United States presidential election in Florida, 2008

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United States presidential election in Florida, 2008
Florida
2004 ←
November 4, 2008
→ 2012

  Obama portrait crop.jpg John McCain official portrait with alternative background.jpg
Nominee Barack Obama John McCain
Party Democratic Republican
Home state Illinois Arizona
Running mate Joe Biden Sarah Palin
Electoral vote 27 0
Popular vote 4,282,367 4,046,219
Percentage 50.91% 48.10%

Florida Presidential Election Results 2008.svg

County Results
  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 Florida 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 27 representatives, or electors to the Electoral College, who voted for President and Vice President.

Florida was won by Democratic nominee Barack Obama by a 2.8% margin of victory. Prior to the election, most news organizations considered this a toss-up, or swing state, as it was heavily targeted by both campaigns. Despite the fact that polls showed McCain in the lead throughout much of 2008, Obama took the momentum in the two months before Election Day. Obama ended up winning the state with 51% of the vote, including wins in four counties that Bush won in 2004.

Primaries[edit]

Campaign[edit]

Republican George W. Bush of Texas carried The Sunshine State by a convincing margin of 5% in 2004 against Democrat John Kerry,[1] a much greater margin than in 2000 when Bush controversially won the state's 25 electoral votes against Democrat Al Gore of Tennessee by 537 votes.[2]

Early polls showed Barack Obama faring poorly in Florida. Barack Obama did not campaign there during the primary season and argued against seating its delegates for the Democratic convention, generating unfavorable media attention. Moreover, Florida's demographics did not favor him. A haven for retirees, Florida lacked many of the younger voters who passionately supported the Democratic nominee. Thus, in early 2008, opinion polling showed Republican John McCain leading most polls, sometimes by double-digits.[3]

Near the end of September, however, when the financial crisis of 2008 became a more potent election issue, Obama proceeded to take the lead in most of the polls.[3] Florida was especially hard hit by the economic shock. It was a hotspot of new homebuilding and suffered tremendously from the subprime lending collapse. In addition, the state was full of retirees depending on 401ks; these were badly hurt by the stock market's fall.

Predictions[edit]

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

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

Polling[edit]

The 3 poll averages showed McCain leading throughout most of the presidential election season, until the very last month of October. The final 3 polls had Obama leading 49% to 48% with undecided voters to decide the election.[18]

Fundraising[edit]

McCain raised $14,826,093. Obama raised $19,963,592.[19]

Advertising and visits[edit]

Obama and his interest groups spent $36,990,591 in the state. McCain and his interest groups spent $17,133,501.[20] The Democratic ticket visited the state 12 times to the Republicans' 11 times.[21]

Analysis[edit]

Obama won the state and its 27 electoral votes on Election Day by a margin of about 2.82%.[22] Obama held a consistent lead for most of the night as returns came in, but the networks avoided calling the state for Obama until the conservative northwestern portion, most of which is in the Central Time Zone, began reporting its returns.

Obama's win in the state can be attributed to, according to exit polling, winning 96% of the African-American vote, 57% of Latino voters, and 52% among Independents.[23]

Big wins in the Orlando and Tampa Bay areas, where George W. Bush won in 2004, contributed to Obama's victory. In the former, Obama carried Orange County (which includes Orlando) by 19 points - the best margin for a Democratic candidate in 64 years.[24] Before Al Gore and John Kerry narrowly won it, Orange County hadn't supported a Democratic presidential nominee since Franklin D. Roosevelt's last run for president in 1944. Obama also carried Osceola County near Orlando by a 20-point margin (Bush won it in 2004 52%-47%).[24] His strong performance in Central Florida more than likely helped the Democrats win two U.S. House seats in that region.

In the Tampa Bay region, Obama carried Hillsborough County, home to Tampa, by a 7-point margin.[25] Obama also won Pinellas County, home to St. Petersburg, by a 53%-45% margin.[25] Bush had narrowly carried the county by about 0.1% in 2004.[26]

Like most Democratic candidates, Obama dominated South Florida, winning Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties by comfortable margins. The vote from Miami-Dade came in very late in the evening, stopping the major networks from calling the state for Obama earlier in the evening, although Obama maintained a lead of at least 125,000 votes from the moment polls closed in the state.

