Obama fans celebrate poll

TOAST: Members of a Nelson family celebrate the re-election of Barack Obama
TOAST: Members of a Nelson family celebrate the re-election of Barack Obama

Barack Obama may be president for four more years, but the United States faces huge challenges which will require wider co-operation, an American living in Nelson says.

"There are some really big issues that need to be tackled and as much as Obama supporters are happy we realise there's a lot of work to be done and it's going to take more than him," J Norness said.

Mr Norness, who is from Oregon state, and his Taranaki-born wife Rose Sorren-Norness hosted a pot-luck election party at their Nelson home last night.

The group, bar the one Romney supporter present, celebrated Mr Obama's win with many calling friends and family at home throughout the night to share the occasion.

Mr Norness said he personally thought the results were going to be closer, but others who had been following political commentary and prediction models more closely said the result was what the Obama team were picking.

Mr Norness said he thought Mr Obama's acceptance speech was pretty moving and cut through the political talk.

He said for the last three years the Republicans had controlled the House of Representatives and used their power to prevent things from getting done to aid the Republican challenger to getting into power.

He said the House now really had to get together and get the country working as it faced a huge financial cliff.

Prime Minister John Key was sending a letter to Mr Obama today and would also relay his congratulations in person at the East Asian Summit in Phnom Penh later this month. "The relationship between our two countries is an enduring and close one, and I look forward to developing it further, Mr Key said.

"With President Obama's re-election, there will be many opportunities to enhance the relationship, which is built on shared values, and a commitment to improve the prosperity and wellbeing of our people through initiatives such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership."