Darren Richardson

Nov. 23, 2012

Election Day is over, but the vote-counting goes on.

We know, of course, that President Obama was re-elected on Nov. 6, and barring the whims of potential rogue electors, we know the president should receive 332 electoral votes to Mitt Romney’s 206 when electors meet in their respective states on Dec. 17 to cast their votes for president.

And while we won’t know the final popular vote totals until all 50 states have certified their vote counts before the end of the year, we now know that Romney has surpassed 2008 GOP nominee John McCain’s 2008 popular vote total. As of 9 p.m. PST Friday, Romney had a total of 60,221,746 votes. McCain received 59,948,323 popular votes in 2008.

Through Friday, some 126,830,393 votes had been counted nationally.

Romney trailed Obama by more than four million votes, with Obama’s popular vote total standing at 64,430,488.

When the 2012 vote is expressed as percentages, Obama had 50.8 percent to Romney’s 47.45 percent, while other candidates received 1.75 percent of the vote. Interestingly, Obama’s 50.8 percent represents a higher percentage of the vote than Ronald Reagan received against Jimmy Carter in 1980 or George W. Bush received in his 2004 re-election victory over John Kerry. Both Reagan in ’80 and Bush in ’04 received 50.7 percent of the popular vote.

In 2008, Obama received 69,498,516 votes out of 131,296,985 total votes cast. That came out to 52.93 percent for Obama, 45.65 percent for McCain.

Among third party candidates in 2012, Libertarian Gary Johnson made history by becoming the first Libertarian presidential nominee to receive more than a million votes in an election. As of Friday, Johnson’s popular vote total stood at 1,251,999. However, Johnson was just short of reaching 1 percent of the popular vote, standing at .099 percent.

Among Libertarian presidential candidates, only Ed Clark in 1980 surpassed the 1 percent mark, pulling in 1.06 percent of the national popular vote. Clark had a total of 921,128 votes among the 86,574,904 votes cast in the 1980 presidential election.

Green Party nominee Jill Stein finished fourth in the presidential contest. Her Friday night totals stood at 457,777, second in Green Party history only to Ralph Nader. Nader pulled in 684,871 votes in 1996, the first time he ran as a Green nominee and the first time the Green Party was on the presidential ballot. In 2000, Nader pulled in 2,882,255 votes.

Other vote-getters include the Constitution Party’s Virgil Goode (119,476. .09 percent); Roseanne Barr of the Peace and Freedom Party (63.917, .05 percent); Rocky Anderson of the Justice Party (41,006, .03 percent); and Tom Hoefling of America’s Party (38,442. .03 percent).

All 2012 vote totals are based on numbers posted at 2012 Election page on Wikipedia as of 10:30 p.m. PST on Nov. 23, 2012.


Federal Register, key Electoral College dates for 2012

2012 Election, Wikipedia

2008 Election, Wikipedia

2004 Election, Wikipedia

2000 Election, Wikipedia

1980 Election, Wikipedia