Press Releases


AP calls the presidential race – state by state

NEW YORK -- Since 1848, the Associated Press has counted the votes on which many news organizations base their projections and declare winners.

Executive Editor Kathleen Carroll described AP’s election night count this way:
“The rock stars of AP’s race-calling operation are the dozens of staffers across the United States who have spent weeks, months and sometimes years studying the voting patterns of individual precincts, parishes, counties and states.
“They spend election night staring at computer screens watching the vote count come in, discussing what the count tells them and what’s yet to know. They study a number of statistical models built on historical patterns and vote count and constantly ask questions like these: How many votes are still out? What counties are they in? Are there enough outstanding votes to change what the current vote shows?”

She continued:

“Getting the calls right is the most important thing they do. The reputation of the entire AP rests on every one of these calls. That’s why the most important question each of them ask about each race is this:
“Are we 99.7 percent sure? When they are sure, AP names a winner in that race. News flies to the world and the team moves on to the next race.
“As these race callers work through the night and into the morning, they are methodical, serious, focused and, you may be surprised to learn, pretty quiet.
“But they are, without a doubt, rock stars.”

The following is a chronology of APNewsAlerts calling the U.S. presidential race in each state (all times Eastern). At this time, Florida remains too close to call.

Nov. 6, 2012

19:05: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins Vermont; Romney wins Kentucky.

19:30: WASHINGTON (AP) — Romney wins West Virginia.

19:55: WASHINGTON (AP) — Romney wins South Carolina.

19:56: WASHINGTON (AP) — Romney wins Indiana.

20:01: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins IL, CT, ME, DC, DE, RI, MD, MA; Romney wins OK.

20:21: WASHINGTON (AP) — Romney wins Tennessee.

20:28: WASHINGTON (AP) — Romney wins Georgia.

20:46: WASHINGTON (AP) — Romney wins Alabama.

21:02: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins NY; Romney wins NE, WY, KS, LA, SD, TX, ND, MI.

21:06: WASHINGTON (AP) — CORRECTS: Obama wins NY, MI; Romney wins NE, WY, KS, LA, SD, TX, ND. (Corrects APNewsAlert )

21:10: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins New Jersey; Romney wins Arkansas.

21:13: WASHINGTON (AP) — Romney wins Mississippi.

21:48: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins Pennsylvania.

22:00: WASHINGTON (AP) — Romney wins Utah.

22:04: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins New Hampshire.

22:28: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins all 4 electoral votes in Maine.

22:36: WASHINGTON (AP) — Romney wins Arizona.

22:44: WASHINGTON (AP) — Romney wins all 5 electoral votes in Nebraska.

22:53: WASHINGTON (AP) — Romney wins North Carolina.

22:57: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins Minnesota.

23:00: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins CA, WA, HI; Romney wins ID.

23:09: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins New Mexico; Romney wins Missouri.

23:17: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins Ohio.

23:19: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins Iowa.

23:29: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins Oregon.

23:38: WASHINGTON (AP) — Barack Obama re-elected president. [Call based on AP’s determination that Obama had won Colorado, thereby exceeding the necessary 270 electoral votes. Separately, AP’s Colorado wire reported at 23:39 that Obama had won the state. ]

23:43: WASHINGTON (AP) — Democrats retain control of the Senate.

23:46: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins Colorado.

23:47: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins Wisconsin.

23:54: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins Nevada.

Nov. 7, 2012

00:37: WASHINGTON (AP) — Obama wins Virginia.

00:42: WASHINGTON (AP) — Romney wins Montana.

00:49: CHICAGO (AP) — Obama aide: Romney concedes to Obama in a phone call.

00:58: BOSTON (AP) — Romney: ‘I pray that the president will be successful in guiding our nation’

1:30: WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans win control of House for 2 more years, assuring more clashes with Obama.

1:43: CHICAGO (AP) — Victorious Obama: ‘We have picked ourselves up,’ fought our way back, ‘best is yet to come’

1:57: WASHINGTON (AP) — Romney wins Alaska.


Paul Colford
Director of Media Relations

Erin Madigan White
Media Relations Manager

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