Major news outlets had called the election for Obama at about 11:20 p.m. Tuesday, but Mr. Romney delayed conceding until early Wednesday morning, when his advisers had determined there was no credible way to keep fighting, even as Florida remained too close to call with Obama slightly ahead. The president won all the other states he had taken in 2008, except Indiana and North Carolina. If Obama’s lead in Florida holds, he will have won the Electoral College 332 to 206.
In what was likely his final moment in the national spotlight, Romney wished Obama well.
“This is a time of great challenges for America, and I pray that the president will be successful in guiding our nation,” Romney told his supporters in Boston.
But the outlook for a better atmosphere in Washington is uncertain at best.
Before Tuesday, Obama had suggested that his reelection would change the dynamic in Washington – that the people will have spoken, and that the Republicans would have to take heed. But the top Republican in Washington, House Speaker John Boehner, wasted no time Tuesday night in warning Obama that he and the Democrats are still not the only game in town.
“For two years, our majority in the House has been the primary line of defense for the American people against a government that spends too much, taxes too much, and borrows too much when left unchecked,” Mr. Boehner said.
In the Senate, where Democrats appear poised to build on their 53-to-47 majority, the threat of Republican filibusters will continue. Sixty votes are required to halt a filibuster.