Barack Obama secured a second term as President of the United States after beating out Mitt Romney in the Nov. 6 election.
Romney led in many polls in the weeks preceding the election, and even during the election with a buffer of several million votes. However, Obama easily took the majority of electoral votes.
The news of his re-election came earlier than expected, as Obama jumped ahead in electoral votes with the addition of votes from California, Oregon and Washington.
Given the close race in swing states such as Ohio, Florida, Virginia, Colorado and Nevada, many news organizations anticipated a closer race, and as a result, a longer election night.
However, by 9:30 p.m. Utah time, these same news organizations, including CNN, Fox News and MSNBC, called the election, naming Obama as the president for the next four years.
Romney was the first to give a speech after receiving the news of the election.
In his concession speech, which he gave at his election headquarters in Boston, Romney thanked his volunteers, family and running mate Paul Ryan and claimed that he and his campaign team gave their all and left all of their efforts on “the field.”
“I believe in the people of America,” Romney said. “I ran for office because I am concerned about America. This election is over but our principles endure. I believe that the principles upon which this nation was founded are the only sure guide to a resurgent economy and a new greatness.”
Following Romney’s speech in Boston, Obama gave his speech in Chicago to a euphoric crowd that greeted him with Stevie Wonder’s “Signed, Sealed, Delivered” and chants of “Four more years.”
“Today, more than 200 years after a former colony won the right to determine its own destiny, the task of perfecting our union moves forward,” Obama said. “It moves forward because of you. It moves forward because you reaffirmed the spirit that has triumphed over war, depression, the spirit that has lifted this country from the pits of despair to the great heights of hope.”
“We rise and fall together as one people,” he added, addressing a nation almost equally divided between Romney and himself in the popular vote.
“I want to thank every American who participated in this election,” he continued, thanking his “happy warrior” Joe Biden, his wife, Michelle, and every volunteer who made calls, attended rallies, knocked doors and held signs, whether for Romney or for himself.
Obama concluded by emphasizing an America moving forward together and the role of American citizens who are willing to put forth effort.
“The role of a citizen in a democracy does not end with your vote,” he said.