1968 United States presidential election in North Carolina

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Richard Nixon portrait.jpg
George C Wallace.jpg
Hubert Humphrey crop.jpg
Nominee Richard M. Nixon George Wallace Hubert Humphrey
Party Republican American Independent Democratic
Home state New York[a] Alabama Minnesota
Running mate Spiro T. Agnew Curtis LeMay Edmund Muskie
Electoral vote 12 1 0
Popular vote 627,192 496,188 464,113
Percentage 39.5% 31.3% 29.2%

North Carolina Presidential Election Results 1968.svg
County Results

President before election

Lyndon B. Johnson
Democratic

Elected President

Richard Nixon
Republican

The 1968 United States presidential election in North Carolina took place on November 5, 1968, and was part of the 1968 United States presidential election. Voters chose 13 representatives, or electors to the Electoral College, who voted for president and vice president.

Whereas in the Deep South, Black Belt whites had deserted the national Democratic Party in 1948, in North Carolina, where they had historically been an economically liberalizing influence on the state Democratic Party,[1] the white landowners of the Black Belt had stayed exceedingly loyal to the party until after the Voting Rights Act. This allowed North Carolina to be alongside Arkansas the only state to vote for Democrats in all four presidential elections between 1952 and 1964. Indeed, the state had not voted Republican since anti-Catholic fervor lead it to support Herbert Hoover over Al Smith in 1928; and other than that the state had not voted Republican once in the century since the reconstruction era election of 1872. Nonetheless, in 1964 Republican Barry Goldwater won a small majority of white voters,[2] although he was beaten by virtually universal support for incumbent President Lyndon Johnson by a black vote estimated at 175,000. However, with the Voting Rights Act's passage, a reaction set in amongst these, and indeed amongst almost all Southern poor whites outside the unionized coalfields of Appalachia.[3] Former Alabama Governor George Wallace, running in North Carolina under the moniker of the “American Party”, appealed very strongly to most white voters in the eastern half of the state who had become extremely critical of black protesters, student radicals, and rising crime rates.[4]

In early polls it was thought that Wallace would carry the state,[5] but a major swing against him and toward Republican nominee Richard Nixon during October and November saw Nixon win the state, with 39.5% of the vote, whilst Wallace's 31.3% still pushed Democratic nominee and incumbent Vice-President Hubert Humphrey into third on 29.2%. The Alabama segregationist carried almost all of the Piedmont and Outer Banks, and some Black Belt areas where black voter registration was still limited – the very areas that had allowed John F. Kennedy and Adlai Stevenson II to carry North Carolina when other Outer South states went Republican. In these previously loyal regions whites felt President Johnson had moved much too far on civil rights issues, and consequent support for highly segregationist candidates in Democratic primary elections[6] led them naturally to Wallace.[7] Humphrey had very limited support outside of black voters, who were estimated to comprise well over half his total vote in the state,[8] with his share of the white vote totaling less than 20 percent and coming mainly from some traditionally Democratic mountain counties and the university communities of Orange and Durham counties.

Nixon won twelve of the state's electoral votes, while one faithless elector that had been pledged to Nixon voted instead for Wallace. As of the 2020 presidential election, this is the last election in which Wayne County and Lenoir County did not vote for the Republican presidential candidate.[9]

This is one of five states, alongside Georgia, Arkansas, Tennessee, and South Carolina in which Hubert Humphrey came in third place. Alongside Richard Nixon's third place finishes in Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana, it is the penultimate election in which a Republican or Democrat placed third (the final being in Maine and Utah in 1992, where Ross Perot's strong showing forced George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton, respectively, into third place).

Results

1968 United States presidential election in North Carolina[10]
Party Candidate Votes Percentage Electoral votes
Republican Richard Nixon 627,192 39.51% 12
American George Wallace 496,188 31.26% 1
Democratic Hubert Humphrey 464,113 29.24% 0
Totals 1,587,493 100.0% 13
Voter turnout

