Donald Trump managed to do something on Election Day that had only happened three times before in U.S. history: He won the presidency while losing his home state.
Trump trailed fellow New Yorker Hillary Clinton by more than 1.5 million votes in the contest for the Empire State’s 29 electoral votes. Clinton—who is comfortably ahead in the national popular vote—took her adopted home state with 58 percent of the vote. Despite losing New York, the Republican businessman won an electoral college victory nationally.
The last time this happened was in 1968, when Republican Richard M. Nixon lost New York to Democrat Hubert H. Humphrey and narrowly won the presidency. But Nixon's case hardly counts. While Nixon was a legal resident of New York at the time, he was as Californian as the Beach Boys. Nixon was born and raised in California, served the state in the House and Senate, and ran unsuccessfully for governor just six years earlier. Nixon did carry California in 1968.
Other than the 1968 example, it’s been exactly a century since a winning candidate lost his home state.
In 1916, incumbent Democrat Woodrow Wilson won re-election despite losing his home state of New Jersey and its 14 electoral votes to Republican Charles E. Hughes. While Wilson had previously served as New Jersey's governor and the president of Princeton University, he was born in Virginia—which he carried in the 1916 contest.
Before 1916, you have to go back another 72 years to find another winner who lost back home. In 1844, Democrat James K. Polk was elected president despite losing his home state of Tennessee. It was not the first time that residents of his state had rejected him. After a single term as governor from 1839–1841, he was twice defeated in bids for the office.
Like Trump, Polk was elected on a platform of doing something about the Mexican border. But instead of building a border wall, Polk ended up redrawing the border. He sent in the Army and settled the Mexican-American War by annexing territory that makes up the current states of California, Nevada, New Mexico, most of Arizona and Colorado, and parts of Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Wyoming.
There almost was another case of a home state loser winning the presidency not so long ago. A switch of fewer than 600 Florida votes in 2000 would have handed the presidency to Democrat Al Gore—who lost back home in Tennessee. Like Clinton this year, Gore won the popular vote nationwide, only to lose the electoral college.
All Bloomberg BNA treatises are available on standing order, which ensures you will always receive the most current edition of the book or supplement of the title you have ordered from Bloomberg BNA’s book division. As soon as a new supplement or edition is published (usually annually) for a title you’ve previously purchased and requested to be placed on standing order, we’ll ship it to you to review for 30 days without any obligation. During this period, you can either (a) honor the invoice and receive a 5% discount (in addition to any other discounts you may qualify for) off the then-current price of the update, plus shipping and handling or (b) return the book(s), in which case, your invoice will be cancelled upon receipt of the book(s). Call us for a prepaid UPS label for your return. It’s as simple and easy as that. Most importantly, standing orders mean you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you’re relying on. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.960.1220 or by sending an email to email@example.com.
Put me on standing order at a 5% discount off list price of all future updates, in addition to any other discounts I may quality for. (Returnable within 30 days.)
Notify me when updates are available (No standing order will be created).
This Bloomberg BNA report is available on standing order, which ensures you will all receive the latest edition. This report is updated annually and we will send you the latest edition once it has been published. By signing up for standing order you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you need. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.372.1033, option 5, or by sending us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Put me on standing order
Notify me when new releases are available (no standing order will be created)