For America’s black community in particular, the election result was a watershed moment.
In Harlem in New York, the quiet morning streets were evidence of the euphoric celebrations of the night before. Even the early risers wore smiles.
“I feel ecstatic. I couldn’t be happier today. I couldn’t be happier at all. Now my kids have something really to look forward to. It was like New Year’s Eve last night here,” said one Harlem resident.
Another spoke of his faith that the Democratic candidate would keep his pledges: “I expect him to do what he said he was going to do, I really do. It’s not about colour, it’s about who can bring this economy up, you understand, and put America back where America needs to be.”
“One good thing about him, as you see throughout the whole situation, the whole ordeal, he never mentioned colour because he was about everybody and we need someone like that,” added another Harlem local.
Obama’s campaign brought hope to an electorate that craved it. His victory has seen that hope turn to expectation.