The county may have a population of only 125,000, but it has an outsized importance in presidential elections. "Since 1960, [Wood County] has predicted every election except for one," says Wood County GOP Chairman Matt Reger. "I think that it is a microcosm of Ohio, which in some parts is a microcosm of the United States." Wood County has an even distribution of Democrats and Republicans who are registered, Reger says, though Republicans have a light advantage. It also has a large degree of independents — almost 60,000 — which is more than the number of registered Democrats and Republicans there combined. This makes the county as important in the state as Ohio is nationally, meaning as Wood County goes, so does Ohio. This is especially critical for Mitt Romney, because no Republican has ever won the White House without also winning Ohio.
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