AP White House Correspondent Ben Feller, who has covered the presidencies of Barack Obama and George W. Bush, gives his big-picture analysis of what Washington will look like after Election Day 2012:
"President Barack Obama's victory means that everything he campaigned upon is alive and about to drive the political conversation with his adversaries. Every legacy of his first term is safe and enshrined to history.
"Yet big honeymoons don't come twice and Republicans won't swoon. If Obama cannot end gridlock, his second term will be reduced to veto threats, empty promises, end runs around Congress and legacy-sealing forays into foreign lands.
"Obama will push for higher taxes on the wealthy as a way to shrinking a choking debt and to steer money toward the programs he wants. He will try to land a massive financial deficit-cutting deal with Congress in the coming months and then move on to an immigration overhaul, tax reform and other bipartisan dreams.
"He will not have to worry that his health care law will be repealed, or that his Wall Street reforms will be gutted, or that his name will be consigned to the list of one-term presidents who got fired before they could finish. Voters stuck with him because they trusted him more to solve the struggles of their lifetime.
"America may not be filled with hope anymore, but it told Mitt Romney to keep his change."
— Ben Feller — Twitter http://twitter.com/benfellerdc
EDITOR'S NOTE — Election Watch shows you Election Day 2012 through the eyes of Associated Press journalists. Follow them on Twitter where available with the handles listed after each item.