The official vote count in Ohio shows Bush beating carry by 119,000 votes. Less than the unofficial count on election night, but not close enough to trigger an automatic recount. Still, Ohio is a Red State by only slightly more than the attendance at a single Ohio State home football game.
This USA today article shows just how smart Rove and Company are. It wasn’t just the content of their message, it was where the focused it. The Dems concentrated on their traditional urban constinuency, while the Republicans, knowing that the rural vote in a state like Ohio is not enough by itself to offset the big cities, put heavy duty time in the “micropolitan” areas: those formerly all-rural areas that now include a fair amount of urbanization, like a Toyota assembly plant and suburbanites who are moving even farther out of the big cities.
Bush stomped all over Kerry in these counties. In Ohio, he took something like 28 out of 30 of the micropolitan counties. Doubtless those 119,000 votes could be found right there. So, it’s all well and good for the Dems to rethink their message, whatever that may be. They’ve got to rethink where that message is going as well.