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romney in michigan Mitt Romney shakes hands with people during a campaign event in front of the Bavarian Inn Lodge on June 19, 2012, in Frankenmuth, Michigan. (Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Election 2012: Republican Primary Officially Ends

With the primary race over, the general election campaign begins

By Andrew Liang | null null , null

After 56 primaries and caucuses, 17 debates, and 10 candidates, the 2012 Republican presidential primary is finally over.

On Tuesday, Utah held the final primary of the 2012 campaign. Republican nominee Mitt Romney won the state with 93.1 percent of the vote. He also claimed all 40 of the state's delegates.

But the election was just a formality. Romney won enough delegates to claim the nomination at the end of May.

Now that the primary race is officially over, attention turns to Election Day on November 6 and the general election campaign between Romney and his Democratic opponent, President Barack Obama.

Romney and President Obama have both been campaigning hard to sway voters. Many polls have both candidates in a virtual tie. Last month, an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll showed Obama leading Romney, 47-43. But a Quinnipiac poll released today shows the President with an edge on Romney in the swing states of Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.

"The president's overall margin is built on his big lead among women, younger voters, and African-Americans," Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, said. "If he can keep those leads in all three of these key swing states through Election Day he would be virtually assured of re-election."

But as Brown admits, "the election is more than four months away, which is a lifetime in politics."

Recent events prove this point.

Two weeks ago, Obama announced a plan to allow some illegal immigrants who were brought to the United States as children to remain in the country. This executive action caused Romney to change how he talks about immigration reform, which is one of the big issues in the election.

This week, both candidates are bracing for the Supreme Court to rule on whether the President's health care reform law, also known as "Obamacare," is constitutional or not. Obama has touted his health care reforms as a key accomplishment of his presidency. Romney has criticized it as bad for the economy and bad for the country. The Supreme Court's decision will have a major impact on how the candidates campaign.

Romney is also working on selecting a running mate for the general election. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, Ohio Senator Rob Portman, Florida Senator Marco Rubio, and former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty are widely thought to be possible candidates for the spot.

"There are only two people in this country who know who are being vetted [to be my running mate] and who are not: And that's Beth Myers and myself," Romney said, speaking about an important aide. "And I know Beth well. She doesn't talk to anybody."

Romney will announce his selection before the Republican National Convention in Tampa. The convention will be held in Tampa, Florida, from August 27-30. Democrats will hold their convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, on September 3-7.

Between now and Election Day, both candidates will battle it out as each tries to present his position on how to guide the nation in a better direction. Stay with Scholastic News and the Scholastic News Kids Press Corps for the latest from the campaign trail.


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