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President Barack Obama WINS ReElection over Mitt Romney

Barack Obama Wins Re-election With Romney Defeated in Key States President Barack Obama is embraced by a volunteer as he visits a campaign office on Nov. 6, 2012 in Chicago. Barack Obama, the post-partisan candidate of hope who became the first black U.S. president, won re-election today by overcoming four years of economic discontent with a mix of political populism and electoral math. Obama defeated Republican Mitt Romney, according to television network projections that show the president winning the electoral votes needed for re-election. Beginning more than a year ago, Obama and his advisers cast the president as a champion of middle-class opportunity pitted against an opposition party more determined to protect preferences for the wealthy. "After all that we've been through together, we can't give up now," Obama told a crowd of 18,000 in Madison, Wisconsin, a day ahead of the election as he made his final campaign swing of the year. Throughout a volatile Republican nominating contest, Obama's political team never wavered from the view that its eventual opponent would be Romney, a former private equity executive whom they would portray as an out-of-touch embodiment of moneyed privilege and heartless capitalism. Identifying Romney Even before the Republican primary contest ended, as the public was still forming impressions of Romney, Obama and his allies began a campaign to define their opponent. By summer, they inundated battleground states with commercials featuring layoffs at companies purchased by Romney's former firm, Bain Capital LLC, as well as his Swiss banks accounts and tax returns showing how he took advantage of breaks not available to most middle-income taxpayers. Romney didn't counter with his own aggressive effort to establish an identity with voters as he focused his campaign on turning the election into a referendum on persistent high joblessness. The unemployment rate under Obama exceeded 8 percent for 43 months, the longest period of such high joblessness since the start of monthly records in 1948. The negative tone of the campaign on both sides was reflected in their advertising. Between April, when Romney clinched his primary victory, and Oct. 28, nearly nine in 10 of all campaign ads -- 87 percent -- were negative, according to New York based Kantar Media's CMAG. Changing Electorate The incumbent started the campaign with an advantage on the electoral map. The ethnic composition of eligible voters shifted in favor of Obama in many critical states since his first election in 2008. The portion of adult citizens who are members of racial or ethnic minority groups grew by 4 percentage points in Nevada, by 3 percentage points in Virginia, by 2 percentage points in Florida and by 1 percentage point in Ohio and Iowa between 2008 and 2011, according to an analysis of Census data by William Frey, a demographer at the Brookings Institution in Washington. That put states with more electoral votes in the safely Democratic column than in the safely Republican one, and left Romney with fewer potential paths to the 270 electoral votes needed to win election. Obama's team took advantage by organizing to motivate supporters in the remaining states considered electoral battlegrounds. In some cases, Obama's campaign never disbanded its 2008 efforts and early in the 2012 contest it built more field offices and hired professional staff. Voter Registration By Election Day, the Obama team claimed to have registered 1.8 million new voters in the battleground states, nearly double the number of new voters the campaign registered four years earlier. By last weekend, 28 percent of those new voters had cast ballots through early voting, the campaign said. "Don't wait" to vote, Obama urged a mostly black crowd of 13,500 voters packed into Cincinnati's Fifth Third Arena Nov. 4. "Who do you trust?" the president asked the crowd, which shouted back "You!" Saying he knows what "real change" is, Obama added: "I delivered it; I've got the scars to prove it." The geography of the economic recovery also favored the president in the eight swing states that received the most attention from the two campaigns: Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Ohio, Nevada, New Hampshire, Virginia and Wisconsin. In five of those states, joblessness was lower than the national average by September, the most recent month for which state-level unemployment data is available. Polls have begun to open across America after two tiny villages in northern New Hampshire kicked off the 2012 election by casting the first Election Day votes early Tuesday. President Obama and Republican Mitt Romney each won five votes in the small town of Dixville Notch, which was the first to announce its results after polls opened and closed within 43 seconds.

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