United States presidential election in Alabama, 2008

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
United States presidential election in Alabama, 2008
Alabama
2004 ←
November 4, 2008 → 2012

  John McCain official portrait with alternative background.jpg Obama portrait crop.jpg
Nominee John McCain Barack Obama
Party Republican Democratic
Home state Arizona Illinois
Running mate Sarah Palin Joe Biden
Electoral vote 9 0
Popular vote 1,266,546 813,479
Percentage 60.32% 38.74%

Alabama 2008 Presidential Election Results By County.svg

County Results
  Obama—80-90%
  Obama—70-80%
  Obama—60-70%
  Obama—50-60%
  McCain—<50%
  McCain—50-60%
  McCain—60-70%
  McCain—70-80%
  McCain—80-90%

President before election

George W. Bush
Republican

Elected President

Barack Obama
Democratic

The 2008 United States presidential election in Alabama took place on November 4, 2008 throughout all 50 states and D.C., which was part of the 2008 United States presidential election. Voters chose 9 representatives, or electors to the Electoral College, who voted for President and Vice President.

Alabama was won by Republican nominee John McCain with a 21.6% margin of victory. Prior to the election, 17 news organizations considered this a state McCain would win, or otherwise considered it a safe red state. Located in the Deep South, Alabama is one of the most conservative states in the country. Republicans have won every presidential election in Alabama since 1980, and the 2008 election was no exception. John McCain carried 54 of the state's 67 counties and easily prevailed in the Yellowhammer State.

Primaries[edit]

Campaign[edit]

Predictions[edit]

There were 17 news organizations who made state by state predictions of the election. Here are their last predictions before election day:

  1. D.C. Political Report: Republican[1]
  2. Cook Political Report: Solid Republican[2]
  3. Takeaway: Solid McCain[3]
  4. Election Projection: Solid McCain[4]
  5. Electoral-vote.com: Strong Republican[5]
  6. Washington Post: Solid McCain[6]
  7. Politico: Solid McCain[7]
  8. Real Clear Politics: Solid McCain[8]
  9. FiveThirtyEight.com: Solid McCain[6]
  10. CQ Politics: Safe Republican[9]
  11. New York Times: Solid Republican[10]
  12. CNN: Safe Republican[11]
  13. NPR: Solid McCain[6]
  14. MSNBC: Solid McCain[6]
  15. Fox News: Republican[12]
  16. Associated Press: Republican[13]
  17. Rasmussen Reports: Safe Republican[14]

Polling[edit]

Opinion polls taken in Alabama prior to the election consistently showed John McCain to be leading Barack Obama. RealClearPolitics gave the state an average of 56.8% for McCain, compared to 33.5% for Obama.[15] The state was not seriously contested by either campaign.

Fundraising[edit]

John McCain raised a total of $1,846,574 in the state. Barack Obama raised $1,734,629.[16]

Advertising and visits[edit]

Obama spent almost $264,945. McCain and his interest groups spent just $850.[17] Barack Obama, made at least one stop in the state, a brief visit to the Heritage Club for a Democratic Fundraiser in Huntsville, AL [18]

Analysis[edit]

Alabama is one of the most conservative states in the country and one of the most reliably Republican strongholds in presidential elections. Alabama is located in the middle of the Bible Belt, where many people are values voters, they tend to be in opposition to abortion and gay rights. Since 1964, Democrats have carried the state only once, when Democrat Jimmy Carter of neighboring Georgia carried all but one Southern state. Although Democrats still nominally have a majority of registered voters, the Democrats have only seriously contested the state three times since Barry Goldwater carried it in 1964.

At the time of the election, Alabama had a Republican Governor (Bob Riley), two Republicans in the U.S. Senate (Richard Shelby and Jeff Sessions), and five of its seven seats in the U.S. House of Representatives were held by Republicans.

On November 4, 2008, Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama predictably lost by a landslide. However, he performed 2% better in 2008 than John Kerry did in 2004 (both by popular vote and by the number of carried counties). In large part, this can be attributed to high turnout of African American voters in Alabama. Notably, Obama carried Jefferson County, which contains the state's largest city of Birmingham, [19] which last supported the official Democratic candidate for president in 1956. Strangely, many news organizations did not project the state's outcome immediately after the polls closed, possibly due to a wavering African American turnout.

Voting in Alabama, like in other states of the Deep South, was heavily polarized by race. According to exit polls, 98% of African Americans voted Democratic while 88% of Caucasians voted Republican.[20] Obama's 12 percent showing among white voters was easily his worst in the nation, and prevented him from having any realistic chance of carrying the state.[21] Ultimately, McCain won by running up massive landslides in the state's suburban areas; several Birmingham, Montgomery and Mobile suburbs gave McCain over 70 percent of the vote. The old-line Dixiecrats in these areas began splitting their tickets as early as the 1950s; apart from Carter, some of these areas haven't supported a Democrat for president since Adlai Stevenson II in 1956.

