So, the US election band-waggon has finally rolled to a halt - for the time being - and Barak Obama has once again emerged victorious with a mandate to govern the most powerful nation on Earth for another four-year term. And I, for one, am delighted with the result. My natural preference is for a more compassionate, less capitalist-driven political agenda (admittedly difficult to pull off in the USA), and Obama fits with my leanings much better than Romney. If I was an American, I would naturally be drawn towards the Democratic Party.
Although not directly affected by the outcome of the poll, I acknowledge that the incumbent of the White House has a certain influence outside of the 50 states, and who they are matters to me: as a Brit, as a European, and as a citizen of the world. Their decisions, their influence, will in some way impact my life.
The euphoria of four years ago, when Obama was swept into the Presidency on a wave of Hope and optimism, was somewhat lacking this time, though. As I watched the news programs this morning a number of things struck me. One was the gracious way in which Mitt Romney conceded defeat, with no public show of bitterness, and with a pledge to pray for the President for the task that is now ahead of him. Another was the way in which Obama accepted victory, which was, to me, much more understated and down-played than it was in 2008. I particularly admired his offer to sit down with Romney to look at how the country could be taken forward from this point, and his focus on the American people rather than himself as the American President.
With Mitt Romney and I hope many other people of faith across the USA and across the world, I will continue to pray for President Obama, as I hope I would have done for Romney, had he won.