Obama 'four more years' tweet skyrockets to No. 1 retweet

Moments after winning re-election, the president tweets a picture of himself hugging the first lady, quickly eclipsing a Justin Bieber tweet for retweet champion. Plus: The most-liked Facebook photo of all time.

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Steven Musil
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A tweet sent this evening by President Obama minutes after winning re-election has quickly become the most retweeted message ever.

Obama's official Twitter account -- which now has more than 22 million followers -- posted a photo of the President hugging First Lady Michelle Obama, with the message "Four more years."

The tweet quickly logged more than 350,000 retweets and 100,000 votes as favorite tweets, easily surpassing a Justin Bieber tweet grieving the passing of Avalanna Routh, a young fan who died of brain cancer in September, which held the title with a little more than 223,000 retweets. Bieber captured the title two days after Green Bay Packers lineman T.J. Lang tweeted his frustration with replacement referees during an NFL game.

About 32 million tweets referencing the U.S. presidential election were sent today, with more than 23 million sent after the first polls closed this afternoon. Activity peaked at 8:19 p.m. PT when the major TV networks declared Obama the president, generating 327,452 tweets per minute, Twitter said. That surpassed the 85,273 tweets per minute that accompanied the announcement that Iowa's electoral votes had gone to Obama just seven minutes earlier.

The election was billed as the nation's first "social election," with 22 percent of voters telling their friends and followers on social networking sites such as Facebook or Twitter how they voted for various candidates and ballot measures, according to a Pew Research report released today. The need to share extended to the sacrosanct privacy of the ballot booth, with Instagram users sharing a barrage of images of their ballots and "I voted" stickers.

Update November 7 at 5:42 a.m. PT: And that image of Barack and Michelle Obama now has another claim to fame: It quickly became "the most-liked Facebook photo of all time," on the strength of more than 2.1 million likes, according to the globe-spanning social network. [Via The Atlantic.]