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Polls Closed In Virginia, But Race Too Close To Call


From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Lynn Neary. And the results are starting to come in. At this hour, polls in six states have closed. That includes the all-important swing state of Virginia. It's the only state in the bunch that is too close to call. In South Carolina, Georgia, Kentucky and Indiana, NPR projects that Mitt Romney will win. And in Vermont, the NPR projection is a win for President Obama. No surprises there.

We go now to NPR election headquarters and the regular hosts of this program who tonight are anchoring our special coverage, Melissa Block and Robert Siegel.


Thank you, Lynn. And Melissa, looks like a long night we're in for.


It does look like a long night.

SIEGEL: We have the presidential race and, of course, many tightly contested Senate races.

BLOCK: A third of the Senate and all the House seats, of course.

SIEGEL: And we're going to begin with the state that, as Lynn Neary just said, is far too close to call at this hour: Virginia. The polls have closed. NPR's Brian Naylor is in Richmond at the Democratic Party's event there and I want you to tell us about this presidential battleground state and who seems to be doing well there this year.

BRIAN NAYLOR, BYLINE: Well, Robert, it's pretty much neck and neck. It has been throughout the election campaign. It's been very, very tight. Romney was up a little bit earlier and President Obama's been up a little bit later, but it's only been by a point or two. The thing that struck me in Richmond today was listening to the radio and there were still TV campaign ads on the radio and on the TV.

So clearly, the Romney campaign isn't going down without a fight. In fact, Paul Ryan stopped off at the Richmond airport this afternoon, so clearly they still think the state is very much in play and it could be a long evening here before we find out.

SIEGEL: And, of course, in addition to the presidential race in Virginia, we have one of the closest Senate races in the country. The Democrat Jim Webb is not seeking a second term. Former Governor Tim Kaine is the Democrat who's running and George Allen, former senator, but also former Republican governor is running and that's a very close race as well.

NAYLOR: It is indeed. Former Senator Allen and former Governor Kaine have been going crisscrossing the state campaigning. They both have had very strong ground games we're told and it's been an incredibly expensive race, one of the more expensive Senate races in the country. Tim Kaine raised $17 million. Allen raised $13 million and outside groups have been spending upwards of $10 million on this race.

So a lot of money has been poured into ads and again, it's a very close race. In the last couple of weeks, Mr. Kaine seems to have a bit of a lead, but we'll find out what happens.

SIEGEL: We'll find out what happens later tonight in the Senate race and the presidential race in Virginia. Melissa? Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Prior to his retirement, Robert Siegel was the senior host of NPR's award-winning evening newsmagazine All Things Considered. With 40 years of experience working in radio news, Siegel hosted the country's most-listened-to, afternoon-drive-time news radio program and reported on stories and happenings all over the globe, and reported from a variety of locations across Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, and Asia. He signed off in his final broadcast of All Things Considered on January 5, 2018.
NPR News' Brian Naylor is a correspondent on the Washington Desk. In this role, he covers politics and federal agencies.
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