Coloradans light up for Obama, marijuana legalization

Updated
U.S. President Barack Obama speaks at an election campaign rally in Columbus, Ohio, November 5, 2012, on the eve of the U.S. presidential elections.
U.S. President Barack Obama speaks at an election campaign rally in Columbus, Ohio, November 5, 2012, on the eve of the U.S. presidential elections.
REUTERS/Jason Reed

President Obama made history by turning Colorado blue for two consecutive presidential cycles, in a battleground state where he and GOP challenger Mitt Romney were locked in a tie heading into the election.

The NBC News Election Desk projected President Obama as the winner of Colorado with 83% of precincts reporting, where he led Romney with 51% to 47%.

In 2008, Obama became the third Democrat to win over voters in the Centennial State since Harry S. Truman. The last time a Democrat carried the state prior to Obama was Bill Clinton during his first term.

Obama held a sizable lead following the Democratic National Convention when he led Romney by five points. But, after the first debate at the University of Denver, even the president’s most ardent supporters accused him of falling asleep at the wheel and allowing Romney to win the night. By the end of October, Obama’s lead in the polls had diminished to a tie.

Exit polls show that President Obama dominated with Latino voters, claiming 74% of the Latino vote, compared to Romney’s 25%. Romney was, however, able to make great bounds in closing the gender gap in Colorado. In September, polls placed Obama’s lead with women voters in the state at 14 point advantage with 54% to Romney’s 40%. Romney made a strong comeback on the president’s lead— exit polls put both candidates at a tie with women voters at 49%.

Voters in the Rocky Mountain state also passed  marijuana legalization on Election Day. Under Amendment 64, marijuana will be legalized, regulated and taxed in small quantities for adults over the age of 21— similar to alcohol regulation. With 44% reporting, NBC News Election Desk projects the amendment’s passage with 53% support, to 47% opposition.

Coloradans light up for Obama, marijuana legalization

Updated