Barack Obama was always going to be a historic figure in the sense that he is the first black president of the world’s oldest democracy.

As of Tuesday night, President Obama has a distinct chance of going down in history as a transformative president in the FDR mold. With the voters' decision, it becomes more difficult to undo what Obama has done to change the United States, most notably the government’s seizure of one sixth of the economy, under the rubric of ObamaCare.

Obama himself seems (at least to me) an odd man to bestride history like a colossus. One of the things I think historians will puzzle over is how such a seemingly unlikely man became a figure of historical significance. Sometimes he just seems to want to be considered cool. He is obviously infatuated with celebrity and has a keen appreciation of the finer things (as long as they aren’t too laboriously earned in some bourgeois project). But he has changed us.

I don’t know how people felt after Goldwater's loss. But I was scarcely ambulatory yesterday. It was one of the most solemn days of my life. It felt as if the republic were slipping away. A massive intrusion into our lives had been ratified by an election. Can we regain our country? A lot hinges on what happens with ObamaCare and what we do from now on.

Grace Marie-Turner of the Galen Institute, who fought the good fight against ObamaCare, writes:

ObamaCare will continue to barrel toward implementation in 2014, but its failings will become clearer and clearer every day.

The law is in diametric opposition to the workings of our economy and the spirit of freedom on which this country was founded. This is not a political assessment but rather a recognition of the reality of the unworkability of the law — its mandates on otherwise free citizens who will resist, massive new entitlement spending we can’t afford, and centralization of decision-making over health care, even life and death decisions.

We now face the very real danger, as Supreme Court Justice Kennedy warned, that this law will change “the relationship of the Federal Government to the individual in the very fundamental way.”

Yesterday’s election results were devastating, not because so many Republican candidates lost, but because I wonder today if I really know the country I love. By re-electing President Obama, a majority of those who voted chose a president who believes in expanding government power over rewarding the enterprising and creative spirit of hard-working Americans who built this prosperous nation.

America will be a very different country if we continue on this path.

Turner notes that the House will continue to hold hearings on the impact of Obamacare on job creation, the crushing taxes it requires, and the burden it creates for future generations. There are 35 lawsuits against ObamaCare, including lawsuits by Catholic organizations whose religious liberty is threatened under the law.

But the task has become much, much more complex and the path forward to right our health sector and economy has become much more difficult.

Our own Heather Higgins, chairman of IWF’s board and president and CEO of our sister organization, Independent Women’s Voice, and another valiant fighter, writes in a letter to supporters:

The road ahead will not be easy.  But we're not giving up.  One election will not stop us. Now, with implementation of ObamaCare on the horizon, the problems inherent in the law will become more manifest.

We look forward to continuing to work with you over the coming months and years to see that ObamaCare is repealed and to see that we are victorious in the fight for real health care freedom.

Heather touches on one of the key points about ObamaCare: it isn’t the real health care reform we needed. Indeed, ObamaCare will be hazardous to your health and also hazardous to our traditional American liberty.

I don’t think the loss was the result of mistakes, at least not big mistakes, on the part of Governor Romney. Sure, he could have hit harder on Benghazi, fought more indignantly against the hideous personal slurs aimed at him, or spoken more about ideas. But none of this is likely to have made that great a difference.

What those of us who believe in liberty and the free market must confront is the reality of a new kind of electorate—and I am not talking about skin color, which, after all, is only skin deep.

We face an electorate that believes in government and (thanks to a lousy education system) lacks appreciation for the singular achievement of a band of classically-educated gentlemen who risked everything to create this republic. These voters are likely to have been encouraged to think of these men as flawed (as they most assuredly were) but to know nothing about the miracle that they brought forth.

As the dust begins to settle, there is a lot of talk about Senator Marco Rubio as the hope of the future. If you’ve ever seen him deliver a brilliant speech, without notes, you know he’s an impressive man. But please don’t make the mistake of thinking that Republicans should flock to him because of the color of his skin or his last name. Our job is not to pander based on ethnic origins. Yeah, I could name a political party that does that quite successfully. But our hope is to persuade the populace that it is better to build one's own life than to depend on the government (which, after all, is only remitting to us from the bounty we have sent it).

Many people come to this country seeing America as the shining city upon the hill. They want to work. We have to speak to them, not in code, but blatantly, loudly, no if ands or buts, confrontationally challenging the other side’s horrible ideas. We must be able to talk to the cab driver, the manicurist, and the waiter about what the government is doing to them. ObamaCare, as its horrors unfold, will be our ally. Of course, I still feel quite sick this morning.