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Numbers slip, but president holds on to Virginia

BY BILL FREEHLING

Barack Obama lost ground in Virginia compared with his 2008 election, but it still appeared to be enough to propel the president to another victory in the Old Dominion on Tuesday.

In 2008, Obama received 52.6 percent of the vote in Virginia. As of press time Tuesday, unofficial returns showed that with 2,568 of the state’s 2,588 precincts counted, the incumbent had received 50.1 percent to Republican candidate Mitt Romney’s 48.2 percent.

On a percentage basis, Obama lost ground in a large majority of Virginia localities compared with his 2008 performance.

But as in 2008, Obama fared best in some of Virginia’s most populous localities, including Arlington, Fairfax, Henrico and Prince William counties as well as the cities of Alexandria, Hampton, Newport News and Richmond. Obama received more than three-quarters of the vote in Charlottesville and Richmond, 71 percent in Alexandria, 67 percent in Arlington and almost 59 percent in Fairfax. He took 51 percent of the vote in Loudoun County.

As in 2008, Romney won more localities than Obama, but many of them were smaller counties with few voters.

Romney took seven of the 10 Fredericksburg-area localities.

Romney took Stafford with about 54 percent of the vote and had a clear lead in Spotsylvania and King George counties as of press time. Romney also won Culpeper, Orange and Louisa counties easily.

In the city of Fredericksburg, Obama received 62 percent of the vote. He had 53 percent of the vote in Caroline County.

One local race was perhaps the closest in the state. Obama defeated Romney by a mere 39 votes in Westmoreland County.

Bill Freehling: 540/374-5424

bfreehling@freelancestar.com

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