The Great Lakes are in North America, straddling the border of both the United States and Canada.
Lake Superior is bordered by the states of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, and the province of Ontario. Lake Michigan is the only lake that is fully contained within the United States, bordered by Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, and Indiana. Lake Erie is bordered by the states of Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York and the province of Ontario.
Government map showing surrounding states and provinces and major cities of Great Lakes Basin provinces.
Relief elevation Map of OntarioElevation map showing land elevation and highest mountains of Ontario province.
Regional transportation Map of Great Lakes PortsTransportation map showing Great Lakes ports and St. Reference government Map of OntarioGovernment map showing provincial boundaries and main towns and cities of Ontario province.
Printable black and white Map of OntarioBlack And White map showing water features and political boundaries of Ontario province. Political color Map of OntarioColor map showing political borders and major cities of Ontario province. Outline province Map of OntarioProvince map showing main cities and provincial capital of Ontario province.

ONE of the better ads in this campaign is the National Rifle Association's poodle poster, which pops up in gun shops around the Great Lakes. In past elections, Wisconsin and Minnesota, both left-leaning states, would have been considered a bonus for Mr Bush. Revealingly, Mr Bush sometimes downplays Iraq in those states too; but the president is not without his own issues.
But the race hinges disproportionately on a cluster of northern states hugging, or touching, the five Great Lakes (see map).
But with the growing clout of suburban voters, both states have become more conservative—and Mr Bush may well need to win one of them to make up for Republican states elsewhere that are trending Democratic, such as New Hampshire.
New York and Illinois, the two most Democratic states, are the only ones not to be at least three-quarters white.
The Great Lakes swing states may lean to the left on trade, but they are often socially conservative. The notion that a Massachusetts liberal with a rich feminist wife is not really “one of us” will be a crucial part of the Republican pitch in the states around the Great Lakes. If you stood on the moon, you could see the lakes and recognize the familiar wolf head shape of Lake Superior, or the mitten bounded by lakes Michigan, Huron and Erie. The original source of this Regional government Map of Great Lakes Basin is: Natural Resources Canada. Not all the states are swing states: Indiana is solidly Republican, New York and Illinois are solidly Democratic, and, this year at least, Michigan looks pretty good for Mr Kerry.

An analysis by Nielsen and the University of Wisconsin Advertising Project shows that between September 24th and October 7th, the period around the nationally televised debates, six of the top ten television markets for presidential advertising were in the Great Lakes area: Green Bay, Cleveland, Toledo, Columbus, Grand Rapids and Harrisburg. In states with ageing populations, such as Pennsylvania, he returns repeatedly to health care. But as long as many Great Lakes voters take a dim view of their own prospects, that may not be enough to see the president to victory. This heartland—whether heavy manufacturing in Detroit, Cleveland and Green Bay or farming in Minnesota and Wisconsin—has seen wrenching changes in recent decades. Lawrence River is bordered by the state of New York and the provinces of Ontario and Québec. You can save it as an image by clicking on the downloadable map to access the original Great Lakes Basin Regional Map file. Together, these four states offer 61 electoral-college votes—or roughly half the total for states considered up for grabs. Factory jobs have moved offshore or to lower-wage states further south, unions have seen their membership decline, family farmers have sold out to big agribusinesses and moved to the suburbs. The map covers the following area: provinces, Great Lakes Basin, showing major cities and surrounding states and provinces of Great Lakes Basin.

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