2000 Democratic Party presidential primaries

← 1996 January 24 to June 6, 2000 2004 →

 
Candidate Al Gore Bill Bradley
Home state Tennessee New Jersey
Delegate count 3,007 522
Contests won 56 0
Popular vote 10,626,568 2,798,281
Percentage 75.8% 20.0%


  Al Gore

Previous Democratic nominee

Bill Clinton

Democratic nominee

Al Gore

From January 24 to June 6, 2000, voters of the Democratic Party chose its nominee for president in the 2000 United States presidential election. Incumbent Vice President Al Gore was selected as the nominee through a series of primary elections and caucuses culminating in the 2000 Democratic National Convention held from August 14 to 17, 2000, in Los Angeles, California, but he went on to lose the Electoral College in the general election against Governor George W. Bush held on November 7 of that year, despite winning the popular vote by 0.5%.

Primary race overview

The apparent front runner, incumbent Vice President Al Gore of Tennessee, only faced one major candidate in the primaries, U.S. Senator Bill Bradley of New Jersey. Both men campaigned to succeed term-limited incumbent Bill Clinton. During the course of the five-month primary season, Gore managed to win every single primary contest over his opponent, and easily won the party's nomination for the 2000 election.

Serious early speculation surrounded Bill Bradley, a U.S. Senator and former NBA player, who had long been considered a potential Democratic contender for the presidency. In December 1998, Bradley formed a presidential exploratory committee and began organizing a campaign.[1] Gore, however, had been considered the favorite for the Democratic nomination as early as 1997, with the commencement of President Clinton's second term.[2] Though numerous candidates for the Democratic nomination tested the waters, including Senator John Kerry, Governor Howard Dean,[3] Representative Richard Gephardt, and Reverend Jesse Jackson,[4] only Gore and Bradley ultimately entered the contest.

Bradley campaigned as the liberal alternative to Gore, taking positions to the left of him on issues like universal health care, gun control, and campaign finance reform. On the issue of taxes, Bradley trumpeted his sponsorship of the Tax Reform Act of 1986, which had significantly cut tax rates while abolishing dozens of loopholes.[5] He voiced his belief that the best possible tax code would be one with low rates and no loopholes, but he refused to rule out the idea of raising taxes to pay for his health care program.

On public education, Bradley pushed for increased federal funding for schools under Title I, as well as the expansion of the Head Start program.[6] He further promised to bring 60,000 new teachers into the education system annually by offering college scholarships to anyone who agreed to become a teacher after graduating.[7] Bradley also made child poverty a significant issue in his campaign. Having voted against the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Act, better known as the "Welfare Reform Act," which, he said, would result in even higher poverty levels,[5] he promised to repeal it as president. He also promised to address the minimum wage, expand the Earned Income Tax Credit, allow single parents on welfare to keep their child support payments, make the Dependent Care Tax Credit refundable, build support homes for pregnant teenagers, enroll 400,000 more children in Head Start, and increase the availability of food stamps.[7]

Although both Gore and Bradley showed comparable success in terms of fund-raising, Bradley lagged behind Gore in many polls from the start and never gained a competitive position. Despite the late endorsement of the Des Moines Register,[8] Bradley went on to be defeated in the Iowa Caucus; Gore garnered 62.9% of the votes, while Bradley received only 36.6%.[9] Gore won the primary competition in New Hampshire as well, though by a significantly smaller margin, receiving 49.7% to Bradley's 46.6%. After a resounding defeat on Super Tuesday, with Bradley failing to carry the majority of delegates in a single state, he withdrew from the race on March 9.[10]

Since the advent of the modern presidential primary system began in 1972, Gore remains the only non-incumbent (Republican or Democrat) to sweep all the nominating contests held in a given year.

Candidates

Nominee

Candidate Most recent office Home state Campaign Popular vote Contests won Running mate
Al Gore Vice President of the United States
(1993–2001)

Tennessee

(Campaign)
Secured nomination:
March 14, 2000

10,885,814

(75.4%)

56 Joe Lieberman

Withdrew during primaries or convention

Candidate Most recent office Home state Campaign Popular vote Contests won
Bill Bradley U.S. Senator from New Jersey

(1979–1997)

New Jersey

(Campaign)

Withdrew: March 9, 2000

3,027,912

(21.0%)

