Obama Wins Big In Prince Edward

Published 4:50 pm Thursday, November 8, 2012

FARMVILLE – Four years ago, Barack Obama became the first African-American elected President of the United States.

On Tuesday, he became the first two-term African-American president.

Virginia's electoral votes helped carry President Obama back into the White House, with the incumbent Democrat winning convincingly in Prince Edward County.

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President Obama won 55.55 percent of the vote in Prince Edward, to 42.78 percent for Republican Mitt Romney, topping his margin of victory in 2008 over John McCain.

Obama defeated McCain by slightly more than 900 votes in Prince Edward four years ago and collected 54 percent of the vote. He defeated Romney by 1,180 votes Tuesday night.

To put Obama's electoral strength into greater perspective, eight years ago, John Kerry outpolled George W. Bush in Prince Edward, but by less than 70 votes, over 1,100 fewer votes than the president's victory margin Tuesday night.

Voter turnout in Prince Edward was 67.7 percent of the county's registered voters, reports voter registrar Dale Bolt, who said it was “about where I expected it to be. Four years ago it was 70.58.” Bolt said that, based on absentee voting this fall, he expected 67 to 68 percent turnout among registered voters. “So I was pretty close.”

The President also won in Buckingham County, collecting 50.32 percent of the vote to 47.93 percent for Romney.

Turnout in Buckingham was 81 percent of active voters, which was 75 percent of registered voters, according to voter registrar Margaret Thomas.

Cumberland finished in Romney's column of Virginia localities, with the GOP challenger winning 50.28 percent of the vote and President Obama picking up 47.98 percent.

Marlene Watson, voter registrar in Cumberland, was called for a report on the county's turnout on Tuesday. Election workers were in the room with her and answered with a chorus of “heavy.”

The statewide totals saw President Obama win Virginia by 50.57 percent to 47.85 percent for Romney.

Former Fifth District Congressman Virgil Goode, running as the Constitution Party's candidate, won 52 votes in Prince Edward, 73 votes in Buckingham, and 40 votes in Cumberland, or 0.56 percent, 0.98 percent, and 0.79 percent respectively.

Nationally, Goode collected 108,195 votes, or 0.09 percent of the vote, finishing fifth, ahead of comedian Rosanne Barr.

Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson beat Goode by five votes in Prince Edward, lost by 14 votes in Cumberland and 35 votes in Buckingham. The Green Party's Jill Stein finished last in each county.

Statewide, Johnson's 30,307 more than doubled Goode's 13,623, with Green winning 8,444 in Virginia.

The incumbent president was, of course, the night's big winner.

Before going on stage Tuesday night following Romney's concession speech, President Obama emailed supporters, telling them his victory “wasn't fate, and it wasn't an accident. You made this happen…I will spend the rest of my presidency honoring your support, and doing what I can to finish what we started…Today is the clearest proof yet that, against the odds, ordinary Americans can overcome powerful interests.”

In his concession speech, Romney told supporters, “like so many of you, Paul (running mate Paul Ryan) and I have left everything on the field. We have given our all to this campaign.”

And Romney said he will “pray that the president will be successful guiding our nation.”