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November 07, 2012 - Image 7

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The Michigan Daily, 2012-11-07

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Wednesday, November 7, 2012 - 7A

From Page 1A
yet to come," Obama said.
Obama's re-election - com-
ing after a campaign season in
which the two candidates paved
distinct choices for the country's
future - seemed to signify that
despite waning support, the elec-
torate still believes in the vision of
change the president first laid out
four years ago.
However, his victory was not
as decisive as the historic 2008
presidential election. In the final
month following the Oct. 3 presi-
dential debate, Obama faced a
nationwide surge by Romney
and tightening poll numbers that
threatened his hold on crucial
swing states and his prospects for
a coveted second term.
As of 4 a.m., Obama holds 303
Electoral College votes to Rom-
ney's 206 according to the Associ-
ated Press, a margin significantly
lower than his 385-173 victory
over Senator John McCain (R-
Ariz.) in 2008. However, the
From Page 1A
and Obama's re-election became
more assured, impromptu cel-
ebrations and fits of dejection
became more common as liberals
rejoiced and conservatives faced
the imminent reality of another
four years of the Democratic
president. ,
Excitement reached a fever
pitch after 11 p.m., after most
major television networks called
S the election in favor of Obama.
Spontaneously, hundreds of stu-
dents began to gather on the Diag
to celebrate the election, reminis-
cent of a similar outpouring after
the 2008 election.
LSA freshman Sam Whaley,
an Obama supporter, said he
quickly made his way to the Diag
after hearing reports on CNN
that Obama would be re-elected.
He used the words "happy" and
"relieved" to describe the atmo-
sphere in the Diag, where the
crowd was rapidly growing.
"Everybody just wanted to be
together and be excited," Whal-
ey said. "So we all rushed to the
Diag because it's like the heart of
Central Campus. It has been a lot
of cheering and excitement and
some fight songs - "Hail to the
Victors," patriotic songs, a little
bit of everything. Just a lot of hap-
Another reveler, LSA freshman
Conner Wood, rushed to the Diag
to join his peers in what he called
a "magnificentvictory."
"It's very community," Wood
said. "People are very excited
about it, to the point where they're
doing handstands and dancing.
I've hugged many strangers. It's
just been a great, great euphoric
moment. I mean, we came so close
to disaster."
Regan Moro, a freshman in
the School of Music, Theatre and
Dance, said she was elated by the
election results, noting she is a
supporter of Obama's policies on

popular vote remains close, with
Obama holding a slim lead of just
50 percent to 48 percent.
Despite the challenges, Obama
clinched the electoral votes of
swing states like Ohio and Vir-
ginia, both of which projected
narrow margins throughout the
evening after the polls closed. He
also won early victories in Penn-
sylvania and Michigan, two states
that Romney singled out as late
annexations to his electoral map,
before Wisconsin, Nevada and
Iowa also went blue.
In his concession speech from
Boston early Wednesday morn-
ing, Romney told the crowd to put
aside partisanship, as he stood
before a banner bearing the words
"A Believe in America"
"The nation, as you know, is at
a critical point," Romney said. "At
a time like this, we cai't risk par-
tisan bickering and political pos-
turing. Our leaders have to reach
across the aisle to do the people's
Romney's defeat represented a
sharp loss for Republicans, who
touted the election as an opportu-
social issues and came to the Diag
to celebrate with other students
who share similar views.
"I didn't think that Romney
would win, but I was a little bit
nervous about it because I know
the last four years haven't been
the easiest," Moro said. "I think
we're all brought to the Diagfor a
sense of community. I really feel
a part of the University of Michi-
gan community."
At a small gathering of about
a dozen members of the Univer-
sity's chapter of College Demo-
crats early in the evening, LSA
senior Lauren Coffman, the
communications director of the
group, said she believes Obama
resonates for many young people
around the nation.
"I think that (Obama) really
embodies the American dream,"
LSA junior Lauren Coffman,
communications director for
the College Democrats, said. "I
mean, he came from a single par-
ent household, from a family that
didn't necessarily have a lot of
money, and he has inspired the
country through his speeches
and through his story."
Speaking at the Michigan
Democratic Party's election
center in Detroit, LSA junior
Alexandra Brill, chair of the Uni-
versity's College Democrats, said
she was proud of the work that
the group had done leading up to
Election Day.
"We worked really hard both
with the top of the ticket and
with local candidates that were
victorious," Brill said in an inter-
At a muted affair early in the
evening, about 30 members of
the University's College Repub-
licans gathered at the Michigan
Union to watch election analysis
and early returns from the first-
reporting states. Though many
members remained optimistic
for a Mitt Romney victory, some
quietly conceding the race was a
long shot for the former Massa-
chusetts governor.

