October 24th, 2012
05:07 PM ET
2 years 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. markiejoe

    No state matters for Romney except Ohio. If he doesn't win Ohio, he can't win the election. And right now Romney is behind by a considerable margin in Ohio. His electoral college goose would appear to be cooked.

    October 24, 2012 11:23 pm at 11:23 pm |
  2. Victor

    Romney is so scary as a possible commander and chief.
    Good by middle class, Medicare, social security and hello ultra right wing Supreme Court

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

    I live in north carolina I hope we go back to being a red state . my brother lives in massachusettes he said before Romney they were in debt and when he left they were in a surplus. I'm sure Obama's a nice fellow,but I want someone in the white house who has experience running and delegating balancing a buget . I'm going with M R Ryan not B O Joe

    October 24, 2012 11:27 pm at 11:27 pm |
  4. Obama Mama

    Vote North Carolina dems, Vote.

    October 24, 2012 11:29 pm at 11:29 pm |
  5. Matk

    The South is less racial than the North. Times have changed.

    October 24, 2012 11:31 pm at 11:31 pm |
  6. PartOf

    Did you ever notice how the polls now run the news? Who is winning and who is losing and to the American viewers we are deprived of substance, real conversation on climate change,immigration, the long overdue drug reform bill, health care with lowering costs, fiscal cliff, taxes, social security. Our nation-has dumb down for the low-information voter and CNN my app just loaded 10 Republican stories. Romney momentum has slowed, and you are backing the Karl Rove tactics of 2000 to give a false impression, BIG CHANGE IN NC, hasn't this been trending Romney. How about the five states Obama carries...for cable television it is about money and ratings, so substance continues to evade CNN. Dark Money buys television and the viewers everywhere lose, and in the end so will CNN.

    October 24, 2012 11:32 pm at 11:32 pm |
  7. NameMarieCA

    This might change now that the Mourdock story is getting traction. Besides, the President still had other swing states to rely on.

    October 24, 2012 11:48 pm at 11:48 pm |
  8. Sirned

    Hmmmm...You better wait until the next poll when Richard Mourdocks comments get factored in...

    October 24, 2012 11:48 pm at 11:48 pm |
  9. theINDEPENDENTone

    The ROMNEY / Ryan Ticket is a unifying force for our country. Its what the country needs to end the polarization and stagnation seen under OBAMA. Stagnation with a down in the dumps economy is not what any of us needs.

    Nice to see the country unified again.

    October 24, 2012 11:49 pm at 11:49 pm |
  10. Blue state

    Love the red states for sending in so few dollars and getting back so much from the fed. And u hate these guys, right? And in the blue states we are essentially subsidizing your non-productive a**es. So, you hate the guy and the values of the folks who are paying your way through yor non-productive lives. Cheers when you elect a guy who despises u; Mitt. And hates for supporting you. However, give u reds credit for supporting a guy who thinks if your brother rapes you, by golly, that there baby is God's gift just for u! Thank you God!

    Gotta love this country; right?

    October 24, 2012 11:50 pm at 11:50 pm |
  11. Alex T

    Could an Obama supporter help me understand why they plan to vote for him? I understand that Bush was not a democrat favorite. Is it simply that you think Romney will be round 2 of George W?

    October 24, 2012 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm |
  12. Bib Boogg

    slip sliding awayyyyyyy! Actually, NC has been red for weeks now. Next: Virginia, Ohio, Florida, Nevada, Colorado, New Hampshire etc. I guess we're all racist! Such a week argument!

    October 24, 2012 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  13. Black Man in Charlotte

    Romney/Ryan 2012.

    We need more conservatives down here in North Carolina to rid us of this Liberal Infestation. Please take Anthony Foxx back up North. The Liberals are trying ruin us in D.C. and NC. Please make it stop!!!!

    October 25, 2012 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  14. bob

    FL, VA, SC, NC, CO now either lean Romney or safe Romney. OH, MI, WI will go lean Romney by Sunday. Iowa and PA will go toss up by Sunday and Lean Romney by Nov 2nd. Romney wins in a land slide.

    October 25, 2012 12:02 am at 12:02 am |
  15. Big_D

    N.C. Want's the party of forced parenthood after rape. It is the N.C way.

    October 25, 2012 12:05 am at 12:05 am |
  16. Alex T

    Could an Obama supporter help me understand why you plan on voting for him?

    October 25, 2012 12:05 am at 12:05 am |
  17. Big_D

    N.C. Was out until they threw in the rape part.

    October 25, 2012 12:06 am at 12:06 am |
  18. Rick

    I swear each day things look better and better for Romney and more and more bleak for Obama.

    Hello, President Romney!!!

    October 25, 2012 12:07 am at 12:07 am |
  19. Chris

    Mark, if you are ashamed of America, then we are all ashamed of you. It doesn't matter whether you are Democrat, Republican, Libertarian, Socialist, Green Party, etc...We are all America. If you are so ashamed of America, then why don't you just leave it?..I mean, what is your reason for staying around here if you are so ashamed of it?...I am proud of my country, and I am proud that we have the freedom to choose from whatever political party we ant to (even though Rep & Dem get most the publicity)...I am very proud of us all, no matter which party we vote for!!!!!!!

    October 25, 2012 12:10 am at 12:10 am |
  20. Aaron the Ogre

    Race is an issue in the South in only a general sense. For many people who live in the south race and religion is not important. Many people only vote according to issues and records, not the demographic back-grounds of the candidates.

    October 25, 2012 12:11 am at 12:11 am |
  21. janice

    I think that romey needs to sit down some where and let our present do what he has to do

    October 25, 2012 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
  22. Casey

    I live in North Carolina and would like to still have my government grants, thank you. And I am about to vote Obama tomorrow. All these hateful comments just shows how insane people are nowadays. The no one is right but me mentality is sinking us to the ground.

    October 25, 2012 12:21 am at 12:21 am |
  23. Patchygroundfog

    I believe North Carolina is too smart to believe Mitt Romney's lies, lift her skirt and be taken by a guy who'll say anything to let him come inside. You know he'll be gone tomorrow without a word of comfort. North Carolina, have some self-respect. He's dogging you ... and deep down, you know it ...

    October 25, 2012 12:35 am at 12:35 am |
  24. Edilberto

    This is a feint on both sides. Romney moved one, only one staffer out of the state. They wanted to create the narrative in the media that Romney is confident he'll win North Carolina in order to demoralize their opponents. If he really believed he had it wrapped up, he'd pull out, and you'd stop seeing ads. Hasn't happened.

    The Dems aren't going to say that they've given up either because they're reasonably close, so if anything (Mourdock?) happens between now and the election, they're still in striking distance. They also want to force Romney to keep expending resources in the state, even if they know they can't win it. This is a complete non-story.

    October 25, 2012 12:41 am at 12:41 am |
  25. lsn2me

    all i ask is that the red states keep fracking and fracking waste water in their own states. smoke your cigars and drive your fast cars while you can and then deal with the envrironmental disasters in your own back yards. don't complain about it.

    October 25, 2012 12:42 am at 12:42 am |
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