Illinois Senator Barack Obama has now officially declared his candidacy for the United States Presidential Election.
Obama announced his candidacy on the steps of the Old State Capitol in Springfield, Illinois, following in the footsteps of the nation’s 16th President, Abraham Lincoln.
He told a cheering crowd of onlookers: “It was here, in Springfield, where North, South, East and West come together that I was reminded of the essential decency of the American people — where I came to believe that through this decency, we can build a more hopeful America.”
If elected, he would be the nation’s first African-American President.
“And that is why, in the shadow of the Old State Capitol, where Lincoln once called on a divided house to stand together, where common hopes and common dreams still live, I stand before you today to announce my candidacy for president of the United States of America.”
Among the many problems Obama said he would face are: poor schools, economic hardships, oil dependence, and his pledge to provide “universal health care in America by the end of the president’s first term.”