President Obama recovers from post-debate slump to win a second term
Barack Obama has earned four more years of job security, with the American voters electing the president to a second term on Tuesday.
Obama won a second term based on his win of the battleground state of Ohio, which gave him an electoral-college vote of 274 to 203.
NBC was first to declare for Obama. ABC, CBS, CNN and Fox News also quickly projected he had won.
While NBC noted that the Romney campaign had not yet conceded Ohio, Obama appears to have scored a decisive win overal. As of midnight ET, the president still had a slim lead in Florida with almost all of the votes counted.
Fox News contributor and Republican strategist Karl Rove was one of the few voices of dissent. He suggested on Fox News that the network might have been premature in calling the election for Obama, noting his own experience as an advisor to George W. Bush during the bitterly contested 2000 election.
Obama was far from a shoo-in for re-election. His first-term triumphs included passing national health care and ordering the killing of Osama bin Laden, but he was weighted down by high unemployment and a troubled economy. He never developed a beyond-doubt lead over his opponent, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, and most polls in the final days of the race called it a toss-up.
Though Obama appeared to lead heading into the first debate, his sluggish performance helped Romney surge. Obama improved dramatically in subsequent debates and earned goodwill for his handling of Hurricane Sandy.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, an adamant Obama foe, said that Obama's response was "outstanding" and that he deserved "great credit."
On Election Day, Nate Silver's 538 blog for the New York Times had Obama winning the election with 313 electoral votes — the highest number of electoral votes he'd been predicted to take since Oct. 7, a few days after the first debate. Silver gave Obama a 91 percent chance of winning.
Obama and his running mate Joe Biden picked up 365 electoral votes in the 2008 election against John McCain and Sarah Palin.