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World

ORIGINAL FRENCH ARTICLE: Barack Obama: "le changement est arrive"

by Actus Humanite

Barack Obama Says ’Change has Come’

Translated Friday 7 November 2008, by Alison Billington

Barack Obama won a historic victory on Tuesday thanks to the promise of change that he reiterated throughout his campaign.

The Democrat, Barack Obama, aged 47, has won the presidential election against the Republican John McCain. So he becomes the first black president in the history of the United States.

Barack Obama won a historic victory on Tuesday thanks to the promise of change that he reiterated throughout his campaign.

The president announced on Tuesday evening to his united supporters at Chicago that ‘change had come to America’. He called upon them to show their unity to facing up to the challenges which await the country.

Obama is certain of at least 338 votes of electoral college votes with his victories not only in Ohio and Florida but also in Virgina, Iowa, New Mexico, Nevada and Colorado (states that voted for Bush in 2004), when only 270 votes would have assured his election.

The senator of Illinois made sure he went above the threshold of the 270 Congress votes necessary to obtain the majority of the electoral body which was to elect the forty-forth president of the United States. Obama won the popular vote as well.

A crushing victory for the Democrats

Scenes of jubilation greeted Obama’s victory across the country notably in his fief of Chicago where tens of thousands of people took up in chorus the mixed race candidate’s slogan, ‘Yes, we can.’

McCain, aged 72, lost all hope of winning the election when he gave way in key states such as Ohio, a state that permitted George Bush to succeed in 2004 against John Kerry. McCain also lost in Virgina, a State that had not voted in favour of a Democrat since Lyndon Johnson in 1964.

In Phoenix, McCain declared to his assembled supporters that he had telephoned Obama to congratulate him, and he paid tribute to his rival’s historic campaign.

‘We have come to the end of a long journey. I call on all Americans who have supported me to join me in congratulating the future president (Barack Obama) and also to assure him of our good will’, declared McCain.

Obama’s election is accompanied by the landslide victory of the Democrats in Congress, where the party represented by the donkey forces home its victory in the Senate as well as in the House of Representatives.

The arrival in the White House of Barack Obama,
born of a black, Kenyan father and a white mother from Kansas,
is a historic moment in the United States, 45 years after the height of the movement for civil rights led by Martin Luther King.

The tears of Jesse Jackson

Tribute to Obama’s victory was paid throughout the land.

"This is a great night. This is an incredible night," enthused the congressman from Georgia, John Lewis, who was violently beaten by police in the 1960s during a march in favour of civil rights at Selma in Alabama.

Tens of thousands of militant Democrats converged on Grant Park in Chicago where Obama was to address the crowd.

Reverend Jesse Jackson, a key figure in the civil rights movement, had joined the crowd. Tears streamed down his cheeks.

Succession to George Bush nevertheless looks difficult for Obama who is called on to revive the country’s economy, manage the wars in Irak and Afghanistan, organise finances with a public deficit of nearly 500 billion dollars, and restore the image of the country abroad.

Barack Obama, aged 47, will be invested as the forty-forth president of the United States on 20th January 2009.


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