Racial polarization was why Obama generally improved on Kerry's performance in Southern Alabama, where more African Americans live. Conversely, Obama did much worse than Kerry in Northern Alabama, where fewer blacks live. Racial polarization was also responsible for Alabama's electoral geography: Obama, like other Democrats, won landslides in the central Alabama Black Belt while losing badly everywhere else.

Results[edit]

Party Candidate Running mate Votes Percentage Electoral votes
Republican John McCain Sarah Palin 1,266,546 60.32% 9
Democratic Barack Obama Joe Biden 813,479 38.74% 0
Independent Ralph Nader Matt Gonzalez 6,788 0.32% 0
Libertarian Bob Barr Wayne Allyn Root 4,991 0.24% 0
Constitution Chuck Baldwin Darrell Castle 4,310 0.21% 0
Write-in candidates 3,705 0.18% 0
Totals 2,099,819 100.00% 9
[22]

Results breakdown[edit]

By county[edit]

County McCain# McCain% Obama# Obama% Nader# Nader% Barr# Barr% Baldwin# Baldwin% Others# Others%
Autauga 17,403 73.6% 6,093 25.8% 46 0.2% 31 0.1% 44 0.2% 24 0.1%
Baldwin 61,271 75.3% 19,386 23.8% 250 0.3% 220 0.3% 170 0.2% 116 0.1%
Barbour 5,866 50.4% 5,697 49.0% 21 0.1% 11 0.1% 26 0.2% 9 0.1%
Bibb 6,262 72.4% 2,299 26.6% 32 0.4% 11 0.1% 26 0.3% 14 0.2%
Blount 20,389 84.0% 3,522 14.5% 127 0.5% 81 0.3% 84 0.3% 64 0.3%
Bullock 1,391 25.7% 4,011 74.1% 2 0.0% 6 0.1% 2 0.0% 3 0.1%
Butler 5,485 56.5% 4,188 43.1% 16 0.2% 7 0.1% 10 0.1% 3 0.0%
Calhoun 32,348 65.7% 16,334 33.2% 248 0.5% 137 0.3% 108 0.2% 67 0.1%
Chambers 8,067 53.9% 6,799 45.5% 29 0.2% 27 0.2% 19 0.1% 15 0.1%
Cherokee 7,928 74.9% 2,306 23.7% 40 0.4% 44 0.5% 39 0.4% 18 0.2%
Chilton 13,960 78.5% 3,674 20.7% 51 0.3% 30 0.2% 48 0.3% 22 0.1%
Choctaw 4,223 53.5% 3,636 46.1% 15 0.2% 5 0.1% 7 0.1% 8 0.1%
Clarke 7,466 55.6% 5,914 44.0% 22 0.2% 16 0.1% 12 0.1% 5 0.0%
Clay 4,984 73.1% 1,760 25.8% 31 0.5% 16 0.2% 12 0.2% 16 0.2%
Cleburne 5,216 80.3% 1,168 18.0% 24 0.4% 49 0.8% 25 0.4% 10 0.2%
Coffee 14,919 74.1% 5,079 25.2% 50 0.2% 36 0.2% 28 0.1% 16 0.1%
Colbert 14,739 59.3% 9,703 39.1% 161 0.6% 73 0.3% 63 0.3% 104 0.4%
Conecuh 3,470 49.9% 3,429 49.3% 25 0.4% 5 0.1% 12 0.2% 2 0.0%
Coosa 3,248 58.4% 2,273 40.9% 14 0.3% 9 0.2% 17 0.3% 2 0.0%
Covington 12,444 78.8% 3,240 20.5% 34 0.2% 29 0.2% 26 0.2% 14 0.1%
Crenshaw 4,319 68.7% 1,938 30.8% 11 0.2% 5 0.1% 12 0.2% 6 0.1%
Cullman 28,896 81.8% 5,864 16.6% 227 0.6% 89 0.3% 150 0.4% 79 0.2%
Dale 13,886 71.9% 5,270 27.3% 60 0.3% 35 0.2% 54 0.3% 15 0.1%
Dallas 6,798 32.6% 13,986 67.1% 23 0.1% 20 0.1% 14 0.1% 11 0.1%
DeKalb 17,957 74.8% 5,658 23.6% 151 0.6% 65 0.3% 64 0.3% 120 0.5%
Elmore 25,777 75.1% 8,301 24.2% 70 0.2% 63 0.2% 59 0.2% 45 0.1%
