I am humbled today to accept the people of the United States' will that I serve you as President. I ask that you hear and amplify the word "serve". I will demand of myself and all who choose to serve with me that we remind ourselves daily that the country is not here for us, but that we are here to serve her.
Today, I resign my membership in the Democratic Party. I have loved this party and continue to be honored by my relationship to her, but resign I must. As your President, as your servant, I am neither Democrat nor Republican. I am simply and best American.
H.L. Mencken taught us wisely, "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." On this night of the day in which the American people have called their politicians to change – profound and thoroughgoing, we do well to remember this.
It will not be change for the new "party in power" to now lord it over the previous one. It will not be change for a new set of ideologues to replace an older set.
It will be change for the political class to own, to immerse ourselves in, to fill ourselves with the awful calling to servant hood. I can't imagine a higher calling. I can't imagine something I'd rather dedicate my life to. I can't imagine a time when such servant hood was more needed by this country we love.
As President, my door and my ear will be open wide to anyone who comes with plans so simple and so powerful that even a child can recognize that they are good for all Americans. In balance, any plan designed to forward a political agenda will get the scantest possible hearing.
I will convene the congressional leadership of both parties, put them to work as one body and demand of them these simple powerful solutions to which they can unanimously agree. If the current leadership is unable or unwilling to produce such plans, I will move to the junior leadership, and if not them to the rank and file.
I am confident that clear honest leadership is available in our congress. I will find those capable of it and work with them to serve you the American people.
Why is it necessary that we make such drastic changes in the way we've done business for so many years? First, you, the American people have always deserved to be served in this fashion and second, the times demand it. We face an economic house out of order. Too many of us lack jobs. We are not taking care of those among us who are ill. We must work to deal with serious threats abroad and at home.
Clearly government is not the answer to all of these problems, but as it currently functions your government is the answer to none of them. We, the people, cannot afford the poorly functioning government we've abided in the past.
Tonight is not the night for specific remedies to these problems. In fact those remedies will be best honed in honest, open, careful deliberation among all of those you have chosen to serve you today. I can imagine some trepidation on your part hearing what I've just said. Solutions delayed are solutions denied. Give us 100 days and then decide. You will be amazed what an executive and legislative branch can do when they are focused on serving you and nothing else. It is my job to make certain that serving you is our focus. I will not let you down.
Are these remedies going to be easy? No. I would not wish them easy, because were they, they would call for less than our best. JFK said it, "We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard." Who among us has never heard a parent or grandparent who served their country at home or abroad during World War II not swell with pride as they discussed the shared suffering and deep abiding patriotism of those days?
We are being called to such a way. Our economic conditions open the door for us to decide. Are we willing to exchange cheap consumer goods for a healthier world? Can we consider opening foreclosed houses to people who can't currently afford to pay for them but can and will care for them and maintain them? Imagine us having less time to chase "stuff" and more to enjoy the love of our families. What if we were daily more focused on people than things? Any of us could then see that so many of these problems would be solved. This is the wisdom of our "greatest generation". They won it hard and now so will we.