Congress is scheduled to count the electoral votes for the election of 2016 today, and then officially announce the winner of the election (assumed to be Donald Trump), who will take office on January 20th. Since today is the day electoral votes truly count, I offer the following:
Presidents Who Won Election While Losing the Electoral Votes of Their Home States
The election of 2016 was the 58th quadrennial election of a President of the United States. In those 58 elections, it is a rarity for someone to win the election while losing the electoral votes of his home state.
1844: James Polk defeated Henry Clay, 170-105. Clay won the votes of his home state of Kentucky and Polk’s home state of Tennessee.
1916: Sitting President Woodrow Wilson re-elected over Charles Evans Hughes, 277-254. Wilson lost his home state of New Jersey and Hughes’s home state of New York (both of which he’d won four years earlier).
1968: Former Vice President Richard Nixon defeats sitting Vice President Hubert Humphrey and George Wallace: Nixon, 301; Humphrey, 191; Wallace, 46. Nixon was a Californian, but had been living in New York since 1962. Nixon won California, but Humphrey won New York.
2016: Donald Trump defeats Hillary Clinton, 304-227. Both lived in New York at the time of the election, but only Trump was born in the state. Clinton won New York and her birth state of Illinois; Trump won Arkansas, where Clinton had been living when her husband was elected President in 1992.
Other Presidents Who Lost the Electoral Votes of Their Home States
1840: Martin Van Buren lost his bid for re-election to William Henry Harrison, 234-60. Van Buren lost his home state of New York, which he’d won four years earlier. In 1848, Van Buren ran again, receiving no electoral votes to Zachary Taylor’s 163 and Lewis Cass’s 127. New York voted for Taylor.
1856: Former President Millard Fillmore won 8 electoral votes, coming in third, behind James Buchanan (174 electoral votes) and John C. Fremont (114). Fillmore won the votes of Maryland, but lost his home state of New York (which voted for Fremont).
1888: Sitting President Grover Cleveland lost his bid for re-election to Benjamin Harrison, 233-168. Cleveland lost his home state of New York, which he’d won four years earlier.
1892: Sitting President Benjamin Harrison lost his bid for re-election to former President Grover Cleveland, 277-145 (with 22 electoral votes going to James B. Weaver). Harrison lost his home state of Indiana, which he’d won four years earlier. Cleveland also won back New York.
1912: Woodrow Wilson defeated sitting President William Howard Taft and former President Theodore Roosevelt (Wilson, 435; Roosevelt, 88; Taft, 8). Wilson won his home state of New Jersey, Roosevelt’s home state of New York, and Taft’s home state of Ohio.