Although Barack Obama won, the bitter campaign divided the US. The president emerges with a tenuous mandate and an urgent domestic to-do list. Abroad, a new world order is rising from the euro crisis, the Arab Spring and emerging Asia, and US leadership will be key. In this series, GlobalPost's far-flung correspondents bring you insights into how President Obama's re-election will impact their regions.
Oh what a year it was! Barely had the nation’s celebratory New Year’s hangover subsided when another headache hit the public consciousness: the Iowa caucuses, on Jan. 3, signaling the official start of the presidential campaign. It kicked off a year of finger pointing, backbiting, mudslinging and name-calling.
IOWA CITY, Iowa — Barely had the confetti stopped swirling on Election Night when the recriminations began. The howls of anger and pain from the political right almost drowned out the roars of jubilation from relieved and excited liberals. The challenger, Mitt Romney, was not conservative enough, they fumed. No, he was too conservative. It was his constant policy ballet that doomed his candidacy. No, Romney was too entrenched in unpopular positions to appeal to a wide enough swath of the public.
HANOVERTON, Ohio — Slightly hoarse but jubilant, newly re-elected President Barack Obama sounded a message of hope and reconciliation in his victory speech, delivered in what was for most Americans the wee hours of Wednesday morning. Obama made a clean sweep of the table — while Florida is still not completely decided, Obama reached the magic number of 270 Electoral College votes needed to win even without Florida’s 29.