Escambia 9,375 63.9% 5,188 35.4% 29 0.2% 28 0.2% 34 0.2% 20 0.1%
Etowah 30,595 68.4% 13,497 30.2% 264 0.6% 149 0.3% 124 0.3% 108 0.2%
Fayette 5,883 73.9% 1,994 25.1% 50 0.6% 14 0.2% 16 0.2% 0 0.0%
Franklin 8,048 68.8% 3,469 29.7% 84 0.7% 25 0.2% 44 0.4% 23 0.2%
Geneva 9,417 80.8% 2,134 18.3% 35 0.3% 34 0.3% 32 0.3% 5 0.0%
Greene 876 16.5% 4,408 83.1% 4 0.1% 2 0.0% 10 0.2% 5 0.1%
Hale 3,200 39.0% 4,982 60.7% 10 0.1% 7 0.1% 8 0.1% 7 0.1%
Henry 5,585 64.6% 3,018 34.9% 14 0.2% 8 0.1% 17 0.2% 6 0.1%
Houston 29,254 70.1% 12,225 29.3% 78 0.2% 59 0.1% 76 0.2% 43 0.1%
Jackson 14,083 67.5% 6,374 30.5% 180 0.8% 59 0.3% 100 0.5% 78 0.4%
Jefferson 149,921 47.1% 166,211 52.2% 713 0.2% 793 0.2% 424 0.1% 552 0.2%
Lamar 5,419 76.8% 1,614 22.9% 23 0.3% 5 0.1% 14 0.2% 0 0.0%
Lauderdale 24,068 63.2% 13,329 35.0% 320 0.8% 128 0.3% 145 0.4% 114 0.3%
Lawrence 9,277 63.2% 5,164 35.2% 92 0.6% 40 0.3% 58 0.4% 49 0.3%
Lee 32,230 59.3% 21,498 39.6% 192 0.4% 186 0.3% 95 0.2% 124 0.2%
Limestone 23,598 70.3% 9,536 28.4% 128 0.4% 103 0.3% 118 0.4% 68 0.2%
Lowndes 1,809 24.9% 5,449 74.9% 5 0.1% 3 0.0% 10 0.1% 2 0.0%
Macon 1,396 12.8% 9,450 86.9% 8 0.1% 4 0.0% 12 0.1% 7 0.1%
Madison 86,965 56.9% 64,117 41.9% 481 0.3% 579 0.4% 392 0.3% 365 0.2%
Marengo 5,516 48.1% 5,926 51.7% 16 0.1% 3 0.0% 9 0.1% 1 0.0%
Marion 9,536 77.2% 2,600 21.0% 117 0.9% 36 0.3% 34 0.3% 32 0.3%
Marshall 25,727 77.6% 7,038 21.2% 175 0.5% 82 0.2% 68 0.2% 76 0.2%
Mobile 98,049 54.0% 82,181 45.3% 426 0.2% 327 0.2% 238 0.1% 203 0.1%
Monroe 6,175 54.9% 5,025 44.7% 19 0.2% 6 0.1% 15 0.1% 12 0.1%
Montgomery 42,031 40.1% 62,166 59.4% 167 0.2% 148 0.1% 107 0.1% 124 0.1%
Morgan 36,014 71.3% 13,895 27.5% 223 0.4% 142 0.3% 129 0.3% 139 0.3%
Perry 1,679 27.3% 4,457 72.4% 6 0.1% 7 0.1% 7 0.1% 3 0.0%
Pickens 5,434 54.0% 4,594 45.6% 19 0.2% 3 0.0% 8 0.1% 9 0.1%
Pike 8,004 57.4% 5,879 42.1% 32 0.2% 16 0.1% 13 0.1% 11 0.1%
Randolph 7,175 69.1% 3,064 29.5% 42 0.4% 50 0.5% 38 0.4% 15 0.1%
Russell 8,705 46.0% 10,085 53.3% 41 0.2% 36 0.2% 28 0.1% 20 0.1%
Shelby 69,060 76.2% 20,625 22.8% 228 0.3% 304 0.3% 242 0.3% 184 0.2%
St. Clair 27,649 81.1% 6,091 17.9% 118 0.3% 65 0.2% 114 0.3% 51 0.2%
Sumter 1,731 24.7% 5,264 75.0% 12 0.2% 5 0.1% 6 0.1% 2 0.0%
Talladega 20,112 58.8% 13,779 40.3% 99 0.3% 74 0.2% 92 0.3% 48 0.1%
Tallapoosa 13,116 67.9% 6,063 31.4% 47 0.2% 31 0.2% 32 0.2% 22 0.1%
Tuscaloosa 45,405 57.5% 32,796 41.6% 211 0.3% 186 0.2% 122 0.2% 192 0.2%
Walker 20,722 72.3% 7,420 25.9% 197 0.7% 68 0.2% 105 0.4% 140 0.5%
Washington 5,654 64.4% 3,067 35.0% 22 0.3% 5 0.1% 16 0.2% 11 0.1%
Wilcox 1,868 28.8% 4,612 71.0% 7 0.1% 1 0.0% 2 0.0% 4 0.1%
Winston 8,103 80.8% 1,757 17.5% 74 0.7% 50 0.5% 25 0.2% 22 0.2%

