Polls close in Ohio, North Carolina

November 5th, 2008 - 8:18 am ICT by IANS  

Barack ObamaWashington, Nov 5 (DPA) Voting concluded Tuesday in Ohio and North Carolina, two states heavily contested by Democrat Barack Obama and Republican John McCain that could play a key role in the outcome of the presidential election.Ohio and North Carolina are traditionally Republican ground, but the slumping economy has helped boost Obama into a dead heat with McCain, and the Democrat was expected to benefit from a high turnout by African American voters in North Carolina.

The results were to begin trickling in shorly after the polls closed, which took place at 0030 GMT.

Polls had earlier closed in other battleground states like Virginia and Indiana, in most of Florida, as well as in Georgia, South Carolina, Vermont and Kentucky.

Major US networks projected that McCain would win Kentucky’s eight electoral votes, while Obama would win Vermont’s three electoral votes. Both states were expected to be solidly in the candidates’ corners. Fox News projected that McCain would win West Virginia, which holds five electoral votes.

Under the complicated Electoral College state-by-state system, a candidate needs to win 270 electoral votes to win the presidency.

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