Header Graphic for Democracy in Action P2012: Race for the White House

Successor to the GW sites:  P2008  |  P2004  |   P2000.  Also see:  P2016.

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  •  What's Hot  

     When? The Historical Moment--Factors That Shaped Campaign 2012
  •  Where? Candidates Focused on a Few Battleground States
  •  Who? Campaign Staffs Made it Happen
  •  How? Communicating the Message
  •  Why? Many Big Challenges Facing Our Country
  •  What? Election Day Finds There is Still Room for Improvement
  •  Republican Primary Campaign 

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The flat economy posed a major challenge to President Barack Obama as he sought a second term. Republicans hoped to make Obama a "one-term president," and to challenge him GOP primary voters settled on former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. The general election appeared close, but incumbency advantage and Obama's unprecedented, sophisticated campaign, combined with unforced errors by Romney, and changing demographics carried the day for the President. Obama won by a margin of 332 to 206 electoral votes, defeating Romney by 51.0% to 47.2% of the 129.1 million votes cast in the presidential race. The Center for Responsive Politics estimated spending on the long presidential campaign totaled $2.6 billion, including about $1 billion by each of the campaign/party committees and $528 million by outside organizations that report to the FEC. [FEC Commissioner Ellen Weintraub estimated overall spending on races in the 2012 election at $7 billion]. As Republicans maintained control in the House, and Democrats in the Senate, the net outcome was seen as a status quo election.  

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Mission: To provide a framework for citizens to follow the presidential campaign, to point people to the best available resources and information on the campaign, and to present original reporting and photography on the campaign.