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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 1586

Obama and the Triumph of Democracy

By Jesudasan Atputharajah

The re-election of Barrack Obama as the president of the US can be described as a triumph of democracy. The recent election was said to be a neck to neck fight and that it would be difficult for Obama to get re-elected.

Some even said that the Americans have tolerated a black man for four years and it will not be allowed to continue.

Yes; the Republicans fought tooth and nail to get Obama out but the democratic forces in the US rallied together and put the right man back in power.

It was Obama's all inclusive democratic approach that triumphed over vested interests and capitalist mentality. The success also vindicates the maturity of American democracy.

In his acceptance speech Obama mentioned about his ideals being watered by the principles of American democracy. His ideals reflected those of Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King. Obama has to face numerous problems which were purely circumstantial . Any candidate at US elections at this juncture has to face these problems.

Unemployment at historic levels, economic disasters, 'sandy' thunderstorm all coalesced together to give him the most insurmountable problems. Yet he did not relent. He and his supporters fought hard and came as victors.

Obama succeeded due to the support of multiculturalism which has emerged as a powerful factor in American politics. The US is like Canada, a country of immigrants, though the whites are well entrenched in powerful positions financially and ethnically.

The African, Hispanic and Asian Americans joining hands with progressive urban white voters together with large numbers of women who stood firm on their reproductive rights and the need for a more liberal society. Though Obama could not put in to practice many of the promises he made, people were able to visualize his difficulties and gave him the backing he very badly needed to succeed.

Obama's principles reflected the innovative thinking of US liberalism. His success in states like Ohio, Florida and Virginia prove his popularity with immigrants from nearby countries.

The working class white Americans also had common cause with multi-ethnic groups. Obama's massive job stimulation programs became popular with these groups. The heavily industrialized states of the mid-east coalesced with the Democratic diversity coalition. Obama's all-inclusive approach had brought him the victory but his second presidency is faced with numerous problems.

The country is politically divided into the blues and the reds-with the senate in control of the former and the house of representatives in the hands of the latter. Obama is intent on putting into practice the principles of democracy by calling the opposition for discussion to solve the country's economic problem and the fiscal cliff.

The immigration policy of the Democratic party appealed to the voters especially in Florida. Romney's strategy of blaming Obama for everything did not work.

Majority voters believed that Obama inherited the economic problems from the Bush administration. Obama's success was also due to his progressive, liberal policies that appealed to majority of the American voters. It is indeed inevitable that a man with global links like Obama-Indonesia, Kenya, Hawaii - should succeed in these times of globalization.

Obama also had the advantage of being the incumbent. He attracted the public eye by responding to crises. The new Pew Research Center poll suggested that Obama's response to Hurricane Sandy helped his image the week before the election.

All in all it is indeed a victory for democracy . The strength of democracy lies in the fact that the majority opinion is mostly valued. The fact that democracy triumphed in the US, reinforces the confidence in democracy throughout the world.

People all over the world will continue to think that America is a country that they can look up to for the challenges to democracy in their countries. Though all kinds of vested interests and capitalism were welded together to stop Obama from winning his second term of presidency, the forces of democracy brought him the victory. It is true that his problems are herculean but he will pursue for success in spite of the odds against him.

- Asian Tribune -

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