President Barack Obama accepted his historic second term, paying homage to the nation's roots while a delivering a powerful forward-looking glimpse of what to expect from the next four years of his administration.
"Tonight, more than 200 years after a former colony won the right to determine its own destiny, the task of perfecting our union moves forward,” Obama said to his crowd of supporters at McCormick Place in Chicago.
The president first took the stage with the First Lady Michelle Obama, and their two daughters Malia and Sasha. “Michelle, I have never loved you more," the president said. "I have never been prouder to watch the rest America fall in love with you too as our nation’s First Lady.”
The president tipped his hat to his opponent Mitt Romney for a hard-fought campaign, and suggested the campaign trail would not be the last seen of the GOP contender. “We may have battled fiercely, but it's only because we love this country deeply and we care so strongly about its future,” Obama said.
And from his campaign headquarters where his election campaign began four years ago, the president reiterated the core of his 2008 message of hope.
"I've never been more hopeful about our future. I've never been more hopeful for America," Obama said. "And I ask you to sustain that hope."