On the other hand, John McCain kept the state relatively close, losing by far less than his national average. In northern Florida, a Republican stronghold, McCain won the majority of counties by double-digit landslides. Along the panhandle, McCain routinely took over 70% of the vote.[27] Obama won only a handful of counties - most home to major colleges. Moreover, McCain improved on George Bush's performance in large parts of northern Florida - something he achieved in very few other areas of the country.[27] Obama's sole accomplishment involved Duval County (Jacksonville), where he narrowed George Bush's 61,580-vote victory to a far smaller 7,919 margin.[22][28] Duval County has only supported a Democrat for president once since 1952, when Jimmy Carter carried it in 1976.

In addition, McCain was able to do well along the I-4 corridor in central Florida. This heavily populated, "swingy" region often determines which candidate wins in Florida's statewide elections. In 2008, the Republican candidate won the majority of counties, including heavily populated areas such as Brevard County. However, McCain's poor showing in Orlando severely hurt his position in central Florida.

Democrats also picked up two seats from Florida in the U.S. House of Representatives. Democrat Alan Grayson defeated incumbent Republican Ric Keller for Florida's 8th Congressional District seat while Democrat Suzanne Kosmas ousted incumbent Republican Tom Feeney for Florida's 24th Congressional District seat. Republicans, however, were successful at winning back Republican Mark Foley's old congressional seat in Florida's 16th Congressional District seat when Tom Rooney defeated Democratic incumbent Tim Mahoney by a comfortable margin. At the state level, Democrats picked up two seats in the Florida House of Representatives as well.

Results[edit]

United States presidential election in Florida, 2008[29]
Party Candidate Votes Percentage Electoral votes
Democratic Barack Obama 4,282,367 50.91% 27
Republican John McCain 4,046,219 48.10% 0
Ecology Ralph Nader 28,128 0.33% 0
Write Ins 20,414 0.24% 0
Libertarian Bob Barr 17,220 0.20% 0
Constitution Chuck Baldwin 7,915 0.09% 0
Green Cynthia A. McKinney 2,887 0.03% 0
America's Independent Alan Keyes 2,550 0.03% 0
Socialism and Liberation Gloria LaRiva 1,516 0.02% 0
Boston Tea Charles Jay 797 0.01% 0
Socialist Workers Roger Calero 533 0.01% 0
Objectivist Thomas R. Stevens 419 0.00% 0
Socialist Brian Moore 405 0.00% 0
Prohibition Gene Amondson 293 0.00% 0
Independent Ron Paul 174 0.00% 0
Independent None of these candidates 23 0.00% 0
Independent Bradford Lyttle 1 0.00% 0
Totals 8,411,861 100.00% 27
Voter turnout (Voting age population) 59.8%

Results breakdown[edit]

By county[edit]

