By Joyce Flores
Though touted as a defining moment in the 2008 presidential campaign, Tuesday’s primaries did not determine who will win the Democratic presidential nomination.
Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., won the Texas primary, while Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., carried the Texas caucus, which accounts for 67 of the 228 delegates for Texas.
About 5,000 people joined the Obamas at Municipal Auditorium in downtown San Antonio for what they hoped would be a victory speech.
Most people could be seen wearing “Obama 08” T-shirts and waving American flags.
While people waited for Obama to appear, many danced to the country music playing on the loudspeakers to stay warm in the 58-degree night air.
Obama greeted the crowd and congratulated Clinton on her wins in Ohio and Rhode Island. He then informed the crowd of his win in Vermont and reassured them that he had the same delegate lead as he did before the primaries on Tuesday.
“No matter what happens tonight, we have nearly the same delegate lead as we did this morning, and we are on our way to winning this nomination,” Obama cried.
As the crowd cheered, Obama let them know that his race for the White House was not over.
“We were told this wasn’t possible. We were told the climb was too steep. We were told our country was too cynical — that we were just being naïve; that we couldn’t really change the world as it is,” Obama said. “And tonight, because of you — because of a movement you built that stretches from Vermont’s Green Mountains to the streets of San Antonio — we can stand up with confidence and clarity to say that we are turning the page, and we are ready to write the next great chapter in America’s story.”
He said he called Sen. John McCain to congratulate him for winning the Republican nomination.
He also said he looks forward to debating McCain because they have different views, especially on the war in Iraq.
He then compared McCain’s policies to that of President George W. Bush, which was greeted by a resounding “boo” by the crowd.
“He has seen where George Bush has taken our country, and he promises to keep us on the very same course. It’s the same course that threatens a century of wars in Iraq,” Obama said.
\“A course where we spend billions of dollars a week that could be used to rebuild our roads and our schools.”
His remarks were greeted with loud cheers from the crowd.
People of all ages could be seen waving campaign signs that read “change we can believe in.”
Roy Aguillon, a 15-year-old McCollum High School student, attended the rally with his friends because he said he really believed in Obama’s message.
“I’ve never heard the words unity and hope come out of a politician and believed them,” Aguillon said.
Even though the votes were too close to call Tuesday night, Margeret Lopez was sure that Obama would win.
She said she went to her precinct to caucus and then rushed downtown because she really wanted to see Obama. Lopez was accompanied by her friend Maria Webster.
Webster, who cannot vote because she is not a citizen, said if she could, she would vote for Obama.
“I’d vote for him because he’s African-American,” Webster said.
In any other century, it would be difficult for an African-American man to even run for president, Webster added.
Kristie Hernandez and Estee Sepulveda were at the rally as volunteers from California.
They also volunteered In the New Hampshire primary in January.
Sepulveda said she was tired of having the same two families in power.
“Ever since I was 8 years old, it’s been Bushes and Clinton.
“Two families cannot hold power,” she said.