AUSTIN, TX, OR NASHVILLE, TN–In one of the narrowest presidential votes in U.S. history, either George W. Bush or Al Gore was elected the 43rd president of the United States Tuesday, proclaiming the win "a victory for the American people and the dawn of a bold new era in this great nation."

Bush and Gore, one of whom called the election "a victory for America."

"My fellow Americans," a triumphant Bush or Gore told throngs of jubilant, flag-waving supporters at his campaign headquarters, "tonight, we as a nation stand on the brink of many exciting new challenges. And I stand here before you to say that I am ready to meet those challenges."

"The people have spoken," Bush or Gore continued, "and with their vote they have sent the message, loud and clear, that we are the true party of the people."

With these words, the crowd of Republicans or Democrats erupted.

Bush or Gore attributed his victory to his commitment to the issues that matter to ordinary, hardworking Americans. Throughout the campaign, the Republican or Democrat spoke out in favor of improving educational standards, protecting the environment, reducing crime, strengthening the military, cutting taxes, and reforming Social Security. He also took a strong pro-middle-class stand, praising America's working families as "the backbone of this great nation."

"During this campaign, I had the good fortune to meet so many of you. And I listened to your concerns," Bush or Gore said. "And do you know what I found? That your concerns are the same as mine. Like 64-year-old Rosemary Cullums of Wheeling, WV. She said to me, '[Mr. Bush or Mr. Gore], we need to restore a sense of values and decency to this country. I have three young grandchildren, and I worry about the filth they're exposed to on a daily basis from TV and the movies. We need Hollywood to take responsibility for its actions and stop peddling sex and violence to our young people.' I told Rosemary I agreed wholeheartedly and gave her my word that when I became president, I would demand accountability on the part of the entertainment industry. Would my [Democratic or Republican] opponent have said the same?"

"The greatest thing a president can do is set an example for the people," Bush or Gore continued. "And as a devoted family man with a wonderful wife and [two or four] wonderful children, I promise to make the White House a place Americans can feel good about."

The crowd erupted again, with thousands of delirious Republicans or Democrats waving signs reading, "America's Families For [Bush or Gore]" as a blizzard of red, white, and blue confetti fell from the ceiling.

During his 30-minute victory speech, the president-elect also praised his campaign manager, Joe Allbaugh or Donna Brazile, for refusing to resort to the "negative smear tactics of my opponent."

"Unlike my [Democratic or Republican] counterpart, my staff and I insisted that this election be about the issues," Bush or Gore said. "We refused to take the low road and stoop to dirty tricks in order to get elected. While [Mr. Gore or Mr. Bush] was busy with cheap innuendo and unfounded accusations, we were out there taking our message to the American people. And, judging from what happened today at the ballot box, you heard that message loud and clear. And I thank you."

More confetti rained down from the ceiling, this time accompanied by balloons.

Waving to acknowledge his supporters, the Ivy League graduate and scion of a political dynasty called for "a time of renewal and rebirth in America."

"America has always been the land of promise and possibility," Bush or Gore said. "And never has that been more true than today. The opportunities that stand before us are great. The challenges are many. But I am energized by what lies ahead. Make no mistake, there is much work to be done. But we are more than up to the task. Remember that I am here to work for you, the people. Because you are the people who put me here. This is a fresh start. Our children are the future. America is ready for change. And new ideas. And a fresh start."