A Democrat abroad: "Barack Obama has a clear vision"
Faustina Mercado-Sandoval of Democrats Abroad Belgium on why Obama won and what happens next.
6 November 2008
Interest in the US presidential election was not limited to the United States, but many Americans overseas were also keen to cast their vote. Now that the die is cast we spoke to two key American players in Belgium, Faustina Mercado-Sandoval of Democrats Abroad Belgium and the chair of Republicans Abroad Belgium, Michael Kulbickas.
Flandersnews was keen to hear their analysis of the result and to learn what they expected of the future.
First Deanne Lehman set a number of points to Faustina Mercado-Sandoval of Democrats Abroad Belgium.
1. Barack Obama has won the election. What do you think the decisive factor was?
The condition of the economy, and the fact that over 50% of Americans believe the USA is on the wrong track. Barack Obama has a clear vision and plan to get our country back on the right track.
2. What do you think his main priorities will be in the first 90 days?
Zero in on the economy. A 90-day moratorium on mortgage foreclosures to allow Americans to refinance and keep their homes. Enact regulations on the market place. Possible stimulus package to jump-start the economy.
In the longer term?
Responsible withdrawal from Iraq and engage in Afghanistan. Roll back the Bush tax cuts. Start a universal health care plan. Reinvest in infrastructure and "Green" technology. Restore America's standing in the world.
3. The world is facing an economic crisis. How will Barack Obama deal with the challenge? What changes can we expect in economic policy?
Massive R&D in energy technologies. Reinstate or enact new regulations in the financial sector.
4. What difference will we see in foreign policy?
Greater cooperation and consultation with countries of the world.
Do you believe there will be any change in the relationship between the US and Europe?
I believe it will improve. More communication, cooperation on climate change, the global economy, energy technology, human rights, social justice.
5. Obama had a very ambitious campaign programme - will he be able to actually do everything he has promised to do?
90% of it. Especially if we get "60" in the Senate.
6. At the VRT (Flemish Public Broadcaster) when we were polling Americans to find out what their voting intentions were we had many more responses from pro-Obama people. Republicans seemed very reluctant to respond. Why do you think this was?
George Bush is such an unpopular president and some Republicans feel George W. Bush does not represent them. So they are reluctant to respond.
To read the interview with the chair of the Republicans in Belgium, Michael Kulbickas, click here: "Obama's presidency will no be a happy one".