President Barack Obama and Vice-President Joe Biden were re-elected Tuesday night, defeating Republican challenger Mitt Romney and his vice-presidential running mate Rep. Paul Ryan.
NBC News called the presidential election for Obama around 11:15 EST. The president sent a message on Twitter at 10:14 saying simply, "This happened because of you. Thank you."
The Obama campaign won the most expensive presidential race ever, with both parties raising about $2.6 billion. The race was filled with negative campaigning on both sides, from President Obama attacking Romney’s business experience with Bain Capital to Romney lambasting Obama’s handling of the economy.
The race tightened during the final months of the campaign, with gaffes and surges from both candidates. After a weak performance after the Republican Convention, Romney surged following Obama’s listless performance after the first presidential debate. Nevertheless, the president cemented a lead in battleground states heading into Tuesday’s election.
Neither candidate devoted much time to campaigning in Missouri, which has leaned heavily to the right in the past several presidential cycles. Romney campaigned in Kirkwood several months ago, and he was heavily favored to take Missouri's 10 electoral votes—which he did.
The economy was a key issue for many voters in the state as well as jobs and Obama's push for universal health care. The campaign, while not close in Missouri, was seen as close by some voters nationally.
"I'm here to hopefully have a change in the country. The economy. No jobs. Tax increases on things that aren't necessary. Just the whole mood of the economy," Jack Cusamano of Town and Country said. "I just want to see a leader do what they say they're going to do and help the small people succeed."
Will Edgar, 18, was undecided until this morning when he decided jobs might tilt him toward Romney. The issue that tilted him toward Mitt Romney concerns Edgar's choice of future career: underwater welding.
"I'm going to school to be an underwater welder and Mitt's all for starting all sorts of drilling, particularly off the East Coast," he said, adding that Obama has sought to restrict it. So, when did he decide? "When I woke up this morning."
Rick Luebcke of Chesterfield, a lifelong Republican, voted for Obama.
"While I spent my career with a major automobile company and have supported the Republican Party, I just don't think that their opinion of how the country should be run helps the people of the country in which they live," he said.
Cole West, of Arnold, told Patch he was pro-Obama because of the president's stance on health care.
"My 4-year-old has a heart condition, and Obama's plan would eliminate the pre-existing condition clause so my daughter Ava could get health insurance," West said.