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US Election Day - from our US correspondent

LATEST America votes for change: Barack Obama elected first black President of the United States

de Adrian Novac, transl. V.O.
Miercuri, 5 noiembrie 2008, 2:32 English | Top News

Illinois Senator Barack Obama was declared winner of the November 4 elections by major US television channels at about 4.00 a.m. GMT on Wednesday. The Democratic candidate becomes the 44th President and the first black President of the United States once he secured more than the 270 electoral votes necessary for the White House. He won all five states where voting closed at 4.00 a.m. GMT - California, Hawaii, Idaho, Oregon and Washington, securing more than 300 electoral votes, according to preliminary results.

Update: John McCain: "The American people have spoken, and they've spoken clearly". McCain congratulated Obama for his victory

Prior to that, Obama appeared to have secured some 207 electoral votes while Republican John McCain recorded some 141, according to unofficial results of US elections at about 04.00 a.m. GMT. Obama had the upper hand in a series of East Coast states including Massachusetts, Maryland, Connecticut, New Jersey, Delaware, Vermont and District of Columbia. He also seems to have secured victory in the key states of Pennsylvania and Ohio as well as Maine, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, New York, Iowa and Minnesota. McCain won South Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee, West Virginia, Kentucky, Alabama and Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Utah, Kansas and Mississippi.

Key moments of the voting process and vote counting:

Romanian time:  Barack Obama delivers his first speech to the thousand supporters in Grant Park, Chicago: the victory is yours!

06.25 Romanian time: Democrat supporters celebrate Obama's victory across America in New York, Chicago, Washington.

06.20 Romanian time: incumbent US President George W. Bush congratulates Obama for his victory.

Romanian tine: McCain confirms his defeat in a speech in Phoenix (Arizona). The Republican declares he congratulated Obama.

Romanian time: Obama secures Florida and leades with 333 to 155 electoral votes

Romanian time: Obama secures all five states and becomes US President. The toll until now: 295 to 147 electoral votes

05.50 Romanian time: Obama secures Virginia

Romanian time: McCain wins South Dakota.

Romanian time: Democrats now have 52 Senate mandates compared to Republicans' 37

05.30 Romanian time: McCain wins 3 out of 5 electoral votes in Nebraska

Romanian time: McCain leads in Mississippi

Romanian time: Obama leads in Iowa, McCain gets Utah and Kansas

05.00 Romanian time: Voting ends in Iowa, Montana, Nevada and Utah

04.50 Romanian time: Obama leads in key state of New Mexico

04.45 Romanian time: Obama leads in key state of Minnesota

04.35 Romanian time: McCain wins Texas

04.25 Romanian time: Obama has 190 votes, McCain - 90

04.15 Romanian time: Obama said to win Ohio.

04.00 Romanian time: Voting closes in another 15 states including Arizona, Colorado, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan and New York

03.40 Romanian time: McCain said to lead in Georgia, Indiana

03.35 Romanian time: Virginia is undecided

Romanian time: McCain leads in Alabama and Arkansas.

03.01 Romanian time Obama predicted winner in Illinois, Massachusetts

03.00 Romanian time: Obama wins Pennsylvania and New Hampshire - unofficial results

02.50 Romanian time: Unofficial results put McCain ahead in South Carolina

02.45 Romanian time: No clear winner in Ohio

02.35 Romanian time: FoxNews predics McCain win in West Virginia

02.30 Romanian time: Vote closing in West Virginia, North Carolina and Ohio

Thousands convene in Grant Park in Chicago, where Obama prepares victory party

02.10 Romanian time: McCain leads in Florida (54% to 46%) and Virginia (53% to 46%).

02.05 Romanian time: Fox News predicts McCain wins elections in Kentucky while Obama seems to have the upper hand in Vermont. The republican would thus gain eight electoral votes while Obama would have three. Official results are not official yet.

02.00 Romanian time: Vote closing in Georgia, Florida, Virginia, South Carolina and Kentucky.

01.00 Romanian time: Voting stations closing in some parts of Indiana and Kentucky.

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