October 24th, 2012
05:07 PM ET
1 year ago

CNN shifts North Carolina to 'lean Romney'

(CNN) - Color North Carolina light red.

CNN is moving its classification of the swing state from true "toss up" to "lean Romney."

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Four years ago then Sen. Barack Obama became the first Democrat since 1976 to carry North Carolina in a presidential election. And this summer the Democrats held their nominating convention in Charlotte.

While the Obama campaign continues to run ads in North Carolina, spending just over $1.2 million to run spots over the past week, according to Campaign Media Analysis Group, which tracks ad spending for CNN, the president hasn't made a campaign stop in the state since his nomination at the Democratic convention in early September.

Last week, in a clear sign it's confident about turning the state from blue to red, Republican nominee Mitt Romney's campaign moved its North Carolina spokesman out of the state and planned to shift more staffers to other states.

This week the Obama campaign denied that they were giving up on North Carolina, saying they have a "credible pathway to 50%" in the state. But some campaign officials privately acknowledge that the state, which Obama can afford to lose, is moving out of reach.

With the shift of North Carolina, CNN now estimates that Romney is leading in states with 206 electoral votes. The shift does not affect CNN's estimate that Obama is leading in states with 237 electoral votes. Two-hundred and seventy electoral votes are needed to win the White House.

CNN is also shifting Indiana and Missouri, two states that are currently "lean Romney," to "safe Romney." Obama carried Indiana four years ago, becoming the first Democrat since 1964 to win the state in a presidential election. And he narrowly lost Missouri to Sen. John McCain, the 2008 GOP nominee.

But this cycle, the Obama campaign has not seriously contested either state.

The moving of Indiana and Missouri does not affect the electoral count.

– CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report

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Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • North Carolina
soundoff (306 Responses)
  1. tiara131

    NC IS NOT A ROMNEY STATE BY ALL!!!!!! How was this determined??? Most of the people I've talked to believe Mitt Romney doesn't know what he stands for from one minute to the next. I'm amazed at how many people in this country actually trust Mitt Romney. You may not like Obama, but Mitt Romney will say or do anything that he thinks you want to hear for that moment.

    October 24, 2012 10:36 pm at 10:36 pm |
  2. Dr. Tom Potts

    A little early to call NC red. I am greeting a large number of Democratic voters at the polls who are determined to defeat Romney. It's not over till it's over.

    October 24, 2012 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  3. calvin

    out of the mouths of the kool aid drinkers comes racial,gop for the rich, romney hates women,blame it on bush. blame it on the tea party. blame it on congress ect. they never say we may of did it wrong. yet the country keeps going down hill at a fast pace. we are hated by the muslim so they keep give them money when we are attacked we do nothing for weeks and we keep hearing the press back up obama so i guess the rest of us people are stupid to listen to them.

    October 24, 2012 10:38 pm at 10:38 pm |
  4. Jharris

    Romney is polling very strong in the South which is why he is 50-52 percent in Gallup. In about 2 election cycles 2020, Georgia, North Carolina, Texas, and Arizona will become competitive.

    October 24, 2012 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm |
  5. Name

    Obama has access to the greatest minds in the world. How can anyone think Romney has some secret that will save the economy? This is about who these men represent. Both are good men. Romney is too out of touch with the middle class. Trickle down is bs.

    October 24, 2012 10:43 pm at 10:43 pm |
  6. Larry Fuller

    While I could liive with a Romney presidency, I strongly believe that President Obama deserves four more years for pulling this nation from the brink of a great depression. As a North Carolinian, I can only hope that enough folks share this view to give the precious electoral votes of this great state to President Obama.

    October 24, 2012 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  7. NamCheryle

    Romney has love for those who can not help themselves, the poor, women, elderly, small companies and America.

    October 24, 2012 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  8. marg

    merilltech you could not have said it any better. But my choice will be Mr Romney.

    October 24, 2012 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  9. Louise

    women vote for Obama to live the way we shouldwithout others.religious beliefs being enforced on us

    October 24, 2012 10:58 pm at 10:58 pm |
  10. DW

    When did CNN become so blatantly pro-Romney? Look at the "Election" section on any given day and the first 4-5 headlines will be Romney-love. What gives? Did Sheldon Adelson buy this website or what?