0

Declined

Polling

Source[16] Date Al Gore Bill Bradley Jesse Jackson Dick Gephardt John Kerry Bob Kerrey Paul Wellstone
Gallup Sep. 6–7, 1997 49% 13% 15% 7% 5% 4% 0%
Gallup May 8–10, 1998 51% 8% 12% 7% 2% 3% 1%
Gallup Oct. 23–25, 1998 41% 15% 11% 14% 4% 4% 1%
Gallup Jan. 8–10, 1999 47% 12% 11% 13% 5% - 1%
Gallup Mar. 12–14, 1999 58% 21% 15% - - - -
Gallup Apr. 13–14, 1999 54% 34% - - - - -
Gallup Apr. 30 – May 2, 1999 66% 23% - - - - -
Gallup May 23–24, 1999 59% 30% - - - - -
Gallup Jun. 4–5, 1999 63% 28% - - - - -
Gallup Jun. 25–27, 1999 64% 28% - - - - -
Gallup Aug. 16–18, 1999 58% 31% - - - - -
Gallup Sep. 10–14, 1999 63% 30% - - - - -
Gallup Oct. 8–10, 1999 51% 39% - - - - -
Gallup Oct. 21–24, 1999 57% 32% - - - - -
Gallup Nov. 4–7, 1999 58% 33% - - - - -

Results

Statewide

2000 Democratic primaries and caucuses[17]
Date Pledged delegates Contest Bill Bradley Al Gore Lyndon LaRouche
January 24 47 Iowa caucuses 36.60%
(18)
62.85%
(29)
0.00%
February 1 22 New Hampshire primary 45.59%
(9)
49.73%
(13)
0.08%
February 5 0 Delaware primary 40.18% 57.24% 2.59%
February 29 0 Washington primary 34.21% 65.25% 0.54%
March 7
(1,310)

(Super Tuesday)

6 American Samoa caucuses ?%
(1)
?%
(3)
3.03%
367 California primary 18.19%
(62)
81.21%
(305)
0.60%
54 Connecticut primary 41.37%
(24)
55.60%
(30)
3.03%
77 Georgia primary 16.18%
(12)
83.82%
(65)
-
20 Hawaii caucuses ?%
(2)
?%
(20)
?%
18 Idaho caucuses ?%
(4)
?%
(14)
?%
23 Maine primary 41.26%
(10)
54.02%
(13)
0.32%
68 Maryland primary 28.45%
(19)
67.32%
(49)
0.89%
93 Massachusetts primary 37.17%
(35)
59.77%
(58)
0.37%
75 Missouri primary 33.56%
(24)
64.62%
(51)
0.34%
243 New York primary 326,417

33.46%
(85)

639,417

65.62%
(158)

0.92%
14 North Dakota caucuses ?%
(2)
?%
(12)
?%
146 Ohio primary 24.70%
(37)
73.61%
(109)
1.69%
22 Rhode Island primary 40.35%
(9)
56.92%
(13)
0.42%
15 Vermont primary 43.89%
(6)
54.33%
(9)
0.72%
75 Washington caucuses 28.20%
(22)
68.39%
(53)
0.54%
March 9 43 South Carolina caucuses 1.78% 91.79%
(43)
0.0%
March 10
(75)
51 Colorado primary 23.29%
(7)
71.43%
(44)
0.93%
24 Utah primary 20.14%
(3)
79.86%
(21)
-
March 11
(250)
47 Arizona primary 18.88%
(7)
77.89%
(40)
1.66%
129 Michigan caucuses 16.27%
(9)
82.74%
(120)
0.99%
74 Minnesota caucuses ~12%
(2)
~74%
(72)
11.0%
March 12 20 Nevada caucuses 2.22% 88.91%
(20)
0.0%
March 14
(566)
161 Florida primary 18.17%
(17)
81.83%
(144)
-
61 Louisiana primary 19.92%
(7)
72.96%
(54)
3.89%
37 Mississippi primary 8.60% 89.62%
(37)
1.78%
45 Oklahoma primary 25.44%
(7)
68.71%
(38)
5.85%
68 Tennessee primary 5.26% 92.13%
(68)
0.48%
194 Texas primary 16.34%
(12)
80.24%
(182)
3.42%
March 18 3 Guam caucuses ?% ?%
(3)
1.41%
March 21 161 Illinois primary 14.24%
(12)
84.35%
(149)
1.41%
March 25 13 Wyoming caucuses 4.98% 85.44%
(13)
7.28%
March 27 15 Delaware caucuses ?% ?%
(15)
?%
April 1 51 Virgin Islands caucses ?% ?%
(3)
?%
April 2 51 Puerto Rico caucses ?% ?%
(51)
?%
April 4
(238)
161 Pennsylvania primary 20.73%
(21)
74.20%
(139)
4.53%
77 Wisconsin primary 8.77% 88.55%
(77)
1.01%
April 15 79 Virginia caucuses ?% ?%
(79)
?%
April 22 13 Alaska caucuses ?% 68.39%
(13)
?%
May 2