Results by county

County Richard Milhous Nixon[11]
Republican
Hubert Horatio Humphrey, jr.[11]
Democratic
George Corley Wallace[11]
American
Margin[b]
% # % # % # % #
Mitchell 72.65% 3,778 15.75% 819 11.60% 603 56.90% 2,959[c]
Avery 70.76% 3,197 13.97% 631 15.27% 690 55.49% 2,507
Wilkes 60.29% 11,195 24.22% 4,497 15.49% 2,876 36.07% 6,698[c]
Watauga 55.88% 5,081 32.46% 2,952 11.66% 1,060 23.41% 2,129[c]
Ashe 53.15% 4,894 37.21% 3,426 9.64% 888 15.94% 1,468[c]
Clay 54.94% 1,390 33.48% 847 11.58% 293 21.46% 543[c]
Graham 52.44% 1,570 35.44% 1,061 12.12% 363 17.00% 509[c]
Cherokee 53.18% 3,768 33.90% 2,402 12.91% 915 19.28% 1,366[c]
Yadkin 60.51% 5,885 14.84% 1,443 24.65% 2,397 35.87% 3,488
Jackson 48.14% 3,747 37.98% 2,956 13.88% 1,080 10.16% 791[c]
Catawba 56.33% 18,393 21.36% 6,974 22.31% 7,285 34.02% 11,108
Mecklenburg 52.40% 56,325 28.93% 31,102 18.67% 20,070 23.46% 25,223[c]
Henderson 57.45% 9,334 18.79% 3,053 23.76% 3,861 33.68% 5,473
Madison 49.18% 3,130 34.58% 2,201 16.25% 1,034 14.60% 929[c]
Macon 50.48% 3,295 31.71% 2,070 17.80% 1,162 18.77% 1,225[c]
Yancey 45.21% 2,448 40.90% 2,215 13.89% 752 4.30% 233[c]
Surry 51.19% 9,638 27.02% 5,088 21.79% 4,103 24.16% 4,550[c]
Swain 45.86% 1,494 37.66% 1,227 16.48% 537 8.20% 267[c]
Cabarrus 52.35% 13,226 21.77% 5,501 25.88% 6,538 26.47% 6,688
Caldwell 51.46% 10,433 23.41% 4,746 25.13% 5,095 26.33% 5,338
Alexander 52.03% 4,379 21.79% 1,834 26.18% 2,203 25.86% 2,176
Stanly 51.43% 9,428 22.90% 4,199 25.67% 4,706 25.76% 4,722
Randolph 52.35% 13,450 20.83% 5,351 26.82% 6,892 25.52% 6,558
Forsyth 46.79% 31,623 30.01% 20,281 23.20% 15,681 16.78% 11,342[c]
Burke 48.84% 11,068 25.17% 5,704 26.00% 5,892 22.84% 5,176
Guilford 46.23% 38,996 30.35% 25,604 23.42% 19,751 15.88% 13,392[c]
Lincoln 46.20% 6,188 30.19% 4,044 23.60% 3,161 16.01% 2,144[c]
Alleghany 45.80% 1,695 29.78% 1,102 24.43% 904 16.02% 593[c]
Rutherford 46.11% 7,785 27.38% 4,622 26.51% 4,476 18.73% 3,163[c]
Transylvania 46.85% 4,033 25.67% 2,210 27.47% 2,365 19.38% 1,668
Buncombe 44.23% 21,031 30.76% 14,624 25.01% 11,889 13.48% 6,407[c]
Polk 45.89% 2,550 27.41% 1,523 26.71% 1,484 18.48% 1,027[c]
Rowan 46.79% 15,207 24.84% 8,074 28.37% 9,220 18.42% 5,987
Wake 43.08% 28,928 31.24% 20,979 25.69% 17,250 11.84% 7,949[c]
Davie 49.04% 3,866 19.05% 1,502 31.90% 2,515 17.14% 1,351
Moore 43.74% 5,322 29.45% 3,583 26.82% 3,263 14.29% 1,739[c]
McDowell 46.01% 4,740 24.69% 2,543 29.30% 3,018 16.72% 1,722
Haywood 39.26% 6,205 36.08% 5,703 24.66% 3,898 3.18% 502[c]
Davidson 46.57% 16,678 21.20% 7,594 32.23% 11,544 14.33% 5,134
Carteret 40.23% 4,593 32.95% 3,762 26.81% 3,061 7.28% 831[c]
Sampson 41.44% 6,597 30.13% 4,797 28.43% 4,527 11.31% 1,800[c]
Stokes 45.25% 4,781 22.47% 2,374 32.28% 3,410 12.98% 1,371
Orange 33.30% 6,097 45.70% 8,366 21.00% 3,845 -12.39% -2,269[c]
Gaston 43.77% 18,741 23.59% 10,100 32.64% 13,973 11.14% 4,768
Montgomery 39.67% 3,070 31.14% 2,410 29.19% 2,259 8.53% 660[c]
Dare 40.13% 1,035 27.14% 700 32.73% 844 7.41% 191
Iredell 43.17% 10,557 19.95% 4,878 36.89% 9,021 6.28% 1,536
Chatham 36.22% 3,845 33.27% 3,532 30.51% 3,239 2.95% 313[c]
Union 38.67% 5,290 26.53% 3,630 34.80% 4,761 3.87% 529
