Voters in Maine, Maryland and Washington state approved same-sex marriage in local referendums. Colorado and Washington state voted to legalise recreational use of marijuana. California voters rejected a proposal to abolish the death penalty. Puerto Ricans voted in a referendum on whether to maintain their status as a US “free associated state”. Early results suggest a majority answered “No”, voting in favour of becoming the 51st US state, if Congress approves the move.
World leaders lineup to offer congratulations
British Prime Minister David Cameron said he was looking forward to working again with his ‘friend.’ ‘Warm congratulations to my friend Barack Obama,’ Cameron wrote on his Twitter account. ‘Look forward to continuing to work together.’Australia’s Prime Minister Julia Gillard sent her congratulations via Twitter as well. ‘My sincere congratulations to President BarackObama on your re-election! JG’ she tweeted. Australia Prime Minister Julia Gillard later followed up her tweet with a statement in which she urged Obama to play a leading role in issues ranging from climate change to relations with Muslims. Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu also sent his congratulates. ‘The strategic alliance between Israel and the US is stronger than ever. I will continue to work with President Obama in order to assure the interests that are vital to the security of the citizens of Israel,’ he said.Canadian PM Stephen Harper also issued a statement saying: ‘I look forward to working with the Obama Administration.’Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda, whose country is America’s biggest ally in Asia and hosts almost 40,000 of its military personnel, told reporters ‘we look forward to continued cooperation’ following the president’s re-election.European Union leaders have also congratulated the president, saying they look forward to boosting ties with the United States and cooperating on global challenges. European Union President Herman Van Rompuy and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso published a statement in which they addressed their ‘warm congratulations to President Obama’.‘The United States is a key strategic partner of the European Union and we look forward to continuing the close cooperation established with President Obama over these last four years, to further strengthening our bilateral ties and to jointly addressing global challenges, including in the fields of security and economy,’ they said. They also ‘look forward to meeting President Obama at an early date in order to reconfirm our priorities and provide renewed impetus to our joint action. ’Russian President Vladimir Putin took a “very positive view” of Mr. Obama’s victory in a message of greetings he sent to the US President, the Kremlin said. “We express hope that the positive beginnings in bilateral relations and in international cooperation between Russia and the United States in the interest of global security and stability will continue to develop and improve,” said Dmitry Peskov, Mr. Putin’s press secretary, quoted by The Hindu. Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, who signed a new nuclear arms cut pact with the US during his presidency two years ago, praised Mr. Obama as an “understandable and predictable partner.”