Share of popular votes for major parties in US presidential elections 1860-2020

Since the 1860 election, U.S. presidential elections have been dominated by candidates affiliated with the Democratic and Republican parties. While the electoral votes decide the winner of the election, these are generally decided by the winner of the popular vote in each state (or district), and the winner of the nationwide popular vote does not always go on to win the electoral vote. Interestingly, there have been a number of occasions where the winner of the popular vote did not go on to win the electoral vote, for example in the 2016 election, or, most famously, in 2000.

Share of popular votes for the Democratic and Republican parties in presidential elections from 1860 to 2020

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Sources

Release date

November 2020

Region

United States

Survey time period

1860 to 2020

Supplementary notes

*Provisional data, as of November 16,2020.

**Former President Theodore Roosevelt ran as a Progressive Party (Bull Moose) candidate and took more votes than the Republican candidate, President William Howard Taft.

***Technically, Abraham Lincoln ran on the National Union ticket, which was a rebranding of the Republican Party during the Civil War.

****For the Southern Democratic candidate, John C. Breckenridge, only. Two other candidates took a noticeable portion of the votes.

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Statistics on "History of U.S. presidential elections 1789-2016"

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