    October 24, 2012 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
  11. bengalskuta82

    Looks like we'll have a new Prez..Loving it..Obama needs to go

    October 24, 2012 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
  12. lmason

    I don't understand why CNN is doing that, Democrats are leading the early vote 2 to 1 in North Carolina, and they have a better grow gain....I think CNN is being paid by Romney supporters because there ratings are so low.

    October 24, 2012 11:05 pm at 11:05 pm |
  13. genie_gor

    Well face it, you will either get "more of the same" with Barack Obama or something completely random with Romney who will likely change his position once he is elected to the office. People in North Carolina got tired of this campaign and feel like they should gamble a little to unwind. It's surprising that it wasn't Nevada :)

    October 24, 2012 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  14. David, North Texas

    Its hard to believe that the Candidate Obama can come out with a new Plan for America in the last two weeks of this campaign that even his Cabinet or Budget Office did not generate or embellish. It appears to be generated by his campaign committee. Looks like Axelrod is running the country from Chicago. Congress and the Administration hasn't past a budget in years. Its also not surprising that Liberals are so gullible in believing any of the items mentioned can be accomplished in the next administration since Obama has done everything to criticize Congress from all angles since he has lack the leadership to bring the two chambers together over the last three and half years or should I say the first 18 months; since April 2011 he has been running for re-election and has not been very Presidential. Come on people get Smart!

    October 24, 2012 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
  15. Sf

    All of these seing states have independent idiots that just dont get it! Fine, let them vote for romney, hope he wins...lets see where these idiots stand a year from now!

    Til then..im still voting for Obama

    October 24, 2012 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
  16. avis

    I am registered in NC and I am going to vote for Obama.

    October 24, 2012 11:08 pm at 11:08 pm |
  17. Brian

    And yeah, its pretty sad that NC is going for Romney...it has pretty nice parts.

    October 24, 2012 11:09 pm at 11:09 pm |
  18. MrSummers

    did hell freeze over yet? no? guess I still don't have to vote for ANY republican again ever.

    October 24, 2012 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  19. Jeff from Bronxville

    OK, NC leans towards Rmoney-that's a reasonable conclusion from the polls at hand. However, by the same logic CNN should, given the polls of the past week, show Ohio, Nevada, New Hampshire, Iowa and Wisconsin leaning towards Obama. Florida, Virginia and Colorado remain pure toss-ups. CNN is playing the 'horserace game' and hoping to divert the public from Romney's stalled 'momentum'. The past three weeks are as good as it's going to get for him. Unless Obama's Get Out the Vote effort is a bust, Obama's headed for somewhere between 285 – 300 EVs. So go ahead and gin-up more stories about Romney momentum and un-substantiated claims that 'undecideds are breaking his way'-but none of that can negate the obvious electoral math that points to a second term for the President.

    October 24, 2012 11:14 pm at 11:14 pm |
  20. gremlinus

    As a democrat in NC, all of you can take off. You know why it's so hard to effect any change in the South? Because people who live in other states sit around and talk about how much more enlightened and educated and tolerant they are. While they sit there and generalize about a region they seem to know nothing about. Hypocrite, heal thyself.

    October 24, 2012 11:15 pm at 11:15 pm |
  21. watson

    CNN is about a week late on this. Both NC and Virginia will go Romney.

    October 24, 2012 11:17 pm at 11:17 pm |
  22. FormerTeaPartyPerson

    I agree with "merrilltech" that it really doesn't matter who is President. If Romney wins, I predict that within hours the democratic leadership will announce behind closed doors, that they will do everything in their power to insure that Mitt Romney will be a one-term-president! If the Dems keep control of the Senate, they will hold up every piece of legislation, even legislation they previously approved, in order to keep Romney from being re-elected. Sound familiar?

    October 24, 2012 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  23. Chris

    As someone from North Carolina, they are correct. Though it does make me sad.

    October 24, 2012 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  24. Ryche

    Hahahahahahahahahahahhahahahahahahaha. Oh I can't wait to laugh at you libs on nov 7th

    October 24, 2012 11:22 pm at 11:22 pm |
  25. Jason

    well boys and girls we got two weeks let do we stay with president 44 or go forward with president 45

    October 24, 2012 11:22 pm at 11:22 pm |
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