Among the elements Philippine viewers noticed during the recent Presidential elections in the United States was the absence of a central body overseeing and tabulating the vote.
Even during the local US Embassy’s public-held election watch events here on November 7, there seemed to be no other source of election results than the news media.
At one such gathering in a mall in Quezon City, the center of attraction was a giant LED screen which, in between intermissions and speeches, showed CNN’s marathon election night coverage.
As a time zone of precincts closed each hour, the network anchors would sift through exit poll and survey numbers to gauge how the voters would choose.
Minutes later, CNN would call which states would be won by either Pres. Barack Obama of the Democratic Party or his Republican challenger Gov. Mitt Romney.
A cheer later arose from the crowd assembled at the mall when CNN began to project a substantial increase in state votes that would bring President Obama closer to re-election.
From CNN’s live shots, the scene in Manila mimicked those all over the US. Party supporters and spectators at public spaces monitored big displays of telecasts from CNN, FOX, NBC, and other US networks.
All of the news organizations had separate means and resources for collating the popular vote. Yet somehow, their final calls matched up—President Obama had won four more years.