County Obama% Obama# McCain% McCain# Others% Others#
Alachua 60.0% 75,565 38.5% 48,513 1.5% 1,889
Baker 21.0% 2,327 78.2% 8,672 0.8% 88
Bay 29.1% 23,653 69.7% 56,683 1.3% 1,030
Bradford 29.3% 3,430 69.5% 8,136 1.2% 137
Brevard 44.2% 127,260 54.5% 157,589 1.3% 3,718
Broward 67.0% 492,640 32.3% 237,729 0.6% 4,722
Calhoun 29.1% 1,821 69.4% 4,345 1.6% 98
Charlotte 45.7% 39,031 52.9% 45,205 1.5% 1,263
Citrus 41.1% 31,460 57.1% 43,706 1.8% 1,343
Clay 28.2% 26,697 70.9% 67,203 0.9% 823
Collier 38.3% 54,450 60.8% 86,379 0.8% 1,159
Columbia 32.5% 9,171 66.2% 18,670 1.3% 374
DeSoto 43.1% 4,383 55.4% 5,632 1.5% 149
Dixie 26.4% 1,925 71.2% 5,194 2.4% 174
Duval 48.6% 202,618 50.5% 210,537 0.8% 3,538
Escambia 39.8% 61,572 59.0% 91,411 1.2% 1,891
Flagler 50.2% 24,726 48.7% 23,951 1.1% 540
Franklin 35.3% 2,134 63.1% 3,818 1.6% 97
Gadsden 69.1% 15,582 30.2% 6,811 0.6% 145
Gilchrist 25.5% 1,996 72.3% 5,656 2.1 167
Glades 41.1% 1,381 57.7% 1,938 1.2% 39
Gulf 29.8% 2,149 69.0% 4,980 1.2% 89
Hamilton 42.3% 2,364 56.9% 3,179 0.8% 44
Hardee 34.5% 2,568 64.0% 4,763 1.5% 111
Hendry 45.8% 4,998 52.9% 5,780 1.3% 139
Hernando 47.6% 41,886 51.1% 45,021 1.3% 1,179
Highlands 40.4% 18,135 58.4% 26,221 1.3% 566
Hillsborough 53.1% 272,963 45.9% 236,355 1.0% 5,177
Holmes 16.8% 1,446 81.6% 7,033 1.6% 137
Indian River 42.0% 29,710 56.7% 40,176 1.3% 916
Jackson 35.5% 7,671 63.5% 13,717 1.0% 225
Jefferson 51.2% 4,088 47.6% 3,797 1.2% 93
Lafayette 19.0% 642 79.3% 2,679 1.7% 56
Lake 42.8% 62,948 56.4% 82,802 0.8% 1,176
Lee 44.3% 119,701 54.7% 147,608 1.0% 2,688
Leon 61.6% 91,747 37.4% 55,705 1.0% 1,483
Levy 35.7% 6,711 62.6% 11,754 1.7% 324
Liberty 27.2% 895 71.2% 2,339 1.6% 52
Madison 47.9% 4,270 51.0% 4,544 1.0% 93
Manatee 45.9% 70,034 52.9% 80,721 1.1% 1,712
Marion 43.6% 70,839 55.1% 89,628 1.3% 2,075
Martin 42.7% 33,508 56.2% 44,143 1.1% 871
Miami-Dade 57.8% 499,831 41.7% 360,551 0.5% 4,254
Monroe 51.7% 20,907 46.9% 18,933 1.4% 562
Nassau 27.7% 10,618 71.4% 27,403 1.0% 371
Okaloosa 27.0% 25,872 71.8% 68,789 1.2% 1,120
Okeechobee 39.8% 5,108 58.9% 7,561 1.3% 170
Orange 59.0% 273,009 40.4% 186,832 0.6% 2,870
Osceola 59.4% 59,962 39.7% 40,086 0.9% 877
Palm Beach 61.1% 361,271 38.2% 226,037 0.7% 4,128
Pasco 47.5% 102,417 51.1% 110,104 1.4% 3,068
Pinellas 53.4% 248,299 45.2% 210,066 1.5% 6,787
Polk 46.3% 113,865 52.5% 128,878 1.2% 2,961
Putnam 39.8% 13,236 59.0% 19,637 1.2% 406
Saint Johns 33.7% 35,791 65.3% 69,222 1.0% 1,067
Saint Lucie 55.5% 67,125 43.4% 52,512 1.1% 1,334
Santa Rosa 25.5% 19,470 73.3% 55,972 1.2% 935
Sarasota 49.4% 102,686 49.5% 102,897 1.2% 2,426
Seminole 48.1% 99,335 50.9% 105,070 1.0% 2,021
Sumter 36.0% 17,655 63.0% 30,866 0.9% 462
Suwanee 27.8% 4,916 71.0% 12,534 1.2% 212
Taylor 29.9% 2,803 68.8% 6,457 1.4% 127
Union 24.6% 1,300 74.4% 3,940 1.0% 53
Volusia 52.2% 127,795 46.5% 113,938 1.3% 3,122
Wakulla 36.9% 5,311 61.7% 8,877 1.3% 188
Walton 26.4% 7,174 72.1% 19,561 1.5% 404
Washington 25.6% 2,863 73.2% 8,178 1.1% 126

By congressional district[edit]

Despite the fact that Barack Obama won the popular vote and the state’s 27 electoral votes, John McCain carried 15 congressional districts in Florida, including one district occupied by a Democrat. Obama carried 10 congressional districts including three districts occupied by Republicans.

District McCain Obama Representative
1st 66.66% 32.10% Jeff Miller
2nd 54.27% 44.58% Allen Boyd
3rd 25.99% 73.30% Corrine Brown
4th 61.35% 37.66% Ander Crenshaw
5th 55.57% 43.18% Ginny Brown-Waite
6th 56.04% 42.82% Cliff Stearns
7th 53.20% 45.68% John Mica
8th 46.77% 52.47% Ric Keller (110th Congress)
Alan Grayson (111th Congress)
9th 52.17% 46.57% Gus Bilirakis
10th 47.17% 51.30% Bill Young
11th 33.08% 65.93% Kathy Castor
12th 50.23% 48.84% Adam Putnam
13th 52.05% 46.76% Vern Buchanan
14th 56.76% 42.28% Connie Mack IV
15th 51.15% 47.67% Bill Posey
16th 51.80% 47.11% Tim Mahoney (110th Congress)
Tom Rooney (111th Congress)
17th 12.37% 87.25% Kendrick Meek
18th 48.55% 50.74% Ileana Ros-Lehtinen
19th 33.92% 65.42% Robert Wexler
20th 35.99% 63.25% Debbie Wasserman Schultz
21st 50.83% 48.68% Lincoln Diaz-Balart
22nd 47.59% 51.63% Ron Klein
23rd 16.83% 82.68% Alcee Hastings
24th 50.47% 48.52% Tom Feeney (110th Congress)
Suzanne Kosmas (111th Congress)
25th 50.25% 49.22% Mario Diaz-Balart

