Bush Thanks Supporters, Reaches Out To Democrats In Victory Speech
President Bush declared victory yesterday. In doing so, he praised Sen. Kerry's "spirited" campaign, thanked his family and his supporters, and reached out to Democrats, telling them, "I will need your support and I will work to earn it." The CBS Evening News said "it was clear the President has scored a decisive re-election victory. With decisions now everywhere but Iowa, CBS News estimates the President won 30 states and 279 electoral votes. Senator Kerry: 19 states, 252 electoral votes. Mr. Bush also won more popular votes than any presidential candidate in history, 3.5 million more than Senator Kerry." Bush, says CBS, "fielded the concession call from John Kerry just after 11:00. Mr. Bush told Kerry he was an 'admirable and worthy opponent' and that he 'waged one tough campaign.' When asked if the two could work together after such a divisive campaign, the President's press secretary insisted 'absolutely.'"
As the Christian Science Monitor says today, "despite the gracious tone of the comments on both sides, the Bush-Cheney team made it clear that they considered their advantage in the popular vote, as well as gains in their majorities in both the Senate and House of Representatives, to be a mandate from the American people." Cheney said that Bush had run on a clear agenda and that "the nation resounded by giving him a mandate." The Washington Post (11/4, A32, VendeHei, Milbank) reports, "The president and his advisers interpreted Tuesday's election results as a ringing endorsement of his goals of reducing the size of government, providing taxpayers greater control over their income, and continuing, if not intensifying, the war on terrorism and other security threats."