General presidential elections take place in the United States every four years. American citizens ages 18 and older can vote in these elections. The voters in each state, by casting votes for president and vice president, choose the electors on the day of the general election. These electors make up the Electoral College, which is the group of citizens designated by the states to cast votes for the president and vice president on behalf of state citizens. The process for selecting electors varies from state to state, but usually the political parties nominate electors at state party conventions or by a vote of the party's central committee. The Electoral College, not the popular vote, elects the president, but the two votes are tied closely.
In the 2012 elections, the 44th President of the United States, Barack Obama, was reelected.
The maps delineating the 2008 election results can be seen in Places in the News site for November 2008.