FILE - This Tuesday, Feb. 15, 2011 file photo shows a discarded sofa in front of an abandoned house in the Windy Ridge subdivision of Charlotte, N.C. In 2008, Obama became the first Dem

 

              FILE - This Tuesday, Feb. 15, 2011 file photo shows a discarded sofa in front of an abandoned house in the Windy Ridge subdivision of Charlotte, N.C. In 2008, Obama became the first Dem
FILE - This Tuesday, Feb. 15, 2011 file photo shows a discarded sofa in front of an abandoned house in the Windy Ridge subdivision of Charlotte, N.C. In 2008, Obama became the first Democrat to take North Carolina since Jimmy Carter in 1976. Pundits called the victory historic, but it came by the slimmest of margins _ just 14,000 votes out of nearly 4.4 million cast. History suggests that if the economy doesn't show substantial improvement in the year before a presidential election, the incumbent loses. And North Carolina's recovery from the "Great Recession" has lagged behind the nation's. (AP Photo/Bob Leverone, File)