Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Surge of Joy as Obama Storms to White House; My Girls: Barack Obama with Daughters Sasha and Malia at the Chicago Victory Rally. He Promised Them a New Puppy to Take to the White House When He Becomes President on 20 January

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Surge of Joy as Obama Storms to White House; My Girls: Barack Obama with Daughters Sasha and Malia at the Chicago Victory Rally. He Promised Them a New Puppy to Take to the White House When He Becomes President on 20 January

Article excerpt

BARACK OBAMA changed the face of America in a landslide election victory today. The 44th President of the United States will be the first black man to hold the highest office. Change has come to America, he announced to an ocean of cheering, weeping and hugging supporters in Chicagos Grant Park.

He added: This is our time . . . to reclaim the American dream. In a nation deeply scarred still by its history of slavery, segregation and the long struggle for civil rights, his achievement brought a surge of joy and excitement that spanned racial and party political divides.

But the Obama era promises to change the whole world, not just America. The president-elect pledges to pull troops from Iraq, redouble the war against Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan, curb free trade to protect American jobs and stronger action on global warming.

The child of a mixed marriage, whose Kenyan father herded goats as a boy and whose white mother hailed from Kansas, he once called himself a skinny kid with a funny name. In fact, his name means blessed. Now the full pomp and power of the worlds most powerful nation will fall on his shoulders when he is sworn in on 20 January.

In his first speech as president-elect, he acknowledged the significance of the result to black people, saying: If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible; who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time; who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer. Looking on was black rights campaigner, the Rev Jesse Jackson, who tried and failed to run for the presidency himself. It is only 43 years since America banned the disenfranchisement of blacks in many southern states.

Evoking the spirit of Abraham Lincoln, Mr Obama, 47, said: To those Americans whose support I have yet to earn, I may not have won your vote tonight, but I hear your voices. I need your help. And I will be your President, too. He hinted that he will invite Republicans to serve in his administration. President Bushs current defence secretary Robert Gates may be asked to stay on, it was said. …

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