Election night blog: Obama calls for unity

Mansfield vote

Credit: Getty Images

A voter casts her ballot on November 6, 2012 in Mansfield, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)



Posted on November 6, 2012 at 5:42 PM

Updated Tuesday, Nov 12 at 5:59 PM

Here is a minute-by-minute log of Tuesday's developments leading to the reelection of President Barack Obama from WFAA, ABC News, CNN, the Associated Press and Getty Images.

12:37a President Obama emerges with his family in Chicago as a recording of Stevie Wonder's "Signed, Sealed, Delivered" plays in the background.

"Tonight, more than 200 years after a former colony won the right to determine its own destiny, the task of perfecting our union moves forward. It moves forward because of you," the president told cheering supporters. "We are an American family, and we rise and fall together as one nation ... we know in our hearts that for the United States of America, the best is yet to come."

He pledged to work with leaders of both parties to solve problems. Read the full story. - WFAA

11:58p Mitt Romney says he has called President Obama to concede defeat. "This is a time of great challenges for America, and I pray the president will be successful in guiding our nation," the Republican told supporters in Boston. "I believe in America. I believe in the people of America. And I ran for office because I'm concerned about America." And talking about his wife, Ann: "She would have been a wonderful first lady." Read the full story.  - WFAA

11:50p Republican Mitt Romney calls President Barack Obama to concede defeat. Romney is expected to address his supporters in Boston within 10 minutes; that will be followed by Obama's victory address.  - AP

11:36p President Barack Obama has just sent this e-mail to supporters:

I'm about to go speak to the crowd here in Chicago, but I wanted to thank you first.

I want you to know that this wasn't fate, and it wasn't an accident. You made this happen.

You organized yourselves block by block. You took ownership of this campaign five and ten dollars at a time. And when it wasn't easy, you pressed forward.

I will spend the rest of my presidency honoring your support, and doing what I can to finish what we started.

But I want you to take real pride, as I do, in how we got the chance in the first place.

Today is the clearest proof yet that, against the odds, ordinary Americans can overcome powerful interests.

There's a lot more work to do.

But for right now: Thank you.


11:24p More than an hour after the major networks projected that Barack Obama will win his reelection bid, the president's supporters are still waiting to hear him speak at a rally in Chicago. Stunned Mitt Romney partisans are waiting in Boston for the Republican to concede defeat. - WFAA

10:49p State Sen. Wendy Davis declares victory in her bitterly-fought race with Republican challenger Mark Shelton. Davis said she is "proud" and "humbled." With 92 percent of precincts reporting, Davis leads 51-49 percent with a margin of about 5,500 votes. - Teresa Woodard, Monika Diaz and Brad Watson

10:35p President Barack Obama stepped to the brink of re-election Tuesday night, capturing battleground Ohio from Mitt Romney and edging ahead in other pivotal states despite a weak economy and high unemployment that crimped the middle class dreams of millions. At home in Chicago, the president all but claimed victory. "This happened because of you. Thank you" he tweeted to supporters. Romney was in Massachusetts after a long and grueling bid for the presidency. He led in the national popular vote with 41 million votes, or 50 percent. Obama had 40 million, or 49 percent, with 59 percent of the precincts tallied. But Obama led in the competition for electoral votes, where it mattered most. - AP

10:17p CNN projects Barack Obama wins in Ohio and will be reelected. - CNN

10:16p NBC and Fox News have just called the election for Barack Obama. - NBC and Fox News

10:13p CNN projects Barack Obama wins the swing state of Wisconsin and its 10 electoral votes. - CNN

10:11p Tarrant County Democrats cheer the news of President Obama's projected win in Iowa. - Monika Diaz in Fort Worth

10:10p CNN projects a win for Barack Obama in Iowa. - CNN

10:09p AP projects Barack Obama wins in New Mexico; Mitt Romney takes Missouri. - AP

10:06p In the race for State Senate District 10, Democrat Wendy Davis has opened up a lead of about 5,000 votes, but she's ahead of Republican Mark Shelton by only a 51 to 49 percent  margin. "The night is still young; there's a lot of votes left to be counted," Shelton said. - Teresa Woodard and Jim Douglas reporting from Fort Worth

10:03p Sen. Claire McCaskill has won re-election in Missouri, holding off Rep. Todd Akin who came under fire for saying women had ways of preventing pregnancies in the case of "legitimate rape." McCaskill's victory denies Republicans a seat they'd hoped to pick up before Akin's comments. Democrats have picked up two Senate seats from the Republicans — Elizabeth Warren in Massachusetts and Joe Donnelly in Indiana — while the GOP has lost three seats, including to an independent in Maine. As of 9:45 p.m. Central time, Democrats had locked up 45 seats, Republicans 42, including 67 seats not up for election. Democrats now hold a 53-seat majority, including two independents who align with them. - AP

