Regardless of how Obama performs over the next 4 years, there has been a dramatic change in American politics, and it is very well expressed by Juan WIlliams in this article :
The idea of black politics now tilts away from leadership based on voicing grievance, and identity politics based on victimization and anger. In its place is an era in which it is assumed that talented, tough people of any background will find a way to their rightful seat of power in mainstream political life.
The Jesse Jacksons, Al Sharptons and Rev. Jeremiah Wrights remain. But their influence and power fade to a form of nostalgia in a world of larger political agendas, such as a common American vision of setting the nation on a steady economic course and dealing with terrorists.