Richard Schiff: Mood at the Javits Center felt ‘kind of pre-dystopian’

Going into election night, actor Richard Schiff thought he had insider info showing Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonWhite House accuses Biden of pushing ‘conspiracy theories’ with Trump election claim Biden courts younger voters — who have been a weakness Trayvon Martin’s mother Sybrina Fulton qualifies to run for county commissioner in Florida MORE had the White House race in the bag.

Earlier that evening, the former “West Wing” star — who played fictional White House communications director Toby Ziegler on the NBC political drama — had been on a private conference call with a pollster he declines to name who “had early information.”

“This was a very reliable source who had said that it’s looking like Hillary’s going to win by 4 to 6 points,” Schiff, who spent months campaigning for Clinton across the country, recalled.


“This particular person said that [Trump] will be disgraced and will disappear from the public eye,” he said.

The Emmy Award-winning actor and his wife headed to the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York, where they expected to celebrate a Clinton win with their candidate.

“Considering the inside information that I thought I had, I was pretty ready for a victory,” Schiff said.

But when the numbers started coming in, Schiff said he and others “very quickly realized” Clinton was heading for a loss.

“The feeling was kind of disturbing and kind of pre-dystopian and I said, ‘Let’s get out of here,’ ” he said.

Schiff’s hotel was around the corner from the Trump victory party at the New York Hilton.

Unable to sleep, the 62-year-old star of ABC’s “The Good Doctor” headed outside to get some air at 4 a.m., when he eyed a group of Trump supporters singing.

“I heard ‘God Bless America,’ and I looked up and there were about eight or 10 black men carrying ‘Black Men for Trump’ signs. That was the last image in my head for the night. That just was a striking image,” he said.

“It was a very tough night that didn’t make mathematical sense to me and still doesn’t,” Schiff said. 

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