Why Presidential candidates keep coming back to Ohio

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Interesting facts: No Republican has ever been elected President without winning Ohio.  And in the last 100 years, only two Democrats, Franklin Roosevelt and John F. Kennedy, have done it.  So why is Ohio so important?

Xavier University's Dr. Gene Beaupre told FOX19 that Ohio's history as almost always siding with the winner, has helped.  So have the demographics found here,  "For many years it was, and may still be, reflective of a large part of the country so that's one of the reasons why it's an attractive place to go. It's kind of a test market if you will."

In the past, the state's relatively large number of electoral votes were also very important.  But that number has been shrinking.  In 2012, Ohio will have 18 electoral votes, down from the 20 it had in 2008.  Dr. Beaupre says way down the road, that may have an impact on Ohio's importance, but not anytime soon.

As it was in 2008, it is likely to be again in 2012 a swing state.  Ohioans are a divided bunch, with a healthy supply of independent voters who can be swayed, and that, says Dr. Beaupre, will keep candidates coming back to the Buckeye state, "You can't NOT go to Ohio. Maybe in ten years that will change, I don't know but it's certainly still the case now."

Fairvote.org reports that in 2008, Ohio received 26 visits from presidential candidates from the time each party held its convention, to election day.  That's more than any other state.  Ohio is also one of the top 10 states that President Obama has visited since taking office.

So, for Ohio voters, campaign season never really ends.