The 2008 election was the first election in which I could legally vote for president and I could not have been happier. I was so excited to cast my vote for Barack Obama that my hands shook and my eyes welled up as I stepped into the voting booth. I don't think I'm alone in that — those were exciting times! On one side, we had sad, old John McCain and that mean, folksy simpleton Sarah Palin. On the other, we had the progressive and handsome Barack Obama, with his kickass wife and adorable daughters, and Uncle Joe Biden. The youth vote was pumped, SNL was funny and we were all wearing Shepard Fairey t-shirts and talking about Change We Can Believe In.
2012 has a different tone. We've grown up. We now understand that progress is slow to come by and that, when a country is as fucked up as the one Barack Obama inherited, things don't get better in four years. Then there's the man himself. While the president's done a lot of stuff we can be proud of, he's done some really shitty stuff as well. He's not the biggest advocator of civil liberties, his drones in Pakistan have killed countless citizens and he has that whole executive kill list. Sure, he's still charming and sings Al Green songs. He still has a kickass wife and adorable daughters. He's an advocate for gay and women's rights. There continue to be reasons to vote for Obama, certainly over his opponent Mitt Romney, but we're all doing it with much less of hitch in our step than we did 4 years ago.
This is a bummer, guys. We still need to be excited. I want to be excited. I want to, come the time the election is hopefully called in favor of Obama, get drunk and bang on pots in the street just like I did in 2008. The only way I can think to do this is to bring back some of what made 2008 so unique. Come on, friends! Let's travel back to a time when voting was a blast and not just something you did out of tired desperation. Let's revisit our favorite moments of the 2008 Presidential Election — the campaign, election night, Aretha Franklin's inauguration hat — and feed off their energy like a bunch of starved political vampires.
Here are some to get you started:
Kids from Atlanta's Ron Clark Academy perform "You Can Vote However You Like.
This is not just my favorite moment from the 2008 election. This is my favorite moment from human history.
Tina Fey as Sarah Palin
Now that we're no longer in danger of having her in the White House, we can hopefully appreciate the hilarity that is Sarah Palin.
The Michelle/Barack fist bump
Remember when rightwing nutjobs used this picture to prove that Michelle and Barack Obama were terrorists? That was fun.
Now it's your turn. Share your favorite election night memories, reminisce about Cindy McCain and hopefully we can ride this 2008 high to a 2012 victory.