US election: Stage set for Obama - win or lose

Workers complete the final details on US President Barack Obama's election night event at McCormick Place in Chicago, Illinois

At least President Obama had one victory tonight. He played basketball with staff and friends and won the game by 20 points. That's giving his opponents quite a beating. He must be hoping it is an omen.

He's at home now, but later will move across Chicago to a conference centre.

The podium in the middle of the stage looks a lonely sort of spot. It is here that the president will come to talk to the nation - win or lose.

At the moment of writing, a man is reciting "green eggs and ham" to test out the sound-system.

Earlier, they were belting out soul music. It seemed they were preparing for a party, not a wake.

Earlier the president said: "I also want to say to Governor Romney, congratulations on a spirited campaign.

"I know that his supporters are just as engaged, and just as enthusiastic, and working just as hard today.

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"We feel confident we've got the votes to win, that it's going to depend ultimately on whether those votes turn out. And so I would encourage everybody, on all sides, just to make sure that you exercise this precious right that you have - that people fought so hard for, for us to have."

Congratulating your opponent and encouraging his supporters to vote is quite something. If he is faking it, he has got me fooled.

But being president doesn't mean you have a crystal ball. I think the optimism is genuine, but it doesn't mean it is right.

But the Democrats are very proud of their ground game, and the president played his own part in it today. He went to a local campaign office and phoned a surprised potential supporter.

If he wins, it will probably be because of the hard work in getting out the vote. One-hundred-and-eighty thousand volunteers have been working three-hour shifts in the swing states to squeeze out every last voter.

It won't be long before we get some indication whether it has worked.

The BBC will be providing full online live results of the US presidential election on 6 November. More details here .

Mark Mardell Article written by Mark Mardell Mark Mardell Presenter, The World This Weekend

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US Presidential Election 2012


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  • rate this

    Comment number 89.

    71. powermeerkat "And what makes you think situation in next 4 years will be different?"

    One can only hope the Republican's get in touch with reality and drop their commitment to useless Ayn Rand ideology. Ideology is just an excuse to avoid thinking seriously about issues and seeking solutions based on objective analysis.

  • rate this

    Comment number 88.

    70. MagicKirin "This is no longer an America where hard work is considered a virture..."

    The usual BS. MagicKirin suffers from the delusion that only he and Tea Baggers work hard. One can hardly expect reality based comment from him.

  • rate this

    Comment number 87.

    The "cliff" could be our friend. Sun-setting the Bush tax cuts would add $8t in revenue over a decade. Congress could renegotiate half the cuts back, and more if equal to REAL new spending cuts, returning us to the $4t "grand bargain" aborted by the 'tea party' two years ago. It would be tough, but would give us certainty and a valid path forward.

  • rate this

    Comment number 86.

    Heaven help us now.

    Obama and the left will continue their push for more and bigger government, more spending, and more taxes. The economy will continue to suffer and maybe grow at 1%, if at all, and the deficit will get even bigger.

    The right will continue to do everything it can to not let that happen.

    So, my lefty friends: when it tanks, take a good look in the mirror for whom to blame

  • rate this

    Comment number 85.

    81. HungeryWalleye
    I agree, but



Comments 5 of 89


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