Election Reflections

Four more years! (property of Shepard Fairey/OBEY)

Last night, a year’s worth of campaigning finally came to an end as President Barack Obama defeated Republican challenger Mitt Romney in what many consider a landslide victory. Not only did Obama collect more electoral votes—the only real determinants of America’s next leader—but he also pulled ahead in the popular vote. In other words, the people have spoken and it is now official: Barack Obama will remain our President for the next four years.

And honestly, I couldn’t be happier.

Bear in mind that I don’t believe Romney is as evil or self-serving as people seem to think. Paul Ryan seems a little sketchy, but that’s only because I don’t know much about him. Nevertheless, I was fully prepared to deal with them both for the next four to eight years. I wasn’t looking forward to it, but I could handle it if it happened. I’m pretty adaptable. Fortunately, this won’t be necessary. And aside from some random news coverage the next few months, I doubt if I’ll ever hear about Mitt Romney again. Ryan may appear in 2016 as a candidate or running mate, but Mitt will likely fade into obscurity, at least in terms of national exposure.

Farewell, Mitt. Thanks for the memories.

Of course, I thought Romney would get one last jab in when he delayed his concession speech last night. Then word spread that his advisors would likely contest the results from Ohio, the state that basically put Obama over the top. Here we go again, I told myself. Fortunately, the President soon won several more states and Ohio no longer mattered. Yet Romney still hadn’t delivered his speech.

What the hell?

At first, I thought what some of you likely thought, especially my Democrat friends out there: Here he goes being an ass again. It seemed like Mitt was stalling and since it was so late, I caught myself yawning or dozing off every couple of minutes. And this went on for a while.

Then I thought about a news story I read earlier where Romney claimed to have only an acceptance speech. At the time, his confidence came off as arrogance, but I now see that he was just staying positive. Sadly, things didn’t work out and Mitt found himself sitting in that hotel room—surrounded by family, friends and staff members—but lacking a concession speech. And the clock was ticking.

Mitt before he rides off into the sunset (courtesy of Reuters/Jim Young)

I know Romney probably didn’t write the speech himself, but I was happy when he finally took the stage. And even though I had grown weary of hearing him speak—through no fault of his own and due primarily to overexposure in the media—I thought Mitt delivered a gracious, heartfelt and classy concession speech. He was visibly weary and undoubtedly crushed by the defeat, but he did the right thing, threw his support behind the President and exited the political world stage with dignity. I have newfound respect for him and sincerely wish him well in the next phase of his life.

To President Obama—my candidate of choice—I offer my deepest congratulations and look forward to the things he will accomplish these next four years. People give him a hard time, but this man walked into an economic disaster and got bombarded with unreasonable expectations right out of the gate. And whether you can admit it or not, Obama has made some positive strides: the unemployment rate is down; Osama Bin Laden is toast; the automobile industry is alive and kicking; people once denied health care are getting the help they need; and students can get money for college, to name a few.

I’m sure some Republicans in the crowd have something to say about this, but please refrain from posting mean or offensive comments. Lord knows, there’s enough of that happening on Facebook to last a lifetime. Political status updates have sparked heated arguments and friends are being de-friended left and right.

It’s all pretty ridiculous.

What we should be doing is precisely what President Obama, Democrats and Republicans should be doing soon: working together. Our beloved nation is divided. It doesn’t take a genius to figure that out. But are we sure this is such a bad thing? If you ask me, it’s better to view it as an opportunity. We now have a chance to put our heads together and to solve our collective problems fairly and intelligently. No one group will make the decisions and a consensus will need to be reached if we ever hope to progress and evolve as a nation. Together, we can make America great. Divided, we may never get our heads above water again. A number of clichés come to mind that could be included here, but I’m pretty sure I hit my quota already.

So here I am sitting in an Obama-Biden country again and wondering what the future will bring. It was a long and difficult campaign, but now it’s done and things can finally return to normal. And for once, I can enjoy some television without being subjected to political ads, super pacts and “I endorse this message” every 15 seconds.

Life is good.

Posted on November 8, 2012, in Life, Perspectives and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Congratulations.I stayed up watching it all until 3:30 wed. morning.Was really happy,also about vote for marihuana in Washington.Looks like we might actually start going forward at last.I’m sure if U.S. decides to legalize Canada will follow.Lots to celebrate today.

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