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J.D. Pooley, Associated Press
John DeNoyelles, from Flint, Texas, who said he is in Ohio trying to network to find a job, holds a sign in support of Mitt Romney along Main Street in Bowling Green, Ohio Monday Nov. 5, 2012.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ever urgent as the clock runs down, Barack Obama's and Mitt Romney's teams have been pressing voters to get to the polls while thousands who are already there have waited in long lines for their final chance to avoid the Election Day crush.

In Columbus, Ohio, more than 1,000 murmuring voters were winding through a maze in a former department store on the city's west side.

In Cleveland, the atmosphere was festive. Music was blaring across the street from the county elections board office. Hot dog vendors, campaign button sellers, even the Rev. Jesse Jackson sought to woo the crowd.

Those are just two of the many scenes being played out across the country during the final acts of the 2012 presidential campaign.