Obama Adds Florida, Turns Focus To Fiscal Cliff
THE MIAMI HERALD, WASHINGTON POST, REUTERS (U.S.)
WASHINGTON - Fresh from his election victory and emotional Thank You's (see below), Barack Obama will turn back to the gritty business of trying to turn the U.S. economy around.
The first order of business will be a Friday appearance to address the so-called "fiscal cliff," a set of looming deadlines, which if not resolved could send the economy spiralling back into recession. The Washington Post reports that Obama will try to set the tone for upcoming negotiations with Congressional Republicans.
The President will come in with a bit more fire power, as it looks clear now that he also won the state of Florida in Tuesday's ballotting. The head of Florida's Democrat Party has issued a statement congratulating Obama, in what now seems likely to be a victory in the only state yet to declare an official result.
As of Thursday evening, Obama leads the Republican candidate by a margin of just 58,055 votes in the Sunshine State, or 49.92% to 49.22%. However, the votes yet to be counted are in heavily Democrat areas.
Mitt Romney's aides in Florida have also basically conceded defeat: “The numbers in Florida show this was winnable,” Brett Doster, Florida advisor for Romney, said in a statement to the Miami Herald.
“We thought based on our polling and range of organization that we had done what we needed to win. Obviously, we didn’t, and for that I and every other operative in Florida has a sick feeling that we left something on the table. I can assure you this won’t happen again," he said.
Of course Florida's 29 electoral college votes would not have changed the victor in the race for the White House, as Obama had already garnered 303 electoral votes to Romney's 206.
Still, Obama will have little
However, the painfully slow outcome in the state has brought back memories of 2000 when Republican candidate George W. Bush won Florida by only 537 votes and later won the White House after a bitter recount dispute with Democrat Al Gore that reached the U.S. Supreme Court.
Election day in Miami - @OFA_FL via Twitter
Obama's campaign team cited Florida's 1.4 million Latino community as the success of the Democrat Party. Obama won a record 61% of Hispanic votes in Florida, compared to 57% in 2008, according to Reuters.
Obama also made surprising gains in the usually Republican voting Cuban-American electorate, winning 48%.
A Florida win means victories for the President in all the key swing states except North Carolina.
Okay, three days and we still don't know who won Florida. I say, next time, they don't get to vote. They've had their chance.
— Christopher Moore (@TheAuthorGuy) November 9, 2012
Obama's campaign team posted a video Thursday night of the President thanking his team at the campaign headquarters in Chicago.
Addressing the largely young team, Obama was visibly emotional after the bitterly fought campaign slog. “What you guys accomplished will go on in annals of history…but the most important thing you need to know is your journey’s just beginning. You’re just starting," he said.
“That’s been my source of hope. It’s been why the last four years when people ask me how do you put up with this or that, the frustrations of Washington, I think of what you guys are doing. That’s the source of my hope, my strength and my inspiration.”