North Carolina: One key to an Obama victory lies within Mecklenburg County

When looking at the various regions of North Carolina and assessing which areas of the state are least/most likely to vote overwhelmingly for Obama, it can be more than likely to fall this way:

1) Triangle/RDU - the Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill region is Obama's most loyal base area, especially considering how "liberal" this section of the state tends to be with all of the universities, colleges, and medical-oriented companies that comprise most of the 'Research Triangle Park'.  So...Obama win big time here.

2) Triad - the Greensboro/Winston-Salem/High Point region also offers it's own large, collegiate pocket of liberal voters, but not as many as the Triangle.  For every Obama vote here, McCain is able to match with one of his own.  McCain's vote in this area comes from the agricultural/manufacturing voter who is more culturally conservative.  So...Obama probably will win (barely), but it wouldn't be a shocker to see McCain win either - 50/50.

and lastly, one major KEY to an Obama victory...

3) The Queen City - Charlotte, the state's largest city, is also the nation's 2nd largest banking center behind New York.  Lots of colleges and universities here as well, but none with the international recognition like Duke, UNC, or NC State up in the Triangle.  Where the Raleigh-Durham area has an overwhelming "medical" tilt, Charlotte has an overwhelming "banking" tilt.  Charlotte, and the entire Mecklenburg County area tends to be the conservative counterpart to the Triangle's liberal sibling.  BUT, BUT, BUT, here is the reason why Mecklenburg County's vote will probably seal a win or a loss for Obama in the state: (after the jump)

If Obama is able to rack up hefty totals in the Raleigh/Durham region, along with a win by decent to large numbers in the Greensboro/Winston-Salem region, plus add in a solid, but consolidated win in Asheville (not the entire Mountain region, just the city of Asheville) and then if the Charlotte area voters give Obama a win, albeit it needs to be a solid win, but not necessarily huge, then Obama will win North Carolina.  All of these Obama votes should be enough to hold back McCain's support from the Fayetteville/Sandhills region and the eastern NC region, which are home to Fort Bragg and Camp Lejeune respectively and all of the "military" support.

Mecklenburg County has a long history of voting for the Republican candidate in a presidential election...up until 2004 when the county Democratic Party had a spectacular GOTV effort that actually pushed Kerry to the county win, much to the surprise of many area citizens.  Much of this too has to do with a rapidly growing population that is being deluged with new citizens from the Northeast and some retirees from Florida.

The last update from the Mecklenburg Board of Elections stated that as of today, almost 1/3 of all registered voters in the county had already voted early, with Obama leading McCain substantially in these early votes.  So, if Obama can maintain the turnout, it appears that Mecklenburg County will vote for the Democratic candidate for the second election in a row possibly?  This is key for Obama to win the state.  If he loses Charlotte, he will face a uphill climb to win the state, but if he wins Charlotte, then he can breathe a bit easier as he battles (still gonna have a big task ahead) for the state.

NOTE:  The Obama camp must be in similar agreement with my assessment because Obama will be making a stop in Charlotte on Monday at 5:30pm on the campus of UNC-Charlotte for a rally before making his last election visit in Virginia, en route to Chicago.

Tags: 2008, Election, obama, Presidential, victory (all tags)

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