No matter how they cast their ballots, all Americans can be proud of the history that was made yesterday. Across the country, citizens voted in large numbers. They showed a watching world the vitality of America’s democracy, and the strides we have made toward a more perfect union. They chose a President whose journey represents a triumph of the American story — a testament to hard work, optimism, and faith in the enduring promise of our nation.
Many of our citizens thought they would never live to see that day. This moment is especially uplifting for a generation of Americans who witnessed the struggle for civil rights with their own eyes — and four decades later see a dream fulfilled.
A long campaign has now ended, and we move forward as one nation. We’re embarking on a period of change in Washington, yet there are some things that will not change. The United States government will stay vigilant in meeting its most important responsibility — protecting the American people. And the world can be certain this commitment will remain steadfast under our next Commander-in-Chief.
I do, however, take issue with his statement that protecting the American people is the government’s most important responsibility. I believe the most important responsibility for any member of government individually, and for government as a whole should be to protect, defend and uphold the U.S. Constitution. That is what our elected officials have taken an oath to do. If they keep their oath in defending the Constitution, government officials will also be protecting the American people, but it may be possible, in some sense, to do the latter without doing the former. Call me nit-picky, but I think it’s a distinction worth making.
Congrats, president-elect Obama. I wish you every success in keeping the sacred oath you will soon take.