New Hanover 37.03% 10,020 28.64% 7,750 34.33% 9,291 2.69% 729
Cumberland 31.95% 9,143 34.72% 9,938 33.33% 9,539 1.39% 399[d]
Durham 29.68% 12,705 38.69% 16,563 31.63% 13,542 7.06% 3,021[d]
Alamance 36.54% 12,310 24.46% 8,241 39.00% 13,139 -2.46% -829
Scotland 28.69% 1,717 37.63% 2,252 33.68% 2,016 3.94% 236[d]
Rockingham 33.46% 8,095 28.00% 6,774 38.54% 9,324 -5.08% -1,229
Harnett 32.97% 5,184 25.49% 4,007 41.54% 6,531 -8.57% -1,347
Tyrrell 22.61% 291 45.14% 581 32.25% 415 12.90% 166[d]
Robeson 23.55% 4,526 42.92% 8,248 33.52% 6,441 9.40% 1,807[d]
Cleveland 32.28% 7,298 25.04% 5,661 42.68% 9,649 -10.40% -2,351
Brunswick 27.52% 2,404 34.03% 2,972 38.45% 3,358 -4.42% -386[d]
Johnston 33.05% 6,764 21.95% 4,492 45.01% 9,212 -11.96% -2,448
Lee 29.32% 2,586 28.61% 2,524 42.07% 3,711 -12.75% -1,125
Pitt 25.41% 5,745 34.04% 7,696 40.55% 9,167 -6.51% -1,471[d]
Wayne 28.79% 5,678 27.06% 5,338 44.15% 8,709 -15.37% -3,031
Hoke 17.88% 812 48.11% 2,185 34.02% 1,545 14.09% 640[d]
Hertford 17.04% 1,125 49.60% 3,275 33.36% 2,203 16.24% 1,072[d]
Onslow 28.08% 3,444 26.75% 3,281 45.18% 5,542 -17.10% -2,098
Washington 21.26% 1,016 39.71% 1,898 39.04% 1,866 0.67% 32[d]
Edgecombe 22.36% 3,198 36.66% 5,243 40.98% 5,861 -4.32% -618[d]
Columbus 26.19% 3,881 28.64% 4,243 45.17% 6,693 -16.54% -2,450[d]
Pamlico 21.46% 745 36.87% 1,280 41.68% 1,447 -4.81% -167[d]
Richmond 22.78% 2,865 33.84% 4,257 43.38% 5,457 -9.54% -1,200[d]
Hyde 20.02% 401 38.39% 769 41.59% 833 -3.20% -64[d]
Person 24.17% 2,138 29.89% 2,644 45.95% 4,065 -16.06% -1,421[d]
Wilson 25.13% 4,053 25.87% 4,173 49.00% 7,903 -23.13% -3,730[d]
Nash 24.08% 4,602 27.64% 5,283 48.29% 9,230 -20.65% -3,947[d]
Chowan 21.60% 798 32.50% 1,201 45.90% 1,696 -13.40% -495[d]
Craven 21.77% 2,991 30.86% 4,240 47.37% 6,509 -16.51% -2,269[d]
Bladen 20.79% 1,746 32.80% 2,754 46.41% 3,897 -13.61% -1,143[d]
Beaufort 23.03% 2,669 27.89% 3,232 49.07% 5,686 -21.18% -2,454[d]
Halifax 20.72% 3,148 32.43% 4,927 46.84% 7,116 -14.41% -2,189[d]
Granville 21.50% 1,837 30.87% 2,638 47.64% 4,071 -16.77% -1,433[d]
Anson 18.39% 1,474 37.05% 2,969 44.56% 3,571 -7.51% -602[d]
Vance 19.84% 2,252 33.94% 3,852 46.21% 5,244 -12.27% -1,392[d]
Lenoir 24.43% 3,844 24.49% 3,853 51.08% 8,036 -26.59% -4,183[d]
Northampton 10.86% 860 51.43% 4,072 37.71% 2,986 13.72% 1,086[d]
Duplin 22.22% 2,724 28.16% 3,451 49.62% 6,082 -21.47% -2,631[d]
Warren 14.79% 796 42.60% 2,293 42.62% 2,294 -0.02% -1[d]
Pasquotank 18.84% 1,430 33.78% 2,564 47.39% 3,597 -13.61% -1,033[d]
Gates 14.58% 406 41.34% 1,151 44.07% 1,227 -2.73% -76[d]
Caswell 17.20% 1,036 35.47% 2,137 47.33% 2,851 -11.85% -714[d]
Pender 17.76% 1,007 34.26% 1,942 47.98% 2,720 -13.72% -778[d]
Martin 14.97% 1,221 38.22% 3,118 46.81% 3,818 -8.58% -700[d]
Bertie 11.38% 811 45.00% 3,207 43.61% 3,108 1.39% 99[d]
Perquimans 15.37% 468 33.60% 1,023 51.03% 1,554 -17.44% -531[d]
Jones 10.72% 361 36.39% 1,225 52.88% 1,780 -16.49% -555[d]
Franklin 14.10% 1,375 29.27% 2,855 56.64% 5,525 -27.37% -2,670[d]
Currituck 14.11% 363 28.69% 738 57.19% 1,471 -28.50% -733[d]
Greene 12.71% 650 30.49% 1,560 56.80% 2,906 -26.31% -1,346[d]
Camden 9.06% 180 35.58% 707 55.36% 1,100 -19.78% -393[d]

