Written following the 2016 General Election.

As I stand here before you today, millions of you see a woman President; others see the leader of the free world; some of you see a liberal Democrat; and unfortunately, there are those of you looking with disappointment at the opponent you wish had lost the election.

Regardless of who YOU see standing at this podium, each one of you can rest assured that I see you only as. . .

“My Fellow Americans.”

I am honored to serve you.

Whether you are with me or not, I represent each one of you equally regardless of who you supported in this election, whether you agree with my policies, or are my harshest critic.

And my first promise to you is that during my term of public service, now and forever more, I consider it my sacred duty to put this great nation foremost in all that I do and every decision that I make.

As your President, I will always do what I believe is in all our best interests, and act in a manner that places you before my party, before my family, and before myself.

Your voice WILL be heard.

You have my word on that.

As we close the chapter on this long and arduous campaign, we must not dwell on the difficulties we have faced and what has divided us, but embrace what we in common.

We all want the same things: safety and security, a bright future for our children, health and prosperity, a stable world.

Let us celebrate our diversity, not our differences, and remember that we only disagree on the best method to achieve our goals, and which road map we will follow. The answers we seek may come from either side of the aisle, and I pledge to work with Republicans, Independents, business leaders, and private citizens to find them.

We have a great deal of work ahead of us, and I cannot do it alone. I need your help.

We need to put the past behind us and move forward toward the common good, focusing on the future and the challenges that lie before us. . . for there are many.

We face a global climate crisis, unrest in many countries, crumbling infrastructure, a need to expand healthcare, a growing addiction crisis, and so much more — we know the list is long.

We have a game plan for these first 100 days that will begin to tackle many of the biggest problems facing our country, but we need you to work with us, to lend your support, voice your concerns, offer your ideas and, if nothing else, be patient. These enormous challenges are complex and difficult and will not be resolved overnight.

Not only must we address the immediate challenges, but we must also look toward those quickly coming our way, for the future will not wait.

We need to begin examining how automation will affect our economy, the role of technology in the workplace, privacy concerns, educating our workforce to remain competitive in the global marketplace, furthering space exploration — and so many other issues that we haven’t even considered.

The speed at which these changes are coming is astonishing and it will require that we be ready to offer our best efforts to meeting them head-on.

But whatever comes our way, know this. . . we are a nation that has never backed away from solving the tough problems, we have never shirked our responsibilities to the rest of the planet.

And under my watch, we will continue our legacy as a respected nation — one that unites rather than divides, one that leads rather than imposes, and one that offers a beacon of hope rather than the darkness of despair.

I believe in America and I believe in you.

I ask that you believe in me.

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Shelly Fagan

Shelly Fagan is a freelance writer living in Arizona. She is passionate about American politics, business, universal basic income and worker rights. Follow her on Twitter @FaganWrites or on Medium at https://medium.com/@shellyfaganaz

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