Age, race and income were key factors Tuesday in determining how Alabamians voted for president, according to the results of preliminary exit polling conducted for The Associated Press.
Among the findings:
AGE President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney ran about even among voters 18-24, but Romney's support grew based on the age of voters, with Romney getting about 7 of 10 votes from retirement-age voters.
RACE More than 8 of 10 white voters supported Romney, while more than 9 of 10 African-American voters backed Obama.
SEX Romney got a majority of the votes from men and women, but he fared better with men than women. About 7 of 10 men reported supporting him, while about 6 of 10 women said they did.
INCOME Obama held a slight edge with voters whose family incomes are less than $50,000 annually, but Romney was the choice of the majority of voters with higher incomes.
RESIDENCE Obama and Romney ran close in small towns and rural areas, but Romney led in larger cities and suburbs. The candidates ran about even in the geographic area covering Birmingham, Tuscaloosa, Montgomery and parts of west Alabama, but Romney led in other areas of the state by about a 2-to-1 margin.
ECONOMY About 6 of 10 voters identified the economy as the top issue, and they overwhelmingly favored Romney. Obama was the top choice among voters who identified health care at the top issue.
RELIGION About half of the voters identified themselves as born-again or evangelical Christians, and they favored Romney by about a 9-to-1 margin. Romney was also the favorite among voters who said they attend religious services at least once a week and those who attend occasionally.
DECISION TIME Alabama voters indicated they had made up their minds long before the candidates bombarded them with TV ads. About 8 of 10 said they did so before September.
PARTY AFFILIATION Democrats overwhelmingly voted for Obama and Republicans for Romney. The big break for Romney as picking up more than seven out of 10 votes from independents.
The exit poll of 954 voters was conducted for AP and the television networks by Edison Research in a random sample of 15 precincts statewide.
Results were subject to sampling error of plus or minus 4 percentage points; it is higher for subgroups.
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