Bush claims 'historic victory'

President Bush is claiming a "historic victory" over his challenger, Massachusetts Senator John Kerry.

"America has spoken," the President said in a speech Wednesday afternoon at the Reagan Trade Center in Washington, D.C.

He added that he's "humbled" by the trust and confidence of Americans. He said he has a duty to serve all Americans, and that he'll do his best to fulfill that duty every day.

Bush told the cheering crowd that John Kerry had called with congratulations. He said it was a "really good phone call." He said Kerry was "very gracious."

Kerry waged a "spirited campaign," according to the President, who also said that Kerry and his supporters "can be proud."

Bush vowed that in a second term, he will help what he called the "emerging democracies of Iraq and Afghanistan." He said he'll see that they become stronger and defend their freedom, so that U.S. servicemen and women can "come home with the honor they have earned."

Bush also vowed to reform what he called an "outdated tax code" and to "strengthen Social Security for the next generation."

He said he'd make the nation's public schools "all they can be," and he promised to "uphold the deepest values of family and faith."

Concluding his acceptance speech, Bush said he sees a "great day coming" for the country, and that he's "eager for the work ahead."

Bush described his second term as a "new opportunity to reach out to the whole nation." He said he presides over "one country" with "one constitution" and with "one future that binds us."

The campaign has ended, says Bush, but the nation will go forward with confidence and faith.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.