Suspense to the end, both tickets in Cleveland

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The election played out with intensity in the small subset of battleground states: Colorado, Iowa, Florida, New Hampshire, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia and Wisconsin. Mr. Romney’s late move to add Pennsylvania to the mix was an effort to expand his options, and Republicans poured millions into previously empty airwaves there.

In the campaign’s final hours, voters around the country echoed the closing arguments of the two presidential candidates.

Jim Clark, a 42-year-old computer administrator from Topeka, Kan., is a registered Republican who voted for Mr. Obama in 2008, seeking change. But he voted Tuesday for Mr. Romney after losing a full-time job two years ago and working temporary assignments since then.

“I’m just ready for a change,” Mr. Clark said. “It’s tougher for me, personally. The economy has not improved.”

But 35-year-old Tamara Johnson of Apex, N.C., said she was sticking with Mr. Obama even though she’s not as enthusiastic as four years ago.

“I wouldn’t say it’s easy,” said the 35-year-old customs broker as she voted at the Wake County Firearms Education & Training Center. “I have to take into account everything that’s been going on and everything I feel will go on. Not just for myself and the future, but for my kids. And I think I made the right choice.”

Nedra Pickler reported from Washington. Associated Press writers Julie Pace in Chicago; Wayne Parry in Point Pleasant, N.J.; Allen Breed in Apex, N.C.; John Hanna in Topeka, Kan.; Darlene Superville in Arlington, Va.; and Philip Elliott and Matthew Daly in Cleveland contributed to this report.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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