Bloomberg by the Numbers: 7.1

Photograph by Robert Browman/Getty Images

Supporters cheer as Democratic presidential hopeful U.S. Sen. Barack Obama speaks during a campaign rally at the St. Pete Times Forum in this May 21, 2008 file photo in Tampa, Florida.

That’s the percentage-point margin of victory in the 2008 election for President Barack Obama in Hillsborough County, Florida, where Republicans are holding their national convention in Tampa.

Hillsborough is a swing county in a swing state that is drawing the attention of Obama, Republican challenger Mitt Romney and allies of the candidates. Hillsborough also is a bellwether: the county has voted the way Florida has voted in presidential elections since the 1960s.

The 53.18 percent to 46.05 percent margin by which Obama won Hillsborough four years ago was close to his nationwide victory margin of 52.9 percent to 45.7 percent.

Obama ran ahead of 2004 Democratic nominee John Kerry by seven percentage points in Hillsborough, which backed President George W. Bush by 53.0 percent to 46.2 percent, close to Bush’s Florida victory margin of 52.1 percent to 47.1 percent.

In just three other Florida counties — Osceola and Orange in the Orlando area and Duval in Jacksonville — did Obama exceed Kerry’s vote percentage by a larger margin than in Hillsborough.


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