Obama’s latest challenge: bridging the gap

Former foreign correspondent for CNN, Mike Chinoy

By Tam Yat Pang

Former foreign correspondent for CNN, Mike Chinoy, said that presidential election result shown the country was divided evenly, President Obama have to face the challenge of bridging the gap between the democratic and republican parties.

According to CNN projections, President Barack Obama has surpassed critical 270 votes in the Electoral College to win re-election and defeated Republican challenger Mitt Romney. Although Obama received nearly 100 more electoral votes than Romney, there was not more than 2% difference in popular votes between two candidates.

“The popular votes are very close indeed. I think president Obama has to bridge the gap between two different parties, both parties have different political views but the poll clearly shown supporters are evenly divided, so this would be a tough task for him after winning re-election,” Chinoy said.

The Consulate General of the United State Hong Kong has organized a special event on the presidential election day, allowing more than 100 visitors including media, guests and students to visit the consulate general, conducted a mock voting for U.S. president and watched the live television coverage on the election.

Cristina-Astrid Hansell

Vice Consul of Consulate General of the U.S. Hong Kong, Cristina-Astrid Hansell said that low young voter turnout was “the saddest issue in the U.S. presidential election” this year. She added, around 3,000 popular votes from Florida youth might have already make a change in the result.

“Florida has 29 electoral votes and the result shown there was only 0.8% difference between Obama and Romney in popular votes. What if the teenagers went to exercise their right to vote but not slept on bed, there could be a different result for the election. It is such a disappointment that teenagers gave up their rights to vote,” Hansell said in her speech.

Director of public affairs, Nini J. Forino

According to Director of public affairs of Consulate General of the U.S. Hong Kong, Nini J. Forino said that there is “nothing like voting” which can voice out one’s opinion and she was proud with the democratic system of U.S. government.

“Voting allows us to voice out our opinion. Therefore, a mock voting booth was set up for participants to get a little taste of democracy with mock election. The result of the mock voting was a landslide, 118 out of 128 votes went to Obama and that was quite unlike the choice of U.S. voters,” said Forino.


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