10:01p AP projects Barack Obama wins in California, Washington and Hawaii; Mitt Romney wins in Idaho. - AP

9:54p AP projects a North Carolina win for Mitt Romney. CNN says Barack Obama will win in Minnesota. - AP and CNN

9:45p AP projects Barack Obama wins all five electoral votes in Nebraska. - AP

9:44p AP projects Barack Obama wins in New Hampshire. - AP

9:41p Our reporters have been spread out across the region –– and in Brad Watson's case, the state –– covering Election Day. We've put together another Storify of their work this evening, which they've shared on social media. It shows the scenes from Republican and Democratic watch parties from both Tarrant and Dallas Counties. - WFAA


9:38p AP projects Mitt Romney will win Arizona - AP

9:25p ABC News projects President Obama will win Wisconsin, a swing state - ABC News

9:20p ABC News projects President Obama will win New Mexico - ABC News

9:15p Republican Ted Cruz is appearing before supporters in Houston to declare victory in his U.S. Senate race with Democrat Paul Sadler. "They said it couldn't be done, but when the people stand together, nothing is impossible," Cruz said. "What an incredible, magical journey!" - WFAA

9:14p ABC News projects Romney will take five out of five electoral college votes in Nebraska - ABC News

9:09p AP projects Barack Obama will win in Pennsylvania. - AP

9:01p CNN projects Mitt Romney will win in Utah. - CNN

8:58p Republican Mark Shelton said he's "anxiously waiting" for more returns in his District 10 State Senate race against Democrat Wendy Davis. With only early voting returns available almost two hours after the polls closed, Shelton is in the lead by less than a 1 percent margin. "Any time you're ahead, it's good numbers," Shelton told News 8. - WFAA

8:53p ABC News is projecting President Obama will win Minnesota as well as New Hampshire, a swing state - ABC News

8:43p Republican Ted Cruz is preparing to declare victory in the U.S. Senate race. WATCH LIVE - WFAA

8:36p Dallas County Democrats waiting for the presidential race results have run out of food; their watch party attracted 100 more people than they'd planned for. - Jason Whitely in Dallas

8:24p Texas Sen. Royce West says he's confident President Obama will win reelection. The crowd at the Obama watch party appeared to be cautiously optimistic about the outcome. - Jason Whitely in Dallas

8:22p Democrats at watch parties in Dallas and Tarrant Counties cheered as results coming in from Pennsylvania showing Barack Obama in the lead; then there were boos as Republican Ted Cruz was named the winner of the vacant U.S. Senate seat in Texas. - Monika Diaz in Tarrant County and Teresa Woodard in Dallas County

8:19p President Barack Obama won the reliably Democratic Northeast, and Republican Mitt Romney secured his Republican conservative base Tuesday night in a tense duel for the White House shadowed by a weak economy and high unemployment. The critical battlegrounds with the key to victory were unsettled — Virginia, Ohio and Florida among them — with long lines in many locations after poll-close time. Romney led in the national popular vote with 13 million votes, or 51 percent, to 12 million or 47 percent for Obama, with 10 percent of the precincts tallied. Read the full story. - AP

8:12p With 76 percent of Florida precincts reporting, Mitt Romney leads Barack Obama by less than 1,300 votes. - CNN

8:11p Dallas County Democrats project a sweep of local races for the first time, including sheriff; judges; tax assessor; and two commissioners. - Jason Whitely reporting

8:09p Tea party-backed Republican Ted Cruz has won the race for Texas' open U.S. Senate seat. Cruz beat former Democratic state representative Paul Sadler. The ex-state solicitor general was heavily favored since Texas has not elected a Democrat to the U.S. Senate since Lloyd Bentsen in 1988. Cruz succeeds retiring Republican Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison. - AP

8:08p CNN projects that Republicans will maintain majority control of the U.S. House of Representatives. - CNN

8:07p Watch: David Schecter talks with political analyst Jeff Eller about the impact of social media on the 2012 election. - WFAA

8:01p CNN projects Texas, Kansas, Lousiana, Mississippi, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming for Mitt Romney; Michigan, New Jersey and New York for Obama.  Romney has 152 electoral votes and Obama has 123; 270 are necessary to win. - CNN

7:58p  ABC News projects President Obama will win New York - ABC News

7:39p The electoral vote total swings back to Mitt Romney with 73 to Barack Obama's 64. - CNN

7:33p ABC News projects Mitt Romney will win in Tennessee. - ABC News

7:31p Barack Obama has a 58 to 40 percent lead in the popular vote so far in Ohio, with about 20 percent of the vote counted. - ABC News and CNN

