John McCain conceded the 2008 election before a crowd of supporters that sometimes interrupted him with their disappointed shouts. But the Republican presidential nominee offered a genuinely conciliatory speech, emphasizing the historic nature of Obama's win and pledging to work together with the president elect.
"Senator Obama has achieved a great thing for himself and for his country and I applaud him for it."
"...I urge all Americans who supported to join me in not just congratulating him but offering our next president the goodwill.... to come together.... bridge our differences, restore our prosperity and defend our security in a dangerous world.... and leave our children and grandchildren a better world than we inherited."
"...Though we fell short, the failure was mine and not yours... This campaign was and will remain the greatest honor of my life."
All that remains is Obama's victory speech. Expectations for the well-regarded orator are high, even if he weren't speaking at a historic moment. Obama has a chance to add to his political momentum. As David Gergen just said on CNN: "The speech tonight becomes very, very important."