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The most-clicked Dome posts of 2012 show N.C. in national spotlight

What made the biggest splash on Dome in 2012? The top 5 stories -- in terms of reader clicks --reflect how North Carolina played a major role in the national political scene and the Washington-driven penchant for little news bits that speak to a larger narrative. It doesn't necessarily reflect the biggest news of the political year, but what generated interest in the blogosphere.

Click below to see the top 5.

Democratic convention makes NBC's top political story list

NBC News ranks the Democratic convention in Charlotte at the No. 2 political story in 2012 -- sitting behind only Mitt Romney's "47 percent" remark.

The reason from the story: "This year was another reminder that political conventions do matter in presidential contests. After the Democratic convention in Charlotte, N.C. -- which featured well-received speeches by First Lady Michelle Obama, San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro, former President Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama -- the Dem ticket got a noticeable bump in state and national polls. ...

N.C. native and College Dem president touts the youth vote

Tori Taylor, a Charlotte resident and president of the College Democrats of America writes for Huffington Post: "Young Americans sent a powerful message on November 6: do not underestimate us."

"We are constantly told that our generation is the future of our country, but this statement suggests that our voice does not matter now," she continued. "It puts our interests and needs on a shelf to be dealt with at a later date. We should come back in a few years, when we can really make a difference. The parties will listen then. This is where the Republicans went wrong, and it may cost them an entire generation of voters." Read her full op-ed here.

Morning Roundup: 5 reasons why Obama lost N.C.; McCrory's new challenge

President Barack Obama almost ran the table Tuesday night when it came to battleground states. The lone exception: North Carolina.

Of a dozen competitive states, it was the only one that went from Democratic blue in 2008 to Republican red this year. Why didn’t Obama carry the Tar Heel State? Read five reasons here and see a map of results here.

More political headlines:

--Pat McCrory on Thursday will set foot in the Capitol for the first time as governor-elect. A block north, he will see a major challenge facing his administration: the N.C. General Assembly. 

--The 7th Congressional campaign and the lieutenant governor's race are headed to overtime. A recount looms.

Pat McCrory is the only new GOP governor in the country

Pat McCrory is the only new Republican governor elected Tuesday -- winning in counties where President Obama claimed victory but not the one where he grew up.

McCrory acknowledged his outlier win as he thanked his team during a press conference Wednesday. "I think they ran one of the best campaigns ever in North Carolina history and in this nation," he said. "Our campaign strategy worked and it was obviously ... quite unique in the outcome as compared to the rest of the nation."

One thing Nate Silver got wrong: Wake County

One thing Nate Silver got wrong on election night: Wake County.

"Almost all of Mr. Romney’s advantage can be explained by one county, Wake County, in North Carolina’s Research Triangle," wrote Nate Silver, the New York Times' superstar statistician, at 9:59 p.m. Tuesday.

The problem: Silver apparently didn't notice that the Wake County Board of Elections still hadn't posted early voting results hours after the polls closed. 

Morning Roundup: Republicans win big in North Carolina

Election Night revealed major victories for Republicans in North Carolina. Republicans won the presidential, congressional delegation, governor, lieutenant governor, N.C. Supreme Court races -- as well as took a supermajority in the state House and Senate. All together it represents a conservative shift in N.C. politics, writes Rob Christensen.

Here's a wrap on the coverage:

--President Barack Obama wins re-election. Democrats keep U.S. Senate, House remains GOP. The challenge awaiting Obama.

--Mitt Romney won North Carolina. N.C.'s congressional delegation turns deep red. Congressman Mike McIntyre holds narrow edge, recount next. U.S. Rep. Renee Ellmers wins easy. Election photo gallery.

Voters take their time to make decisions, split tickets

More anedotes from the polls:

Mike Yocum, an information technology professional in Cary, said he only recently decided to vote for President Barack Obama, like he did in 2008. What swayed his decision was Bill Clinton's speech at Pullen Park in Raleigh on Sunday.

"He mentioned that it takes more than four years to fix the economy, and I think he's right," Yocum said. 

Obama needs 2,869 more volunteers on Election Day in North Carolina

President Barack Obama's campaign in North Carolina is looking for 2,869 more volunteers on Election Day. Yes, exactly 2,869 (though they'll probably take more if they can get it).

The number is the subject of an "urgent" email message from Obama campaign field director Jeremy Bird to Obama supporters Monday. It says "shifts available all day."

Final PPP poll: Presidential race tied, McCrory's lead shrinks

The final poll before the election in North Carolina showed the presidential race deadlocked and the governor's race tightening a bit.

President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney are tied at 49 percent, according to Public Policy Polling, a Democratic firm that surveyed likely voters Saturday and Sunday. It's the firm's third poll in a row to show a tie. Obama built an advantage in early voting, the poll found, 54 percent to 45 percent, but Romney will have an advantage with those planning to vote on Election Day, 57 percent to 41 percent.

In the governor's race, Republican Pat McCrory continues to lead -- but his double-digit advantage is shrinking. McCrory received 50 percent to 43 percent for Democrat Walter Dalton.

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