President Barack Obama was re-elected on Tuesday with a commanding victory in the Electoral College that included wins in all but two swing states.
With wins in Ohio, Wisconsin, Iowa and Nevada, Obama’s re-election was far less of a dead heat than the polls made it out to be. This election indicates that the results of 2008 were not just a single occurrence of minority voter turnout but were, perhaps, a true indicator of a country turning the corner towards a new era of political involvement.
White voters make up 72 percent of the electorate. Obama lost the vote among white males by a large margin, with Romney taking 52 percent of the vote and Obama just 45 percent. Obama also lost the vote among white women by a substantial margin.
Bloomberg Businessweek reported that Obama received 55 percent of the overall women’s vote. CNN exit polls also have Obama carrying 93 percent of the African-American vote and 71 percent of the Latino vote. Obama also did very well with young voters, garnering 60 percent of the vote among 18- to 29-year-olds.
Obama was re-elected by African-Americans, women, Latinos and young adults. The minorities of this country are not minorities when grouped together. They are the majority. Their voting strength was exhibited again in 2012.
The popular election was very close, but the path for Romney to a victory in the Electoral College was impossible to navigate. Romney changed his position on abortion to obtain the Republican nomination for president, this, along with more than one gaff by Republican candidates in state elections concerning women’s reproductive rights, may have had an effect on his loss in 2012.
Since Franklin Roosevelt, no president has ever been re-elected with an unemployment rate of 7.9 percent. With a bleak economy and an uncertain future, it is perhaps hard for citizens across the country to find hope going forward. These are uncertain and difficult times, but within this election, and the election of 2008, there is a message.
The United States was established with a structure of checks and balances and constitutional protection of certain rights for its citizens. The right to vote was exercised on Tuesday, and the results are in. America has changed.
Perhaps when Obama offered change four years ago, he didn’t mean healthcare, gun control or economic stimulus. Perhaps he has little to do with the changes in America. Perhaps the people changed the country themselves by turning out in large numbers and exhibiting the power of their equal rights as citizens of this country.
Who needs a revolution when you have the United States Constitution?