Plenty of people are saying that Barack Obama's landslide victory Tuesday night marks a new century, a new beginning for our country -- but what about a new, more likable Elisabeth Hasselbeck? Because, I tell you, the perky punching bag was in rare form this morning on "The View" (watch the videos below).
She starts by relating how she told her daughter this morning that Obama won the presidency. When her daughter asked who lost, Hasselbeck says, she responded steadily: "No one lost today." No kidding, this from the woman who just yesterday defended the McCain-Palin ticket almost to the point of tears. Then she launches into a gracious concession:
Today, seriously, and God knows I fought hard on the other side, but today is a victory for this country to have Barack Obama be our next president, the first black president, the first black first lady [and] family … I will get in a long line of supporters -- because I wasn't the first -- but I will jump in that line and support our president because that is what, as an American, I believe we should do.
This is the same woman who yesterday determinedly reminded us about Bill Ayers, the Rev. Wright and "Goddamn America!" The same woman who proclaimed that Obama wasn't her president yet, and that, gosh darn it, she would "fight till the very end!" Somehow, I didn't expect her to ever stop fighting.
As though this weren't shocking enough, then it's over to first-time voter Sherri Shepherd. In the past, the only emotion she ever elicited in me was that of utter no-she-didn't-just-say-that disbelief, but today she lubricated the tear ducts. "I sat by my son's bed and" -- here she starts to choke up and Hasselbeck (Hasselbeck!) grabs her hand in support -- "people of color, we've always had these limitations on us. I remember … one time when I said, 'I want to be a comic and an actor,' [someone in my family] said, 'No, you'll get a job at the post office. They don't let people like us do that.'" At this point she's passionately gesticulating and her voice is catching. "So, to look at my son and say, 'There are no limitations on you,' it is an extraordinary day for me."
Amen to that -- to all of it.