Start again

By now, citizens of Sacramento, not to mention the rest of the country, have consumed copious news/analysis/opinion about the triumphant win of President Barack Obama at the ballot box on November 6.

Yes, the victory makes him the first incumbent president since Franklin D. Roosevelt to be returned to office despite an unemployment rate as high as ours. Yes, his campaign staff designed and executed a brilliant ground game—taking the population’s changing demographics well into account—in the country’s fabled swing states, like Ohio, Iowa and Pennsylvania.

And yes, the election was a thankful repudiation of the right-wing surge that swept the House of Representatives in 2010 and a refutation of its communication arm—Fox News—with its headstrong insistence until the end (despite what the polls, the math and Nate Silver reported) that GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney would win easily thanks to a sizeable pool of self-identifying “moderate” voters.

But all of that is now in the past and, as fictional President Josiah “Jed” Bartlett would ask, “What’s next?”

On election night, Obama told an exultant Chicago convention hall that we are going to have to face the “difficult compromises needed to move this country forward.” And there is no doubt the country needs leaders who are simply willing to talk with one another. So, we understand compromises that lie ahead.

But we’re hoping that Obama begins his new term with a corresponding passion to accommodate more sparingly, engage executive powers more frequently and use the power of his bully pulpit more effectively, especially when it comes to the climate crisis and the economy.

We’re happy as hell to have Obama returning to the White House. But we’d be ecstatic if—for round two—he brought it full strength.