After months as epicenter of relentless campaigning, Ohio finds relief in election

By Michael Finnegan Published: November 7, 2012
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Secure America Now, a group led by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and other prominent conservatives, showed Obama on what was labeled as “Arab TV,” with Arabic writing on screen, criticizing him on foreign policy. “Time to get rid of this sorry president,” an announcer said.

Another group, Special Ops Opsec Education Fund, ran a spot accusing Obama of lying about the deadly attack on a U.S. diplomatic post in Libya and of leaking highly classified secrets, “endangering real heroes and families.”

The effect was diluted, however, by the scores of other withering ads against Obama over the last six months. They often ran back to back with spots bashing Romney with no less fervor.

“We either had to listen to a guy we like a lot tell lies, or hear a guy we can't stand tell lies,” said Daniel Ave, 52, after voting Tuesday morning at North United Methodist Church in Columbus.

Ave, who works at the YMCA, said that the president did what he had to do to win and that he remains an avid supporter. “His wife drives the bus in his family,” Ave said with a laugh. “My wife drives the bus in my family.”

With Obama scoring battleground state victories in Virginia, Colorado, Nevada, Wisconsin, New Hampshire and Iowa, among others, it turned out he could have won reelection without Ohio. But the candidates' intense focus on the state, despite the nastiness, inspired many of Ohio's nearly 8 million voters.

More than an hour before dawn on Tuesday, a line started forming outside the Worthington Presbyterian Church polling station in a suburb of Columbus. So it went all over Ohio, as voters turned out in force to play their part in electing the president.

“It's something people around here take some pride in - that we have maybe a disproportionate amount of control in the outcome,” said Doug Metz, a retired lawyer who showed up a few hours later to cast his ballot for Mitt Romney. “There are some solid people around here who make some good decisions. People around here are grounded.”

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)2012 Los Angeles Times

Visit the Los Angeles Times at www.latimes.com

Distributed by MCT Information Services

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PHOTOS (from MCT Photo Service, 202-383-6099): ELN

GRAPHICS (from MCT Graphics, 202-383-6064): ELN

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Topics: t000002953,t000047702,t000194684,t000047694,t000047683,g000362661,g000065579,g000066164



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