Presidential Elections 1972 - 2008
Maps that show which party won each state in any given presidential election are ubiquitous in American history textbooks. They can be powerful visualizations, showing some broad regional patterns in voting. Yet by reducing tens of thousands or even many millions of votes in each state to a single value they wash away much of the complexity of the spatial patterns in American voting. To reveal and examine that complexity, in Voting America we present a number of additional maps that present a more nuanced, granular, and subtle picture--or rather pictures--of the ways American voters have cast their ballots in US presidential elections during the past two centuries.
Barack Obama (Democrat) defeated John McCain (Republican), winning 365 electoral votes and 52.9% of the popular vote.
George W. Bush (Republican) defeated John Kerry (Democrat), winning 286 electoral votes and 50.7% of the popular vote.
George W. Bush (Republican) defeated Al Gore (Democrat). Although Gore won the popular vote, Bush won the Electoral College after a contentious fight, marked by recounts in Florida.
Bill Clinton (Democrat) defeated Bob Dole (Republican) and Ross Perot (Reform).
Bill Clinton (Democrat) defeated George H. W. Bush (Republican) and Ross Perot (Independent). Perot drew more votes than any other third-party candidate since Theodore Roosevelt's campaign in 1912.
George H. W. Bush (Republican) defeated Michael Dukakis (Democrat), winning 53 percent of the popular vote.
Ronald Reagan (Republican) defeated Walter Mondale (Democrat). Reagan won 58 percent of the popular vote, and carried every state except Minnesota in the Electoral College.
Ronald Reagan (Republican) defeated Jimmy Carter (Democrat), winning 50.7 percent of the popular vote.
Jimmy Carter (Democrat) defeated Gerald Ford (Republican), winning 50.1 percent of the popular vote.
Richard Nixon (Republican) defeated George McGovern (Democrat). Nixon won reelection with 60 percent of the vote, only to resign the presidency in 1974 over the Watergate controversy.