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Washington: A Voting Dichotomy

State Often Goes to the Dems, Despite Heavy Support for Republicans in the West

The Democrats likely are counting on the Pacific Northwest, including Washington, as faithful blue states this political season. The aptly named Evergreen State gave Sen. Barack Obama a decisive victory over Hillary Clinton in February. He walked away with 68 percent of the vote.

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In Washington the western portion leans to the left, but the eastern part of the state favors a more conservative prospective.
(ABC News Photo Illustration)

For Republican Sen. John McCain, the results weren't as dominate, though he ultimately did come away with a win.

The place that gave birth to grunge culture and put the final coffin nail in 1980s hair metal has an intriguing balance. Washington often is seen as divided politically along the Cascade Mountains, with the western part of the state being more liberal and the eastern part more conservative.

And though the state's delegates went with the Democratic candidate in the last four presidential elections, a closer look at the returns from 2004 shows that the eastern portion heavily favored George W. Bush in his re-election campaign.

Polls indicate the nation's 42nd state is leaning heavily Democratic in the Race for '08, and will probably will give its 11 electoral votes to Obama this November — thanks in part to larger, liberal metropolitan areas like Seattle.

With its heavy involvement in the technology sector — Washington is home to Microsoft, online giant Amazon.com, game maker Nintendo and aircraft giant Boeing — the economy could be a major player in the fight for votes in Washington.

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