Barack Obama wins and will serve a second term as president after a hard-fought election.
The Associated Press is calling the presidential election for Obama after Romney lost Ohio and several other key states.
The Chicago convention center where Obama supporters have gathered to watch the results is exploding in joy and enthusiasm.
Not so the Romney camp in Boston, which has been muted as results increasingly showed the tally of electoral votes rising in Obama’s column.
Obama’s campaign projected confidence Tuesday night as election results rolled in, but waited nervously for some of the biggest prizes to be awarded.
Obama aides said their internal numbers had them on track for victory. And staffers at the president’s campaign headquarters in Chicago were cheering and high-fiving as the results came in.
Still, the campaign was laser-focused on the 18 electoral votes in Ohio, the Midwest swing state where Obama and Republican Mitt Romney competed fiercely. The Democratic ticket was optimistic about its prospects in the state where the president’s bailout of the auto industry is widely popular.
Obama’s team was also closely watching Florida to see if more Democratic votes materialized in a state that Obama won in 2008. Yet the president doesn’t need a victory there to reach the required 270 Electoral College votes.
Obama, along with his wife and daughters, left his Chicago home around 10:30 p.m. and headed to the downtown hotel where several longtime aides were watching the election results. The Obamas were expected to stay at the hotel until the race is called.
The president kicked off Election Day with a surprise visit to a campaign office near his South Side home.
Thunderous applause from about two dozen volunteers, many with tears streaming down their faces, greeted Obama. Removing his suit coat, he sat down to make some calls to volunteers in neighboring Wisconsin. “Let’s get busy,” he said.