At some point in the transition from last night to this morning, there was a collective sigh of relief.
I know so many people who were afraid of what might happen in this election, and although I know there was a lot on the line, I never felt afraid and unsure like I did in the last election. I had confidence that Obama would be re-elected. As soon as he stood up to the podium to speak, I found myself emotional and moved by his ability to inspire.
What feels different to me is the overall state of where America is and where America is going. What I mean is that I feel as though we have crossed a threshold; we have taken a step to cross over this invisible line about what the future of our country looks like.
The 113th Congress will have at least 19 female Senators, the most ever in US history. All six of the female Senators up for re-election won their races. Two of the women elected that I would like to make note of are Elizabeth Warren (the first female senator in Massachusetts), who fought a hard race and I believe will help shape the future of this country, and Tammy Baldwin (the first female senator in Wisconsin), who became the first openly gay person ever elected to the Senate but stated, “I didn’t run to make history, I ran to make a difference”.
Both Maryland and Maine have legalized gay marriage, which is the first time that gay marriage has been approved by statewide popular vote. Minnesota voters rejected an amendment that would define marriage as between a man and a woman. The president openly supports gay marriage, and I believe and have hope that in these next four years a larger change will be coming.
The president won Romney’s and Ryan’s home states, as well as Romney’s birth state. The future of America is not a group of older white men; it is a melting pot. If the GOP does not start to realize that Latino, African-American, women, and gay Americans are the face of America’s future, they are going to become a footnote in our history.