(175)

17 Washington, D.C. primary - 95.90%
(17)
4.10%
72 Indiana primary 21.95%
(10)
74.91%
(62)
3.15%
86 North Carolina primary 18.31%
(13)
70%
(73)
2.11%
May 9

(56)

26 Nebraska primary 26.27%
(5)
69.38%
(21)
3.01%
30 West Virginia primary 18.44%
(3)
72.01%
(27)
1.90%
May 16 47 Oregon primary - 84.86%
(47)
10.86%
May 23

(86)

37 Arkansas primary - 78.47%
(37)
21.53%
(7)
0 Idaho primary 17.4% 75.73% 8.24%
49 Kentucky primary 14.68%
(3)
71.26%
(46)
2.24%
June 6

(217)

54 Alabama primary - 76.74%
(54)
5.58%
17 Montana primary - 77.87%
(15)
-
105 New Jersey primary - 94.89%
(105)
5.11%
26 New Mexico primary 20.57%
(3)
74.63%
(23)
2.32%
15 South Dakota primary - ?%
(15)
?%

Counties carried

  Gore
  Bradley
  Uncommitted
  Tie


  Al Gore
  Bill Bradley
  Uncommitted
  Tie
  No results

Nationwide

2000 Democratic National Primary Results[17]
Al Gore Bill Bradley Lyndon LaRouche Uncommitted Others
Popular Vote 10,626,568 (75.80%) 2,798,281 (19.96%) 323,014 (2.30%) 238,870 (1.70%) 33,418 (0.24%)
Delegates 3,007 (85.16%) 522 (14.78%) 7 (0.06%) 2 -

Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman was nominated for vice president by voice vote. Lieberman became the first Jewish American ever to be chosen for this position by a major party. Other potential running-mates included:

See also

References

  1. ^ Preston, Jennifer (December 5, 1998). "Bradley Takes First Step Toward Presidential Race". The New York Times. Retrieved May 1, 2010.
  2. ^ APPLE, R. W. Jr. (January 19, 1997). "Gore Is Crossing Starting Line for Year 2000". The New York Times. Retrieved May 1, 2010.
  3. ^ "Politics1 - Guide to the Inactive 2004 Democratic Presidential Prospects". Archived from the original on May 15, 2008.
  4. ^ a b "Jesse Jackson Won't Run for President". www.washingtonpost.com. Retrieved November 10, 2021.
  5. ^ a b Dao, James (September 22, 1999). "Moynihan to Endorse Bradley, Favoring Friend Over the Vice President". The New York Times. Retrieved May 1, 2010.
  6. ^ Steinberg, Jacques (February 29, 2000). "THE 2000 CAMPAIGN: THE EDUCATION ISSUE; The Candidates' Homework on Schools". The New York Times. Retrieved May 1, 2010.
  7. ^ a b "Bill Bradley for President 2000 Campaign Brochure". www.4president.org.
  8. ^ "Des Moines Register endorses Bradley". CNN. Archived from the original on March 28, 2009. Retrieved May 1, 2010.
  9. ^ "CNN.com International". CNN. Archived from the original on March 17, 2008.
  10. ^ Dao, James; Kristof, Nicholas D. (March 9, 2000). "THE 2000 CAMPAIGN: THE QUEST; His Early Promise Vanished, Bradley Plans to Quit Today". The New York Times. Retrieved May 1, 2010.
  11. ^ "Warren Beatty For President?". CBS News. August 12, 1999. Retrieved October 9, 2020.
  12. ^ Ellison, Michael (January 3, 2000). "F-words persuade Warren Beatty not to run". The Guardian. Retrieved October 9, 2020.
  13. ^ a b c Gray, Jerry (March 29, 1997). "Gephardt Takes to the Road, and Speculation on 2000 Follows". The New York Times. Retrieved April 20, 2013.
  14. ^ "Ted Turner for President?". Sun Sentinel. November 16, 1998. Retrieved October 9, 2020.
  15. ^ "Sen. Paul Wellstone | StarTribune.com". Star Tribune. Archived from the original on June 3, 2013. Retrieved January 16, 2013.
  16. ^ Moore, David. "Gore Leads Bradley Nationally Among Democrats, Except in Northeast". Gallup. Retrieved November 24, 2023.
  17. ^ a b "2000 Presidential Democratic Primary Election Results".