Eyes on Ohio, Obama re-elected for four more years
Published: Wednesday, November 7, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, November 7, 2012 03:11
President Barack Obama has been re-elected for a second term.
After multiple sources announced that Obama had won Ohio’s 18 electoral votes, reports started coming in that he had won the presidency.
The announcement was greeted with cheers of “Four more years,” and “O-H-I-O” from students gathered at the Ohio Union to watch the election results.
Obama also won swing states such as Wisconsin, Iowa, New Hampshire and Virginia.
Just after 11:15 p.m., the call was made that Obama had won.
With 99 percent of the state’s precincts reporting at about 2:45 a.m. Wednesday, Obama won Ohio with 50 percent of the vote, leading Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney who captured 48 percent.
In his victory speech at about 1:30 a.m. Obama thanked his family, his campaign and voters — whether they supported him or not — for making their voices heard and allowing America to move forward.
“Thank you for believing all the way,” he said. “Through every hill, every valley.”
He said there may be disagreements going forward, but that’s what makes America’s democracy great.
“America is not about what can be done for us, it’s about what can be done by us,” he said. “That’s the principle our country was founded on.”
He also thanked Romney for putting up the fight that he did.
“We may have battled fiercely, but it’s only because we love this country deeply,” Obama said.
Romney publicly congratulated Obama on his re-election at about 1 a.m.
“This is a time of great challenges for America and I pray that the president will be successful in guiding our nation,” Romney said. “I ran for president because I’m concerned about America. The election is over but our values endure.”
Steven Huefner, a professor at Ohio State’s Moritz College of Law, said he wasn’t surprised Obama won, but the call came much earlier than he expected.
“It’s an advantage to our national government to be moving forward now as opposed to waiting,” he said. “I’m sure that this is a relief to the American public that it’s over.”
Adnane Rhazzal, a third-year in economics and a worker for the Obama campaign, waited for election results at the Ohio Democratic election night watch party at the Hilton Hotel downtown and said the nation was watching Ohio.
“(It’s) unbelievable,” Rhazzal said after Obama’s re-election was announced. “We made it happen for the president.”
But Adam Brigham, a first-year in vocal performance, was at the Ohio Republican election night watch party at the Renaissance Hotel downtown and said he’s not optimistic about the next four years.
“I’m devastated,” Brigham said after it was announced that Romney was projected to lose. “I don’t think I’ve ever been more disappointed in America.”
Niraj Antani, communications director for the OSU College Republicans, said Obama made his campaign about the small issues and there isn’t a more admirable man out there than Romney.
“In four years you’re … still gonna see college students struggling,” Antani said.
Paul Filippelli, executive director of the OSU College Democrats, said he was glad America affirmed everything Obama has done for the past four years.
“I’m glad that we’re gonna continue with the track we’ve been on,” he said. “I’m really glad that it happened the way that it did.”
But it was a nail-biter.
Ohio was teetering, and the candidates knew it. Obama and Romney spent Monday, their last day of campaigning, in Columbus.
Obama spoke at Nationwide Arena Monday afternoon to a crowd of about 15,500 after Bruce Springsteen and rapper Jay-Z, whose real name is Shawn Carter, performed.
But just as Obama, Jay-Z and Springsteen left the stage at Nationwide Arena, Romney was flying into his “victory rally” at Landmark Aviation near the Port Columbus International Airport.
He brought the Marshall Tucker Band with him to perform.
Monday’s visits were the grand finale to an election season peppered with political visits to campus and Columbus.
Obama visited OSU’s campus five times in the past two years. While Romney never stopped by campus, his running mate Paul Ryan attended the OSU football game against his alma mater, Miami (Ohio).
Obama said in his victory speech that he’s never been more hopeful about the future.
“We know in our hearts that for the United States of America, the best is yet to come,” he said.
Kayla Byler, Becca Marrie, Pat Brennan, Hannah Brokenshire and Brandon Klein contributed to this story.