As news organizations across the nation called the results of the historic 2008 General Election on Tuesday night, naming
Barack Obama the 44th president of the United States and the country’s first African-American Commander in Chief, people around the nation erupted in cheers and gathered in crowds comparable to a New Year’s Eve celebration.
Many celebrities reacted immediately to the news, including the queen of talk, Oprah Winfrey. Winfrey tells ET, "It’s one of the greatest moments I could ever imagine. That’s how great it is."
As expected, Obama won California and the New England states, however he also won the hotly contested Ohio and Pennsylvania–states his opponent John McCain hoped to win.
The Western states helped secure Obama’s victory. The announcement that he had received the necessary electoral-college votes was made immediately after the polls closed in California at 11 p.m. ET.
Flanked by his running mate, Governor Sarah Palin, her husband Todd Palin and wife Cindy McCain, John McCain delivered his concession speech shortly after Obama was declared the winner.
"We have come to the end of a long journey. The American people have spoken and they have spoken clearly. This is an historic election and I recognize the special significance it has for African-Americans," McCain said. "I have always believed that America offers opportunities for those who have the will to seize it…Let there be no reason for any American to fail to cherish their citizenship in this, the greatest nation on earth.
President Bush called Obama to offer his his congratulations. In a statement, Senator Hillary Clinton said, "Tonight, we are celebrating an historic victory for the American people. This was a long and hard fought campaign but the result was well worth the wait."