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Finalist Cities for Dems’ 2012 Convention Are in Prime Swing States

Earlier today, Democratic National Committee Chairman Tim Kaine announced the four finalist cities for the 2012 Democratic National Convention in an email to committee members. Three of the lucky four — Charlotte, Cleveland, Minneapolis and St. Louis — are in prime swing states.

It’s clear why Charlotte and St. Louis are in the list — North Carolina and Missouri were the two states with the closest margins of victory in the 2008 presidential election. John McCain won Missouri by .14 percent — 3,903 votes. Obama won North Carolina by .32 percent — 14,177 votes.

Ohio was also close, though not to the same degree as Missouri and North Carolina. Obama took the Buckeye State by 4.59 percent — 262,224 votes. Still, Cleveland’s pick as a finalist shows the DNC wants to do everything it can to keep Ohio in the Democratic column. Most unofficial studies indicate Ohio will have two fewer electoral votes in 2012 than it did in 2008 — down to 18.

The inclusion of Minneapolis on this list is an oddity if one only looks at the 2008 results. Minnesota gave Obama a very comfortable 10.2 percent victory margin — far larger than the wins Al Gore and John Kerry scored in the state in the previous two contests. But the state is perpetually on the GOP’s radar. Also worth noting: Minneapolis co-hosted the Republicans’ 2008 convention with neighboring St. Paul, and Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty is very likely to be a contender for the Republicans’ 2012 presidential nod.

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