Polls stay open late with voters still in line

November 6, 2012

The Obama campaign is urging tired voters to "#stayinline" as the polls close, especially in swing states like Florida and Iowa where voting lines are long and races tight.

In Virginia, Pete Synder, a technology entrepreneur who is the chairman of the Republicans' coordinated campaign in Virginia, confirmed after 9 p.m. that Prince William County, Virginia Beach, Chesapeake and a few other polls could be open "for hours."

Both President Obama and his campaign have sent tweets reminding voters they can still cast ballots as election hours wind down; as long as they are in line when the closing time arrives, the polls will stay open to let them vote.

The campaign targeted voters in Florida, Wisconsin, Minnesota, New Mexico and Colorado, all swing states. According to the analytics site Topsy, use of the hashtag #StayInLine exploded between 6:35 and 7:35 Eastern time, when polls started closing. Around 8:30 p.m., the Obama campaign also bought a promoted #StayInLine tweet, pushing it to the top of @BarackObama's feed.

Voter turnout in states like Wisconsin and Colorado could prove crucial to the Obama campaign. They, along with Florida, Virginia and New Hampshire, are the five closest swing states in this election; a Real Clear Politics poll found voters split evenly, 47.8 percent for Obama and 47.8 percent for Romney. Watch the video below for Chris Cillizza's breakdown of must-win states for Romney.

Caitlin Dewey runs The Intersect blog, writing about digital and Internet culture. Before joining the Post, she was an associate online editor at Kiplinger’s Personal Finance.
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