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Romney-Ryan T-Shirts, Unsold And Unloved, Likely Will Find New Homes In Other Countries

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Online retailer CafePress features Romney-Ryan merchandise at discounted prices. | CafePress

The election is over, but the T-shirts remain.

And now, as President Barack Obama gets back to governing, and besieged voters in swing states reconnect their phones and television sets, businesses stuck with Romney-Ryan T-shirts and merchandise have to decide what to do with their unpopular surpluses.

Even before Election Day, “Romney stuff was harder to move,” Bob Levine, marketing director for St. Louis printer Madco Printing & Advertising, told Bloomberg Businessweek.

In fact, election souvenirs were selling slower this year compared to four years ago, according to CNN. Still, Obama merchandise was three times as popular than his opponent's.

According to Businessweek, Levine sold about 400 $30 T-shirts to the Romney campaign in Missouri. But now, he said he expects the shirts to drop in value.

Unsold clothes often end up being recycled or sold overseas.

Alan Garada, president of World Trade, a merchandise recycler and reseller, told Businessweek he sold about 150,000 unused McCain-Palin T-shirts overseas after the 2008 election.

In the NFL, for example, clothing with Super Bowl "misprints" of losing teams are donated to Christian humanitarian agency World Vision for distribution. Previous donations have gone to Nicaragua, Romania and Zambia, according to MSN.

According to The Guardian, in Sierra Leone, hand-me-downs account for the majority of outfits. The industry has ballooned to $1 billion in Africa since 1990.

Nevertheless, there's still plenty of Romney-Ryan merchandise for sale on sites like Cafe Press, which has started cutting prices on some items. (Incidentally, the website still features some McCain-Palin merchandise.)

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