-profit organization Black Girls Code, posted a GIF of actor Nicholas Cage looking disraught. “Y’all I just don’t even know right now,” she said. “I need a cocktail.

Nathan Jurgenson, a social media theorist at the messaging firm Snap (née Snapchat), speculated about how the current regime in the White House might be reacting to the news.

“how many american nuclear weapons can we disarm in a couple months,” Jurgenson wrote. “cant help but imaging the damage the supreme court is going to do over the next decade,” he added.

“Is this what it felt like when people first realized hitler could actually take power?” asked Mark Pincus, the chairman and founder of gaming company Zynga.

Dennis Crowley, founder of the social app FourSquare, pointed to a comment made on Comedy Central’s satirical news program The Daily Show. “This is not the country I hoped it was – it is more divided, more sexist, more racist than I thought it was”

He added: “This sums up exactly how I feel right now. And my emotions are amplified by having a 6mo old daughter. And even tho it’s not over, I’m sad.”

Reshma Saujani, founder of CEO of non-profit organization Girls Who Code, offered some words of encouragement for the Clinton camp. “This is not over yet!!!! Don’t give up. We can do this! It was always going to be tight!

Shervin Pishevar, cofounder of the venture capital firm Sherpa Capital and of the startup Hyperloop One, said that he would agitate for his state seceding from the union. “1/ If Trump wins I am announcing and funding a legitimate campaign for California to become its own nation,” he said.

“Peter Thiel turned out not to be contrarian at all,” he added.

“We are drinking the expensive stuff,” said Stewart Butterfield, CEO of the messaging app Slack and cofounder of the photo-sharing site Flickr.

Arlan Hamilton, an investor at the firm Backstage Capital, wrote that”The American Dream has now become the American Nightmare.”

Update 11/9/16: This post has been updated to include more comments sourced from Twitter.

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