Electors[edit]

Technically the voters of Florida cast their ballots for electors: representatives to the Electoral College. Florida is allocated 27 electors because it has 25 congressional districts and 2 senators. All candidates who appear on the ballot or qualify to receive write-in votes must submit a list of 27 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 27 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.[30] 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 27 were pledged to Barack Obama and Joe Biden[31]

  1. Wills Chip Arndt
  2. Wayne Bailey
  3. Fred Balsera
  4. Terrie Bradv
  5. Karl Flagg
  6. Joe Gibbons
  7. Janet Goen
  8. James Golden
  9. Chris Hand
  10. Marlon Hill
  11. Tony Hill
  12. Joan Joseph
  13. Allan Katz
  14. Gena Keebler
  15. Joan Lane
  16. Caren Lobo
  17. Rick Minor
  18. Jared Moskowitz
  19. Angela Rodante
  20. Frank Sanchez
  21. Juanita Scott
  22. Geraldine Thompson
  23. Karen Thurman
  24. Carmen Torres
  25. Kirk Wagar
  26. Enoch Williams
  27. Frederica Wilson

References[edit]

  1. ^ "CNN.com Election 2004". Retrieved 2008-12-14. 
  2. ^ "2000 Presidential General Election Results - Florida". Retrieved 2008-12-14. 
  3. ^ a b Jay Cost. "Florida: McCain vs. Obama". RealClearPolitics. Retrieved 2009-06-21. 
  4. ^ D.C.'s Political Report: The complete source for campaign summaries
  5. ^ Presidential | The Cook Political Report
  6. ^ Adnaan (2008-09-20). "Track the Electoral College vote predictions". The Takeaway. Retrieved 2009-11-14. 
  7. ^ Election Projection: 2008 Elections - Polls, Projections, Results
  8. ^ Electoral-vote.com: President, Senate, House Updated Daily
  9. ^ a b c d Based on Takeaway
  10. ^ POLITICO's 2008 Swing State Map - POLITICO.com
  11. ^ RealClearPolitics - Electoral Map
  12. ^ CQ Politics | CQ Presidential Election Maps, 2008
  13. ^ "Electoral College Map". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-05-26. 
  14. ^ "October – 2008 – CNN Political Ticker - CNN.com Blogs". CNN. Retrieved 2010-05-26. 
  15. ^ "Winning the Electoral College". Fox News. 2010-04-27. 
  16. ^ roadto270
  17. ^ Election 2008: Electoral College Update - Rasmussen Reports™
  18. ^ Election 2008 Polls - Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections
  19. ^ Presidential Campaign Finance
  20. ^ "Map: Campaign Ad Spending - Election Center 2008 from CNN.com". CNN. Retrieved 2010-05-26. 
  21. ^ "Map: Campaign Candidate Visits - Election Center 2008 from CNN.com". CNN. Retrieved 2010-05-26. 
  22. ^ a b "Florida Department of State Division of Elections: November 4, 2008 General Election". Florida Secretary of State. Retrieved 2009-06-21. 
  23. ^ "Local Exit Polls - Election Center 2008 - CNN". Retrieved 2008-12-14. 
  24. ^ a b Dave Leip. "Presidential General Election Map Comparison - Florida". Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S Presidential Elections. Retrieved 2009-06-21. 
  25. ^ a b Dave Leip. "2008 Presidential General Election Results - Florida". Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S Presidential Elections. Retrieved 2009-06-21. 
  26. ^ Dave Leip. "2004 Presidential General Election Results - Florida". Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S Presidential Elections. Retrieved 2009-06-21. 
  27. ^ a b "Election Results 2008". New York Times. Retrieved 2009-06-21. 
  28. ^ "Florida Department of State Division of Elections: November 2, 2004 General Election". Florida Secretary of State. Retrieved 2009-06-21. 
  29. ^ Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections
  30. ^ "Electoral College". California Secretary of State. Retrieved 2008-11-01. 
  31. ^ Florida Certificate of Ascertainment, page 3 of 7.. National Archives and Record Administration.

See also[edit]