Assemblywoman Angela V. McKnight (D-Hudson) issued the following statement Friday to express gratitude to Barack Obama upon the conclusion of his second term as president of the United States:
“As the first African-American woman to represent New Jersey’s 31st legislative district in the Assembly, I cannot help but draw inspiration from Barack Obama’s journey. For eight years, the president inspired me and so many others with his resolve and his spirit of optimism, even in the face of great opposition on all fronts. Obama is a man of character and great integrity who took seriously his duty to lead the free world. I have been so proud to have him represent our nation.
“One of my most cherished moments as a legislator thus far has been the day my community succeeded in our effort to rename P.S. 34 in Jersey City after President Barack Obama. For generations to come, students in that building will be reminded of the significance of the historic election of their school’s namesake. An African-American man born to a teenage mother worked hard, had big dreams and will be remembered as the president who rebuilt the economy after the Great Recession, provided millions of people with access to affordable health care, fought for equality for all Americans and made the call that brought Osama bin Laden to justice. Every child at that school will hear that story and know that nothing is impossible.
“In his 2004 speech to the Democratic National Convention, Barack Obama – then a state senator from Illinois – told America that ‘God’s greatest gift to us [is] … a belief that there are better days ahead.’ While I am saddened to see his time as president come to an end, I still have faith in those words, for I know that Barack Obama’s legacy of hope certainly will outlast his tenure in the White House.”