When it was announced that Barack Obama would become the 44th president of the United States, Americans could not wait to hear each candidate’s reaction.
Barack Obama’s victory speech promised change, while John McCain’s concession speech hoped to bring America back together after such a close race. According to CNN, an estimated 124 million people voted in the 2008 election, with Obama taking 53 percent of the popular vote and McCain taking 46 percent.
The speeches given by McCain and Obama were both touching and sincere, aiming at uniting Americans. The beginning of Obama’s speech centered on the diversity of voters who waited hours to caste their vote, bringing tears to some audience members.
“It’s the answer spoken by young and old, rich and poor, Democrat and Republican, black, white, Hispanic, Asian, Native American, gay, straight, disabled and not disabled,” Obama said. “Americans who sent a message to the world that we have never been just a collection of individuals or a collection of red states and blue states: we are, and always will be, the United States of America.”
Last Tuesday will be a day well remembered in history, as it brought the nation’s first African American president. Obama’s speech offered inspiration to Americans and solidified what this entire election has been about all along; change.
“It’s been a long time coming, but tonight, because of what we did on this date in this election at this defining moment change has come to America,” Obama said.
Although the bullet proof glass featured in front of Obama had some viewers on edge, no one could doubt the energy present in the audience. Obama stated that this victory is America’s and that this is the moment for the United States to change. The audience praised Obama and chanted “yes we can!” throughout his speech.
While cheers were heard when Obama spoke about McCain, the same could not be said for the latter. Although McCain’s speech was touching and aspired to get the country back together, certain members of the audience could not accept the defeat and booed whenever McCain spoke of Obama. McCain hopes that the change that Obama has promised will occur and advises his supporters to come together to ensure a positive future.
“I urge all Americans who supported me to join me in not just congratulating him, but offering our next president our good will and earnest effort to find ways to come together to find the necessary compromises to bridge our differences and help restore our prosperity, defend our security in a dangerous world, and leave our children and grandchildren a stronger, better country than we inherited,” McCain said.
McCain also thanked Sarah Palin, who had tears in her eyes, and called her an “impressive new voice” in the Republican Party. At one point, McCain’s audience shouted “we want John,” but McCain advised them that these are difficult times for our country. He also said that he will help Obama lead the United States through the challenges that it faces.
“America today is a world away from the cruel and frightful bigotry of that time,” McCain said. “There is no better evidence of this than the election of an African-American to the presidency of the United States.”