7:30p ABC News projects Romney will win in Georgia and Alabama. - ABC News

7:17p President Barack Obama moved ahead Tuesday night in the race for the White House, rolling up victory margins in the reliably Democratic Northeast and at home in Illinois. Republican Mitt Romney secured his conservative base in an election season shadowed by a weak economy and high unemployment. Romney led in the popular vote, gaining 51 percent to the president's 47 percent with 1 percent of the precincts reporting. But the early-deciding states gave Obama 64 of the 270 electoral votes needed to win the White House, to 40 for Romney. - AP

7:16p CNN projects that Mitt Romney will win in Georgia. - CNN

7:07p Early voting returns in the U.S. Senate race show Republican Ted Cruz with 62 percent of the vote in his race with Democrat Paul Sadler. - WFAA

7:05p The polls are now closed in Texas. Early voting returns from Tarrant County show Dr. Mark Shelton holding a razor-thin 50.38 percent to 49.62 percent margin over Wendy Davis in the District 10 State Senate race. - WFAA

7:01p CNN projects Barack Obama as the winner in Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Maine and Rhode Island. Mitt Romney wins in Oklahoma, CNN says. At this moment, Obama has 64 electoral votes and Romney has 40; 270 are needed to win the White House.  - CNN

6:58p Mitt Romney is the projected winner in Indiana. - AP

6:55p Sporadic problems were reported Tuesday at polling places around the country, many in Pennsylvania including a confrontation involving Republican inspectors over access to some polls and a voting machine that lit up for Republican Mitt Romney even when a voter pressed the button for President Barack Obama. One Florida elections office mistakenly told voters in robocalls the election was on Wednesday. - AP

6:42p Vanquished U.S. Senate Republican primary rival David Dewhurst will attend the Ted Cruz election night event in Houston. Cruz is expected to defeat Democratic rival Paul Sadler. - Brad Watson reporting from Houston

6:38p ABC News projects Mitt Romney the winner in South Carolina. - ABC News

6:32p Mitt Romney projected as winner in West Virginia. - AP

6:31p ABC is not projecting a winner in the key swing state of Ohio now that the polls have closed. - ABC News

6:27p Polls in North Carolina, Ohio and West Virginia close at 6:30 p.m. CT. - WFAA

6:25p CNN is calling Indiana for Mitt Romney. - CNN

6:22p Mitt Romney leads in the early popular vote by a margin of 63 to 35 percent. That's not a surprise because many of the earliest precincts reporting are in reliably Republican Kentucky and Indiana. - AP

6:18p "We're in the no surprise area," said WFAA political analyst Jeff Eller. "Virginia's polls close at 7 o'clock our time ... if they're comfortable making a projection early, I think it'll be a relatively short night. Virginia is the state that I would watch early on tonight."  As of this minute, Mitt Romney is projected to win 19 electoral votes, and Barack Obama has 3; 270 are needed to win the White House. - WFAA

6:04p The Associated Press and CNN project Barack Obama as the winner in Vermont; CNN projects Romney the winner in Kentucky. View the national presidential election map. - WFAA

5:56p Speaking to reporters on his plane, Mitt Romney says, "I've only written one speech at this point." Which, reportedly, weighs in at 1,118 words long. President Barack Obama, meanwhile, tells a Denver Fox affiliate he has two speeches at the ready.CNN & FOX31

5:32p As News 8's David Schechter showed viewers during the 5 p.m. newscast, staffers and supporters of both the Romney and Obama campaigns are letting the public inside through social media. Take a look at the Storify timeline below, which includes Romney on his airplane and Obama making a special Election Day visit to a Chicago polling center. - WFAA


5:13p Jonathan Brownlee of Dallas said his name wasn't on the list of registered voters at his polling place Tuesday. "I knew that I was registered," he told News 8. It appears that the registration information wasn't transferred to local election officials. - Steve Stoler, WFAA

4:38p Polling places in Texas will be open until 7 p.m. Tuesday. Any voters in line at that time will be permitted to cast a ballot.  Click to find your polling place. - WFAA

4:28p A YouTube user in central Pennsylvania has posted a video that appears to show a voting maching highlighting the Romney/Ryan ticket as the user kept selecting Obama/Biden. - YouTube

4:24p A spokeswoman for the Texas Secretary of State says a computer issue in Southeast Texas is the only trouble so far affecting Election Day voters in the state. Alicia Pierce says Secretary of State Hope Andrade has received "no major reports" of trouble other than in Galveston County, where a computer issue delayed the opening of polls. - AP

4:04p Mitt Romney tells reporters he's written a 1,118-word victory speech; he said it's the only speech he has prepared. - Steve Brusk, CNN