The picture of the President hugging the first lady that was tweeted from Obama's Twitter account was retweeted more than 400,000 times. Twitter said it was its most retweeted message ever. -- AP
President Obama: “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. It moves forward because of you. It moves forward because you reaffirmed the spirit that has triumphed over war and depression, the spirit that has lifted this country from the depths of despair to the great heights of hope - the belief that while each of us will pursue our own individual beliefs, we are a family and we will rise and fall together as one people.”
“Tonight in this election, 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 are on our way back, and we know in our hearts, for the United States of America, the best is yet to come,” the president said.
“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 have to fix that,” Obama said. “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.”
“I just spoke to Gov. Romney, and I congratulated him and Paul Ryan on a hard-fought campaign. We may have battled fiercely, but it’s only because we love this country deeply, and we care so deeply about its future,” Obama said. “In the weeks ahead, I look forward to sitting down with Gov. Romney to talk about ways we (can) work together to move America forward.”
Obama will not be getting Sasha and Malia a second dog, he said. (He promised them a first dog in his 2008 victory speech.) “But I will say that, for now, one dog is probably enough.”
Following the NewsHour broadcast tonight, Hari and Christina will provide a video debrief of the evening on our livestream.
“Democracy in a nation of 300 million can be noisy and messy and complicated. We have our own opinions. Each of us has deeply held beliefs. And when we go through tough times, when we make big decisions as a country, it necessarily stirs up controversy. That won’t change after tonight - and it shouldn't,” the president said.
Obama: “Despite all our differences, most of us share certain hopes for America’s future. We want our kids to grow up in a country where they have access to the best schools and the best teachers. A country that lives up to its reputation as a global leader in technology … free of debt ... that isn’t threatened by inequality or ... a warming planet.”
Obama: “Our economy is recovering. A decade of war is ending. A long campaign is now over. And whether I earned your vote or not, I have listened to you, I have learned from you. You have made me a better president.”
UPDATE: Maine joins Maryland as states that have approved same-sex marriage laws Tuesday.
“Tonight, you voted for action, not politics as usual. You elected us to focus on your jobs, not ours. And in the coming weeks and months, I am looking forward to reaching out and working with leaders from both parties, to meet the challenges we can only solve together,” Obama said.
“This country has more wealth than any nation -- but that’s not what makes us rich. We have the most powerful military, but that’s not what makes us strong,” Obama said. “What makes America exceptional are the bonds that hold together the most diverse nation on earth, the belief that our destiny is shared.”
“I am hopeful tonight because I’ve seen this spirit at work in America. I’ve seen it on the shores of New Jersey and New York, where leaders from both parties have swept aside their differences to help their communities rebuild after the wreckage of a terrible storm.”
Obama: “I’ve never been more hopeful about America, and I ask you to sustain that hope. I’m not talking about blind optimism -- the kind of hope that just ignores the enormity of the task ahead … I have always believed that hope is that stubborn thing inside us that insists, despite all the evidence to the contrary, that something better awaits us, so long as we have the courage to keep reaching.”
“We are not as divided as our politics suggest; we are not as cynical as the pundits believe. … We remain more than a collection of red states and blues states - we REMAIN the United States,” President Obama said.
UPDATE: Alaska has gone to Romney, according to the AP.
Joe Biden and his wife, Jill have joined the Obamas on stage.
Obama’s speech is being streamed live on the Romney for President website, Judy Woodruff reports. “A classy moment,” she said.
Red, white and blue confetti spills onto Obama and crowd.
The president waves to the crowd from the confetti-strewn stage.
Brooks on Obama’s speech: “That was excellent. It brought me back actually to the Iowa Caucus victory speech. And I liked, as Judy mentioned, the line, ‘I listened, I learned.’ …”
Shields: “Contrast that with the first debate - it was a different man; it was a different energy, a sense of optimism, and sense of possibility. It was a call to arms -- just the question is, the mission has yet to be defined.”
Gwen Ifill noted that the Obama speech was live-streamed on Romney’s website -- “a classy gesture.”
Michael Beschloss: More ambitious than most, “It had more of the texture of a convention speech.”
Richard Norton Smith: “It imparted a dignity, even a majesty, to a political campaign that has often been without.” And yet the incongruity: “Now comes the hard part.”
Stuart Rothenberg: “The question for me is, will the president show leadership - and how does he define that. It’s one thing to bring your party along if they like the agenda. But if he really wants to reach out, you have to ask whether he can bring his party along when they don’t like the deal.”
Stuart: “I think Mark got it exactly right earlier: The president is going to have to get his hands dirty.”
Christina: “This is rhetoric we’ve heard from him before - but we’re already seeing statements from the leadership of both parties saying they want to work with him.”
Mark: “The challenges are enormous - but he sounded tonight like he was energized and inspired and determined. The test will be - we’ll need it soon. It won’t be in 2012; we’ll need it between now and the end of the year” to deal with the fiscal cliff and the expiration of the Bush-era tax cuts.
David Brooks: “It was a big agenda. My reflection on the night is how the country has changed,” especially in terms of leadership diversity, many more women senators, one openly gay. “The country is really in the midsts of a demographic, cultural transition. This is a big, long-term thing … in the middle of a big economic transition.”
Judy Woodruff of her recent reporting: “Many people were saying things to me like, ‘I don’t want to be in this country if this president is reelected.”
Mark: “You’re never going to reach those people, Judy. … Rush Limbaugh said he’d move to Canada if we passed health care reform. Last time I checked, he’s still here.”
Stay tuned on our livestream for our after hours special, starting in just minutes. NewsHour night owls Hari Sreenivasan and Christina Bellantoni will sum up the night.
The NewsHour broadcast is signing off. Thanks for tuning in, folks!