Over and over, Barack Obama told voters if they stuck with him “we will change this country and change the world.” They did, and now their expectations for him to deliver are firmly planted on his shoulders. Many supporters greeted his victory with euphoria.
Barack Obama speaks at a campaign rally at Bicentennial Park in Miami, Florida, October 21, 2008.(Jim Young/Reuters)
Impatient for a new American era and overcome by a black man’s historic ascension to the White House, they took his achievement for their own — weeping, dancing in the streets, blaring happy horns into Wednesday morning.
But campaign rhetoric soon collides with the gritty duties of governing, and hard realities stand in Obama’s way.
The youthful president-elect appears to know this. His victory speech emphasized humility far more than his fabled confidence, with remarks heavily leavened by references to the difficulties before the nation.
He declared “change has come to America” and closed with his “yes we can” campaign slogan, but not before speaking of the certainty of setbacks. “The road ahead will be long,” Obama warned. “We may not get there in one year or even one term.”
From the Associated Press
By JENNIFER LOVEN, AP White House Correspondent