By congressional district[edit]

Republican John McCain carried six of the state's seven congressional districts, including two districts (AL-02 and AL-05) that were carried by Democrats (Bobby Bright and Parker Griffith, respectively) in the U.S. House of Representatives

District McCain Obama Representative
1st Alabama1st.JPG 61.01% 38.38% Jo Bonner
2nd Alabama2nd.jpg 63.42% 36.05% Terry Everett (110th Congress)
Bobby Bright (111th Congress)
3rd Alabama3rd.png 56.21% 43.04% Mike D. Rogers
4th Alabama4th.png 76.32% 22.48% Robert Aderholt
5th Alabama5th.png 60.91% 37.99% Bud Cramer (110th Congress)
Parker Griffith (111th Congress)
6th Alabama6th.PNG 75.91% 23.28% Spencer Bachus
7th Alabama7th.PNG 27.28% 72.36% Artur Davis
[23]

Electors[edit]

Technically the voters of Alabama cast their ballots for electors: representatives to the Electoral College. Alabama is allocated 9 electors because it has 7 congressional districts and 2 senators. All candidates who appear on the ballot or qualify to receive write-in votes must submit a list of 9 electors, who pledge to vote for their candidate and his or her running mate. Whoever wins the majority of votes in the state is awarded all 9 electoral votes. Their chosen electors then vote for President and Vice President. Although electors are pledged to their candidate and running mate, they are not obligated to vote for them.[24] An elector who votes for someone other than his or her candidate is known as a faithless elector.

The electors of each state and the District of Columbia met on December 15, 2008 to cast their votes for President and Vice President. The Electoral College itself never meets as one body. Instead the electors from each state and the District of Columbia met in their respective capitols.

The following were the members of the Electoral College from the state. All 9 were pledged to John McCain and Sarah Palin.[25]

  1. Les Barnett
  2. Will Sellers
  3. Al Blythe
  4. Jack Stiefel
  5. Elbert Peters
  6. Matthew Fridy
  7. Bob Cusanelli
  8. Cam Ward
  9. Jim Wilson

References[edit]

  1. ^ D.C.'s Political Report: The complete source for campaign summaries
  2. ^ Presidential | The Cook Political Report
  3. ^ Vote 2008 - The Takeaway - Track the Electoral College vote predictions
  4. ^ Election Projection: 2008 Elections - Polls, Projections, Results
  5. ^ Electoral-vote.com: President, Senate, House Updated Daily
  6. ^ a b c d Based on Takeaway
  7. ^ POLITICO's 2008 Swing State Map - POLITICO.com
  8. ^ RealClearPolitics - Electoral Map
  9. ^ CQ Politics | CQ Presidential Election Maps, 2008
  10. ^ "Electoral College Map". The New York Times. Retrieved May 26, 2010. 
  11. ^ "October – 2008 – CNN Political Ticker - CNN.com Blogs". CNN. Retrieved May 26, 2010. 
  12. ^ "Winning the Electoral College". Fox News. April 27, 2010. 
  13. ^ roadto270
  14. ^ Election 2008: Electoral College Update - Rasmussen Reports™
  15. ^ "Alabama: McCain vs. Obama". RealClearPolitics. Retrieved May 31, 2009. 
  16. ^ "Presidential Campaign Finance: AL Contributions to All Candidates by 3 digit Zip Code". Federal Election Commission. Retrieved May 30, 2009. 
  17. ^ "Map: Campaign Ad Spending - Election Center 2008 from CNN.com". CNN. Retrieved May 26, 2010. 
  18. ^ "Map: Campaign Candidate Visits - Election Center 2008 from CNN.com". CNN. Retrieved May 26, 2010. 
  19. ^ "AL US President Race". Our Campaigns. Retrieved May 27, 2009. 
  20. ^ "Alabama-Election Results 2008". New York Times. Retrieved 2009-06-10. 
  21. ^ Todd, Chuck and Gawiser, Sheldon. How Barack Obama Won. New York City: Vintage, 2009.
  22. ^ "Certified General Election Results without write-in appendix" (PDF). Secretary of State of Alabama. 2008-11-25. Retrieved 2008-12-05. 
  23. ^ "Presidential Results by Congressional District, 2000-2008". Swing State Project. December 15, 2008. Retrieved May 31, 2009. 
  24. ^ "Electoral College". California Secretary of State. Retrieved 2008-11-01. 
  25. ^ http://www.sos.state.al.us/downloads/election/2008/general/Electors-Pledged-to-Senator-McCain-Republican-Party.pdf