Barack Obama won the 2012 presidential election by 2,626,958 popular votes and 97 electoral votes on Tuesday night to become the 17th president in U.S. history to be elected to a second term.
In what some had feared would be a repeat of the 2000 election, over 80,000 reports of voting problems were made throughout the nation, including voting machine malfunctions in Ohio and power outages in the Northeast.
Obama won over the swing states of Ohio, Wisconsin, and Virginia, with Florida considered too close to call at the time this article was being written.
In his victory speech Tuesday night, Obama told his supporters, “You, the American people, reminded us that while our road has been hard, while our journey has been long, we have picked ourselves up, we have fought our way back, and we know in our hearts that for the United States of America, the best is yet to come.”
According to exit polls, Americans who decided at the last minute who they would cast their vote for chose Obama over a slight margin, partially because of the president’s response to Hurricane Sandy.
Obama received the most support from African Americans, Hispanics and the Millennial Generation, while Romney was favored by seniors and Caucasians.
No previous presidential candidate with such a high percentage of the white vote failed to win the election.
“I so wish that I had been able to fulfill your hopes to lead the country in a different direction, but the nation chose another leader,” Mitt Romney told his supporters after results were announced. "So Ann and I joing with you to earnestly pray for him and for this great nation."
He also stated that, "This nation, as you know, is at a critical point. At a time like this we can't risk bipartisan bickering and political posturing. Our leaders have to reach across the aisle to do the people's work, and we citizens also have to rise to occasion."
The incumbent president received votes from 90 percent of Democrats and almost the same percentage of liberals. He was also popular with female voters, including two-thirds of unmarried women, and more than six in 10 Americans who say that they never attend religious services.
Romney was favored by married women, white men, and more than 90 percent of Republicans and conservatives. He also received the votes of more than six in 10 Americans who do attend religious services.
According to USA Today, eight in 10 Americans who think that "government should do more to solve problems" cast their votes for Obama, while a nearly equal amount who think that "the government is doing too many things" cast their votes for Romney.
"I want to thank every American who participated in this election, whether you voted for the very first time or waited in line for a very long time. By the way, we need to fix that," Obama told the nation. "Whether you pounded the pavement or picked up the phone, whether you held an Obama sign or a Romney sign, you made your voice heard and you made a difference."