United States presidential election in New York, 1920

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United States presidential election in New York, 1920

← 1916 November 2, 1920 1924 →

  Warren G Harding-Harris & Ewing.jpg James M. Cox 1920.jpg EugeneVictorDebs.png
Nominee Warren G. Harding James M. Cox Eugene V. Debs
Party Republican Democratic Socialist
Home state Ohio Ohio Indiana
Running mate Calvin Coolidge Franklin D. Roosevelt Seymour Stedman
Electoral vote 45 0 0
Popular vote 1,871,167 781,238 203,201
Percentage 64.6% 27.0% 7.0%

New york presidential results 1920.svg
County Results

President before election

Woodrow Wilson

Elected President

Warren G. Harding

The 1920 United States presidential election in New York took place on November 2, 1920. All contemporary 48 states were part of the 1920 United States presidential election. New York voters chose 45 electors to the Electoral College, which selected the president and vice president.

New York was won by Republican Senator Warren G. Harding of Ohio, who was running against Democratic Governor James M. Cox of Ohio. Harding's running mate was Governor Calvin Coolidge of Massachusetts, while Cox ran with Assistant Secretary of the Navy Franklin D. Roosevelt of New York. Also running that year was Socialist candidate Eugene V. Debs of Indiana and his running mate Seymour Stedman of Illinois.

Harding won New York State with an overwhelming landslide of 64.56% of the vote to Cox's 26.95%, a victory margin of 37.61%.

Socialist Party candidate Eugene Debs finished with a relatively strong showing for a third party candidate, taking 7.01 percent of the vote, more than twice his national vote share, making New York his third strongest state in the nation. The strongest county for Debs within the state was the New York City borough of the Bronx, where Debs broke fifteen percent of the vote.

With the deeply unpopular Democratic administration of Woodrow Wilson as the backdrop for the 1920 campaign,[1] Warren G. Harding promised a “return to normalcy” that appealed to many voters,[2] while Cox was tied to the policies of the Wilson administration. Harding won nationally in one of the most decisive landslides in American history, and New York, already a fiercely Republican state, went even harder for Harding than the nation, making New York a solid 12 percent more Republican than the national average.[3]

Harding swept every county in the state of New York, winning every upstate county as well as winning every county in the New York City area and Long Island. All but five of New York State’s 62 counties went Republican with more than sixty percent of the vote.

Harding won heavily populated New York City as a whole with a commanding majority, sweeping all five boroughs. Harding received over sixty percent of the vote in the boroughs of Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island, and also won majorities in Manhattan and the Bronx.[4] 1920 was the first of only two occasions in which a Republican presidential candidate has won all five boroughs of New York City since the city’s incorporation in 1898, the other occasion being 1924. Likewise, this was the first of only two occasions (the other being 1924) in which a Republican has won the boroughs of Manhattan and the Bronx since they took their modern forms with the creation of Bronx County in 1914.[5]

Finally, since the city’s incorporation, 1920 remains the only election ever in which a Republican presidential candidate has won an absolute majority of the vote in all 5 boroughs as well as in New York City as a whole. In 1924, Calvin Coolidge would win New York City for the GOP once more, but with a plurality, and beginning in 1928, the city would become a Democratic stronghold that no Republican has since been able to win.[5]

In upstate New York, Harding also won decisive majorities both in rural and urban counties. Harding won over 60% in Albany County, home to the state capital of Albany, as well as in Erie County, home to the city of Buffalo, and in Monroe County, home to the city of Rochester.

1920 made Warren G. Harding one of only three presidential candidates of either party who has been able to sweep every county in New York State, the only others who have done so being Republican Calvin Coolidge in 1924 and Democrat Lyndon Johnson in 1964.

Harding's 64.56% of the vote in New York State remains the highest vote share any Republican presidential candidate has ever received in the state, and the second highest vote share any candidate of either party has ever gotten in the state, beaten only by Democrat Lyndon Johnson’s 68.56% in the Democratic landslide of 1964. Harding’s landslide victory margin of 37.61% remains the widest margin by which any candidate of either party has ever won New York State, beating even Lyndon Johnson's 37.25% in 1964.[6]

United States presidential election in New York, 1920[7]
Party Candidate Votes Percentage Electoral votes
Republican Warren G. Harding 1,871,167 64.56% 45
Democratic James Cox 781,238 26.95% 0
Socialist Eugene V. Debs 203,201 7.01% 0
Prohibition Aaron S. Watkins 19,653 0.68% 0
Farmer-Labor Parley P. Christensen 18,413 0.64% 0
Socialist Labor William Wesley Cox 4,841 0.17% 0
Totals 2,898,513 100.0% 45

See also[edit]


  1. ^ McGerr, Michael E.; The Decline of Popular Politics: The American North, 1865-1928; p. 169 ISBN 0195363760
  2. ^ Carr, Richard and Hart, Bradley W.; The Global 1920s: Politics, Economics and Society, p. 143 ISBN 1317277872
  3. ^ Counting the Votes; New York
  4. ^ Keuchtenberg, William E.; The Perils of Prosperity, 1914-1932; p. 88 ISBN 0226473716
  5. ^ a b Sullivan, Robert David; ‘How the Red and Blue Map Evolved Over the Past Century’; America Magazine in The National Catholic Review; June 29, 2016
  6. ^ Dave Leip’s Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections; Presidential General Election Results Comparison – New York
  7. ^ "1920 Presidential Election Results - New York". Dave Leip's U.S. Election Atlas. Retrieved 2013-07-27.