nity to reverse the direction of the
country over the last four years
and to restore American values.
"I ran for office because I'm
concerned about America,"
Romney said. "This election is
over, but our principles endure. I
believe that the principles upon
which this nation was founded
are the only sure guide to a resur-
gent economy and to renewed
The defeat for Romney was
especially bitter for some in Mich-
igan, as the candidate is a native
of Bloomfield Hills and the son of
former governor George Romney,
who served from 1963 to 1969.
Early returns in the state, after
Oakland County became the first
county to report its results, were
promising for Romny. But strong
turnout among younger voters
and minority voters and Obama's
support for the auto bailout gave
him an edge in the state, where
he ultimately won by 5 percent
according to the Associated Press.
The call marked the sixth con-
secutive presidential election
in which Michigan went Demo-
Speaking only when the first
returns began coming in, LSA
junior Kaitlin Mikatarian, the
secretaryofCollege Republicans,
said though she wasn't optimis-
tic about Romney's chances, she
hadn't given up hope.
By 8 p.m., the group had dis-
banded and members had gone to
watch the election results indi-
vidually or in smaller groups.
After networks called the
election for Obama, LSA junior
Jared Boot, the chair of the
University's Students for Rom-
ney, said though his party lost
the presidency, they were con-
soled by electoral success in the
Supreme Court races and the
ballot proposals.
Proposal 1- the only proposal
supported by Republican Rick
Snyder, which would continue
to allow the state government
the right to establish emergency
financial managers in strug-
gling cities - passed by a narrow
margin. Proposals 2 through 6,
opposed by Snyder, all failed to
garner enough support. .
"We put up a good fight," Boot
said. "We've made a presence on
campus, people know we exist,
and hopefully people respect our
positions better."
Boot added that the unclear
outcome of the popular vote -
which shows Obama leading by
less than 500,000 votes as of 4
a.m. according to the Associ-
ated Press - is a mandate for
the president to work more col-
laboratively with Republicans in
"We're looking for the bright
spots," Boot said. "The governor
was very proud of that - he's
worked tirelessly on those six
proposals and he's very pleased
with the results that are com-
ing in. He'll keep moving Michi-
gan's economy forward, thanks
to people realizing that special
interests can't have a hold on our
Political Science Prof. Michael
Heaney said that while the elec-

cratic, dating back to former
President Bill Clinton's victory in
the state in the 1992 presidential
In Wood County, a critical
district in Ohio, the election was
particularly close, with Obama
winning by less than 3,000 votes
out of about 60,000 ballots cast.
Though the chairs of the coun-
ty Democratic Party and Republi-
can Party said before the election
they anticipated that the county
would likely be closely contest-
ed, students at Bowling Green
State University in Wood County
seemed to favor Obama.
BGSU undergraduate student
and Romney supporter Paige
Pitts, said she found the liberal
bias of her peers frustrating.
"It was really upsetting," Pitts
said. "I feel like my age group is
such a moldable time, and the
fact that it was so biased made me
really upset."
Just as he did four years ago,
Obama swept to victory with
the help of high turnout among
youth, African American and
Latino voters.
tion was suspenseful, student
participation was somewhat
below average. However, he
noted it was difficult to over-
come the spirit and exhilaration
of the 2008 campaign.
"2008 was just an exception-
ally exciting election," Heaney
said. "There are two things
you've got to keep in mind:
how dark and terrible the Bush
(years) were, and bringing the
first African-American president
and this younger man who was
such a charismatic speaker. 2008
was the most exciting election of
my lifetime."
By 9 p.m., nearly 200 students
and alumni filled the Union's
University Club room as results
began rolling across televi-
sion screens. Gathering around
crowded tables adorned with
colorful balloons, posters and
streamers, students nibbled on
ice cream bars while keeping
their eyes locked on the results.
The event, sponsored by the
Center for Campus Involvement,
drew students from across the
political spectrum. At one table,
a group of Obama supporters
donned buttons and cheered
with each state that turned blue
on the electoral map, while oth-
ers donned Michigan Republican
Party T-shirts.
Overall, cheers for Obama vic-
tories dominated the night, espe-
cially when networks announced
an Obama win in Michigan.
"I felt elated when Obama
captured the state of Michi-
gan," Kinesiology senior Miatta
McCrummady said. "I voted for
him the first time and I voted for
him again today."
McCrummady said she stood
with Obama primarily due to his
support for women's rights and
the middle class.
Before the election was called
later in the evening, Romney
supporters remained optimistic
and hopeful about the Republi-
can nominee's victory.
"This is huge, him being re-

