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Americas

Obama and Romney in last dash for swing states

©

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2012-11-06

US President Barack Obama holds the slimmest of leads as the USA counts down to Tuesday’s elections. Both candidates said they are confident of victory, but the result will depend on a few crucial swing states.

As the US counts down to Tuesday’s elections, incumbent President Barack Obama and his Republican opponent Mitt Romney have embarked on their sprint to the finish, wooing voters in a handful of crucial swing states.

Polls show the candidates in a tight battle in which Obama holds a slight edge.

Their last-minute focus is to motivate their supporters in key swing states to go to the polls at the end of a campaign that has been marked by bitter personal attacks and saturation advertising in key states.

“It's up to you. You have the power," Obama told a crowd of some 14,000 people thronging the streets of Concord, New Hampshire, where polls have Obama leading by an average of two points. "You will be shaping the decisions for this country for decades to come, right now, in the next two days."

In Iowa, where Obama also has a slim poll lead, Romney told more than 4,000 people in Des Moines to make sure they made it to the polls on Tuesday and to convince independants to ditch Obama. "Let's make sure that we get everyone to the polls," he said.

Ohio, the crucial state

While the two candidates were effectively neck-and-neck in Florida, opinion polls show Obama holding a slight lead in Ohio, Wisconsin, Iowa and Nevada -- states that would land the Democrat candidate the 270 electoral college votes he needs to secure victory.

In Ohio, which represents a crucial 18 electoral votes, polls give Obama a four-point lead over Romney.

Both candidates visited the state on Sunday; despite the incumbent’s lead there, Republicans said they were still optimistic of a Romney win.

"What we're seeing consistently ... is that there is a general underperforming in places where President Obama needs to do well and there's an over-performing in places where Governor Romney does well," Romney's political director Rich Beeson told "Fox News Sunday".

Meanwhile, Obama's campaign adviser David Axelrod said Obama's early leads in states like Nevada, Iowa and the Ohio would hold up on election day, even if the incumbent does not repeat his 7-point landslide victory over opponent John McCain in the 2008 vote.

"Yes, they are going to do a little better than McCain did, and we may not do as well as we did in 2008, but we're doing plenty well -- and well enough to win this race," Axelrod told “Fox News Sunday”.

As the clock ticked down to Tuesday's vote, Romney's efforts included a surprise foray into Pennsylvania, a state that has voted Democrat in every election since 1988 and that Republican strategists now say is breaking his way.

"We're taking back the White House because we're going to win Pennsylvania," Romney told a crowd of up to 30,000 gathered on a farm in icy weather.

Obama advisers, however, dismissed the trip as a sign of desperation, taken less than 48 hours from election day as Romney saw his hopes slipping away in Ohio.
 

Date created : 2012-11-05

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