Obama asks McCain for help leading country

CHICAGO (AP) -- Barack Obama has accepted John McCain's concession and has asked his Republican rival for help in leading the country.

Obama spokesman Robert Gibbs said McCain called Obama at 11 p.m. EST, moments after The Associated Press and television networks declared the Illinois senator the next president.

Gibbs said Obama thanked McCain for his graciousness and said he had waged a tough race. He also said the Arizona senator was consistently someone who has showed class and honor during this campaign as he has during his entire life in public service.

Gibbs quoted Obama as saying, "I need your help, you're a leader on so many important issues."

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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