Presidential candidates making last stops in NC before election - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Presidential candidates making last stops in NC before election

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

In the weeks leading up to Tuesday's election, voters in North Carolina have become accustomed to the presidential candidates, as well as their families and political allies, making frequent campaign stops in the Tar Heel State.

Political experts are calling North Carolina an important battleground state.

"North Carolina could help potentially decide not only the presidency, but control of the U.S. Senate," said Dr. Michael Bitzer.

Each election, experts emphasize how crucial winning states like Florida and Ohio are to get the electoral votes necessary for the presidency.

However, North Carolina has been seen as another state that could help seal up the win on election night.

In the past week, Republican vice presidential nominee Mike Pence and President Barack Obama have made campaign stops for Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, respectively.

Campaigning in North Carolina won't stop now that early voting is over.

Hillary Clinton, Tim Kaine, and Donald Trump all will be in North Carolina Monday. Clinton and Trump will be in Raleigh, while Kaine will stump in Charlotte.

Both campaigns have focused on getting people out to early vote. More than 3 million voters have done so, about 13 percent ahead of 2012 early voting figures.

In 2012, Mitt Romney won North Carolina, but still lost the election. Experts say North Carolina is a must-win for Trump.

"If the Democrats can take North Carolina, I see no viable path for Donald Trump," Bitzer said.

Polls will be open from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Copyright 2016 WBTV. All rights reserved.

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