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What’d you vote for? Keeping the peace

Nov 5th, 2008 | By | Category: Latest News, News

AMERICAN Ambassador William McCormick’s daughter would have voted for Barack Obama – but keeping the peace with dad prevailed.

“I did it to keep my dad quiet,” smiled Sarah McCormick at last night’s American Embassy function in Wellington to watch the election: “I voted for John McCain.”

“It’s a mailing vote, so they (Dad) usually see it, and I’d rather not get in an argument.”

Ambassador McCormick (pictured), a Republican, was appointed to his post by Republican President George W. Bush.

Sarah, a former Canadian film school student now working in New Zealand, obviously takes a diplomatic approach to voting.

“Having my parents do what they do, I meet a lot of politicians, and they are not very down-to-earth,” says Ms McCormick, who is impressed with the qualities of President elect, Barack Obama.

“He’s a straight-shooter and he seems pretty ballsy, too. He doesn’t hide behind anyone.”

When asked if he would have been disappointed if his daughter had voted for Obama, Ambassador McCormick replied: “She is a free, wonderful woman, with her own thinking. She can do anything she wants.”

Cautious reaction from Americans living in NZ

“And I’ve looked over and I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you, but I want you to know tonight, that we as a people will get to the Promised Land” – Martin Luther King, April 3, 1968.

President elect Barack Obama said after the election: “This victory alone is not the change we seek” – and Americans living in Wellington seem to agree with him.

Amanda Williams of Ohio (22) said she really didn’t know how much change would happen, as America was not yet ready for big change.

“It will be more of a clean-up job for a long time. [We shouldn’t] think he will change a lot straight away.”

She was one of a number of Americans NewsWire interviewed at an election day function run by the US embassy.

They expressed concern that if Obama did not step up to the pedestal supporters have placed him on, disappointment might be expressed in racial terms.

“People might blame it on the fact he’s black, instead of admitting he could just be a young man who needs more political experience,” said student Jamie Hunt of Ohio

Ms Hunt said she voted Republican as she believed someone more experienced in politics and economics was needed to pull America out of its current slump.

Sarah Benjamin of Pennsylvania said change would be slow in coming ,but still believed Obama was the man the US needed: “Obama will be a fresh face and help improve America’s image and its pride. He’s what we need.”

Others believed the new president would not change the country in any big way.

“All candidates make big promises during elections, but how often do they follow through on them,” said Adam Clauss from Ohio, a McCain supporter.

Obama supporter Alana Bowman from Los Angeles thought having “a man of colour” to lead the country towards “the American dream” would help people embrace diversity.

“[Obama is] more creative than other presidents, because he is younger and neutral,” she said.

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