Why Ohio, Florida, and Virginia are still too close to call

The Week's Editorial Staff
The Week
Mitt Romney really needs a win in Florida to win the White House. But so far, things aren't looking good.

Initial analysis on the returns in several key battleground states

All eyes are on Ohio, Virginia, and Florida, key battleground states that could decide the race between President Obama and Mitt Romney. The three states are still too close to call, with CNN projecting a 50-50 tie in Florida with 76 percent of the vote counted; a solid lead of 53-45 for Romney in Virginia with 41 percent of the vote counted; and a 55-40 Obama lead in Ohio with 30 percent of the vote counted. (Obama is projected to win Pennsylvania, a blue state that Romney visited in the final days of the race, but has long been considered out of reach for the GOP candidate.)

There are some early signs that Obama is putting in a strong performance in Florida, while Romney is doing better than expected in northern Virginia. The Sunshine State, with 29 electoral votes, is a must-win for Romney, and an Obama victory there would be a virtual checkmate to seal victory. 

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In general, exit polls and early results show a general alignment with pre-election state polls, which is considered good news for Obama, who was shown as the favorite in Ohio, a state that could make or break his re-election:

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— Matt Yglesias (@mattyglesias) November 7, 2012

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However, it can't be stressed enough that the races in all three of these states are too early too call. And there is a good chance that results from Florida and Ohio could be legally challenged in the coming days. 

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