Rather than directing efforts
and funding toward television
advertisements as the Romney
campaign did, Obama focused
on get-out-the-vote efforts to
secure the presidency, accord-
ing to Aaron Kall, director of the
University of Michigan debate
"The turnout was probably
the most important factor," Kall
said. "The (Obama campaign's)
get-out-the-vote effort was
excellent, starting with the early
Obama will now return to
the White House with the task
of implementing the Afford-
able Care Act, continuing the
economic recovery and ending
the war in Afghanistan amid a
host of other initiatives that will
require bipartisan support, espe-
cially since Republicans main-
tained control of the U.S. House
of Representatives, despite Dem-
ocratic gains in the U.S. Senate.
After celebrating at the elec-
tion night rally here; attendees
said they expect the president to
continue rebuilding the country
elected," LSA sophomore Kiana
Alexander said. "As a black per-
son, he represents the dream.
America really is the land of
opportunity. You really can be
Further down State Street,
North Quad Residence Hall host-
ed a watch party event of about
30 students, where discussion
focused primarily on the foreign
policy stances of the two candi-
dates - seemingly fitting for a
theme community focused on
international studies.
LSA junior Nora Dagher said
she talked to many international
students who, though ineligible
to vote, said they feel impacted
by the election.
"The whole world is watch-
ing at this point," Dagher said.
"Whoever wins will affect the
rest of the world as well."
LSA junior Nick Hill, who
concentrates in Middle Eastern
studies and political science,
said he has kept a special focus
on international affairs while
following the election.
"I think the rhetoric that
Obama shows is better towards
the Middle East," he said. "They
look positively toward Obama
and they don't really like the
rhetoric Romney shows."
"The U.S. is a major player in
-world politics," Rackham stu-
dent Ricky Punzalan said. "I feel
like if the wrong person gets the
job, it will dictate the future of
not only the U.S., but the world
stage as well."
When NBC first announced
that Obama won re-election,
cheers erupted across the room.
Students jumped out of their
seats, rushing to embrace their
fellow supporters with hugs of
relief and excitement, or reach-
ing for their phones to compare
reactions with friends and rela-
Across the street, it was dif-
ficult to shuffle through the
crowd at the State Street Buffalo
Wild Wings, where students in

moving forward.
"(In 2008), we had no direc-
tion - we were headed down
to the pits of hell, let's say that,"
Washington, D.C. resident Clint
McPherson said. "I'm more
excited now because we're going
somewhere. We're going some-
When Montgomery, the Chi-
cago resident who danced in the
aisle, paused to reflect on what
the election meant for the coun-
try, he said Obama's re-election
will change the course of the
country's history.
"This is a referendum on two
views of what the country should
be, and it's very clear, not by just
by the fact that the president won,
that the American people want to
move this country forward in the
way that Obama describes," he
said. "I think that's the bottom
- Daily Staff Reporter
Alicia Adamczyk contributed
reporting from Bowling Green
,Ohio. The Associated Press
also contributed reporting.
the Ford School of Public Policy
gathered together to watch the
results amid the aroma of teri-
yaki chicken wings.
At a table in the back of the
restaurant, Public Policy senior
Matthew Mejia gathered with
fellow policy students to await
the results. Waitresses bustled in
and out to replace plates of wings
between cheers for Obama victo-
For Mejia, the electric atmo-
sphere harkened back to the
campus excitement of 2008.
"It's a really exciting night
and it's a really important night,"
Mejia said. "You hear the cheers,
you hear the boos. If nothing
else, you can tell that people care
and I think that I think is a really
important thing. That is encour-
Nearby, Public Policy gradu-
ate student Matt Papadopoulos
sported a Romney/Ryan sticker
as he took in the results.
"Today is an expression of
American democracy1" Papado-
poulos said. "Regardless of what
happens, the American people
had a chance to voice their opin-
ion and I think that's an impor-
tant right that we all have and it's
exciting to be able to use that and
be apart of that process."
Papadopoulos said he is
curious to see how the Obama
administration tackles national
issues over the next few years.
"Washington, D.C. has kind
of been at a stalemate for the
few years," Papadopoulos said.
"Ultimately, we elect our offi-
cials regardless of party or where
they come from - we elect our
officials to do things, not to stop
doing things. And really, that's
something that I would like to see
continue happening, regardless
of specifically what ideology that
might service to."
- Daily Staff Reporters Tui
Rademaker, Danielle Stoppelmann,
Stephanie Dilworth and Carly
Fromm contributed reporting.

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