Notes

  1. ^ Although he was born in California and he served as a U.S. Senator from California, in 1968 Richard Nixon's official state of residence was New York, because he moved there to practice law after his defeat in the 1962 California gubernatorial election. During his first term as president, Nixon re-established his residency in California. Consequently, most reliable reference books list Nixon's home state as New York in the 1968 election and his home state as California in the 1972 (and 1960) election.
  2. ^ Because Wallace ran second behind Nixon in North Carolina as a whole, all margins given are Nixon vote minus Wallace vote and Nixon percentage minus Wallace percentage unless noted otherwise for the county in question.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac In this county where Wallace did run third behind both Nixon and Humphrey, margin given is Nixon vote minus Humphrey vote and percentage margin Nixon percentage minus Humphrey percentage.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an ao ap In this county where Nixon ran third behind both Wallace and Humphrey, margin given is Humphrey vote minus Wallace vote and perentage magin Humphrey percentage minus Wallace percentage.

References

  1. ^ Phillips, Kevin P.; The Emerging Republican Majority, pp. 219, 303 ISBN 978-0-691-16324-6
  2. ^ See Etsy, Amos; ‘North Carolina Republicans and the Conservative Revolution, 1964-1968’; The North Carolina Historical Review, volume 82, number 1 (January 2005), pp. 1-32
  3. ^ Phillips; The Emerging Republican Majority, p. 226
  4. ^ Eamon, Tom; The Making of a Southern Democracy: North Carolina Politics from Kerr Scott to Pat McCrory, p. 123 ISBN 9781469606972
  5. ^ Lehnen, Robert G.; ‘Stability of Presidential Choice in 1968: The Case of Two Southern States’; Social Science Quarterly, volume 51, no. 1 (June 1970), pp. 138-147
  6. ^ Black, Earl; ‘The Militant Segregationist Vote in the Post-Brown South: A Comparative Analysis’; Social Science Quarterly, volume 54, no. 1 (June 1973), pp. 66-84
  7. ^ Schönberger, Robert A. and Segal, David R.; ‘The Ecology of Dissent: The Southern Wallace Vote in 1968’; Midwest Journal of Political Science, volume 15, no. 3 (August 1971), pp. 583-586
  8. ^ Phillips; The Emerging Republican Majority, p. 280
  9. ^ Sullivan, Robert David; ‘How the Red and Blue Map Evolved Over the Past Century’; America Magazine in The National Catholic Review; June 29, 2016
  10. ^ Leip, Dave (2005). "1968 Presidential General Election Results – North Carolina". US Election Atlas. Retrieved 22 July 2011.
  11. ^ a b c Our Campaigns; NC US President Race, November 03, 1968