Barack Obama 2012 Presidential election campaign seems to be going in the right direction. As President Barack Obama begins his re-election campaign a big question started doing the rounds: whether he would be able to hold on to the Republican bastion in which he made a big dent in the 2008 presidential election.
Republican Mitt Romney is leaving no stone unturned to win back those lost grounds, especially in the traditional Bible belt, always considered as the conservative citadel.
While results may go on the expected line in most of the places the tussle is going to be sharp in a dozen or so States in the traditional Republican stronghold where Obama had made a big dent in 2008. Both the candidates would be spending their fortunes in these very battlegrounds.
Florida, which in 2000 election provided a photo-finish victory to George Bush is once again going to hog the limelight. The battle is likely to be interesting in Upper Midwest, especially Ohio. Both these states were won by Democrat last time. But big attention is being paid to the Mid-Atlantic and Southwest.
With the arrival of young techies, professionals and minorities––both voted for Obama last time––states like North Carolina and Virginia are witnessing demographic changes. It may have its impact on the result. It is in these two places that Obama won. No Democrat had won before in the last one generation. Whether he wins back, loses or further consolidates is the question?
Notwithstanding all out efforts to make the election a national referendum, local trends and factors may play an important role in deciding the fortune.
Experts predict that Obama may win 14 states, mainly in the East and West Coasts, and the District of Columbia, if the election is held now. The total electoral vote would be around 186.
In contrast Romney, a former Massachusetts governor, may prevail in 20 states, primarily in the South and West, worth 156.
So to reach the magic figure of 270 the battle would narrow down in the rest of the 16 states where Obama won in 2008 defeating Senator John McCain (Arizona). Obama captured nine states that George Bush had won in 2004.
The Democrat won in Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, New Mexico and Nevada. But today all of them are plagued with problems of unemployment and high prices.
In Florida, where unemployment tops nine percent, tourism is slow to recover, gas prices are high and trouble persists in the housing market, Obama and his team is working aggressively. His visit to the state on April 20 will be 16th since taking office, more than almost any other swing state.
If Romney wins the 29 electoral votes of Florida, it would block Obama’s clearest path to 270, claimed Rick Wiley, political director for the Republican National Committee. So once again, as in 2000 the battle boils down to this state.
If in Ohio one is looking at the general election as a referendum on the economy Republicans hopes to snatch back North Carolina and Virginia––once again because of unemployment, price rise, recession and other related factors.
Hispanic voters last time helped Obama win in Colorado, Nevada and New Mexico. So when he was in Columbia last weekend to attend the Summit of Organiztion of American States he had Spanish-speaking voters at home in mind.
Romney on his part accused Democrat as soft on illegal immigration, and has said he would veto legislation that would allow certain illegal residents to become US citizens.
Obama wants to further consolidate Iowa. Vice President Joe Biden has campaigned twice this year.