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"If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible, who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time, who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer."
Barack Obama, November 4, 2008

Following his victory in the 2008 United States presidential election, then-President-elect Barack Obama gave his victory speech[1] at Grant Park in his home city of Chicago,[2] on November 4, 2008, before an estimated crowd of 240,000.[3][4] Viewed on television and the Internet by millions of people around the globe, Obama's speech focused on the major issues facing the United States and the world, all echoed through his campaign slogan of change.[5] He also mentioned his maternal grandmother Madelyn Dunham, who had died just two nights earlier.

References in the speech

Crowd at Grant Park during Obama's speech

The speech heavily referenced the inaugural addresses of former presidents John F. Kennedy and Abraham Lincoln, and also referred to speeches of Martin Luther King Jr.[6]

Echoing Martin Luther King's "I've Been to the Mountaintop" address, he declared, "But tonight, because of what we did on this day, in this election, at this defining moment, change has come to America" and "The road ahead will be long, our climb will be steep. We may not get there in one year, or even in one term—but America, I have never been more hopeful than I am tonight that we will get there."[1] At another point in the speech he again referenced King when referring to the "arc of history", a phrase King used regularly, most notably after the Selma to Montgomery marches, saying "the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice".

Obama directly quoted Abraham Lincoln's first inaugural address, by saying "As Lincoln said to a nation far more divided than ours, we are not enemies but friends. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection."

Obama als

Following his victory in the 2008 United States presidential election, then-President-elect Barack Obama gave his victory speech[1] at Grant Park in his home city of Chicago,[2] on November 4, 2008, before an estimated crowd of 240,000.[3][4] Viewed on television and the Internet by millions of people around the globe, Obama's speech focused on the major issues facing the United States and the world, all echoed through his campaign slogan of change.[5] He also mentioned his maternal grandmother Madelyn Dunham, who had died just two nights earlier.

Securitybulletproof glass (2 inches (5.1 cm) thick, 10 feet (3.0 m) high, 15 feet (4.6 m) long) to each side of the lectern to deflect any shots from the skyscrapers overlooking Grant Park.[18][19] A no-fly zone was also imposed over the area, with only police helicopters allowed in the air.[19] The gathering involved the deployment of thousands of police, Army and Secret Service personnel. The event cost the Obama campaign an estimated $2 million.[20][21] Even with the large threat at hand, no arrests were made related to the event.

Music

Prior to Obama's emergence onto the stage, "Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours" by Stevie Wonder, "Only in America" by Brooks & Dunn, and "(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher" by Jackie Wilson were played. When Obama, Joe Biden, and their families appeared on stage following the speech, music from the films Remember the Titans, composed by Trevor Rabin, and The Patriot, composed by John Williams, was played.[22][23] "The Rising" by Bruce Springsteen was also played following the speech (Springsteen had endorsed Obama).

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c CQ Transcripts Wire (November 4, 2008).