Two fierce competitors who've given their all, President Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney, now yield center stage to voters for an Election Day choice that will frame the contours of government and the nation for years to come.
After a grinding campaign that packed suspense to the finish, Americans head into polling places in sleepy hollows, bustling cities and superstorm-ravaged beach towns deeply divided. All sides are awaiting, in particular, a verdict from the nine battleground states whose votes will determine which man can piece together the 270 electoral votes needed for victory.
Those battleground states are Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia, and Wisconsin.
Below are the poll closing times in CST:
Romney is making a late dash to Ohio and Pennsylvania on Tuesday in pursuit of a winning formula. Obama is using a dozen radio and TV interviews to keep his closing arguments fresh in voters' minds.
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