How did Bush win Ohio in 2004?

On May 15th, 2005, the Columbus Dispatch published a detailed analysis of the vote that day based on information from the Secretary of State’s office.

It shows that while Kerry won the major cities, except Cincinnati, Bush and the GOP crushed Kerry in the rural areas. They did it by a massive get-to-the-polls push in the 3 days before the election. The GOP targeted likely Bush voters using marketing data.

The other points found that led to the Bush victory in November: it was the first presidential election since the Sept. 11 terrorist attack, the country was at “war”, Bush had a unique relationship with religious conservatives, and state Issue 1 was on the Ohio ballot (banning Gay marriage).

I put together a couple of the articles and the graphs on a mini-site for those interested in reading more: