2008 United States presidential election in Oklahoma

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John McCain 2009 Official.jpg
Obama portrait crop.jpg
Nominee John McCain Barack Obama
Party Republican Democratic
Home state Arizona Illinois
Running mate Sarah Palin Joe Biden
Electoral vote 7 0
Popular vote 960,165 502,496
Percentage 65.65% 34.35%

Oklahoma Presidential Election Results 2008.svg
County Results
McCain
  50-60%
  60-70%
  70-80%
  80-90%


President before election

George W. Bush
Republican

Elected President

Barack Obama
Democratic

The 2008 United States presidential election in Oklahoma took place on November 4, 2008, and was part of the 2008 United States presidential election. Voters chose seven representatives, or electors to the Electoral College, who voted for president and vice president.

Oklahoma was won by Republican nominee John McCain with a 31.3% margin of victory. Prior to the election, all 17 news organizations considered this a state McCain would win, or otherwise considered as a safe red state. A strongly conservative state located in the Bible Belt where evangelical Christianity plays a large role, Oklahoma has trended heavily Republican in recent years. Having voted for the Republican presidential nominee in every election since 1968, Oklahoma once again showcased its status as a Republican stronghold in 2008 with Republican John McCain capturing 65.65% of the vote.[1] It was also the only state where McCain won every county and was even one of the 5 states along with Louisiana, Arkansas, Tennessee, and West Virginia in which McCain outperformed Bush's margin of victory from 4 years earlier, albeit slightly.

This was also only the second election since its statehood in which Oklahoma supported a different candidate than Virginia, with 1920 being the first. However, this has happened in all elections since, as Oklahoma has voted consistently Republican while Virginia has voted consistently Democratic.

Primaries

Campaign

Predictions

There were 16 news organizations who made state-by-state predictions of the election. Here are their last predictions before election day:

Source Ranking
D.C. Political Report[2] Likely R
Cook Political Report[3] Solid R
The Takeaway[4] Solid R
Electoral-vote.com[5] Solid R
Washington Post[6] Solid R
Politico[7] Solid R
RealClearPolitics[8] Solid R
FiveThirtyEight[6] Solid R
CQ Politics[9] Solid R
The New York Times[10] Solid R
CNN[11] Safe R
NPR[6] Solid R
MSNBC[6] Solid R
Fox News[12] Likely R
Associated Press[13] Likely R
Rasmussen Reports[14] Safe R

Polling

Main article: Statewide opinion polling for the 2008 United States presidential election: Oklahoma

McCain won every single pre-election poll, and each with a double-digit margin of victory. The final 3 polls averaged McCain leading 62% to 34%.[15]

Fundraising

John McCain raised a total of $2,050,335 in the state. Barack Obama raised $1,711,069.[16]

Advertising and visits

Obama spent $613,515. McCain and his interest groups spent just $6,565.[17] Neither campaign visited the state.[18]

Analysis

Oklahoma gave John McCain his strongest showing in Election 2008 with a rounded percentage of 66% (65.65%) going to him.[19] The Sooner State was also the only state in the country where every single county voted for McCain. Although the results were similar to 2004 in which George W. Bush swept every county in the state with 65.57% of the vote, McCain's margin of victory was slightly better - 0.08% more - in 2008.[20] Oklahoma was one of five states where McCain outperformed George W. Bush, the other four being Arkansas, Louisiana, Tennessee, and West Virginia.

Oklahoma, despite the large concentration of Native Americans in the state, remains one of the most reliably Republican states in the country. Although Democrats still had a majority of registered voters (as well as the governorship) at the time, the state's Democrats are very conservative by national standards. Oklahoma is part of the Bible Belt, and voters in the state have a strong penchant for being values voters; that is, they are strongly and deeply conservative on social issues such as abortion and gay rights. McCain's selection of the socially conservative Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska proved to be an excellent fit for the Sooner State. Obama was at a disadvantage beforehand in Oklahoma during the primary season when voters in the Sooner State backed Hillary Rodham Clinton with 54.76% of the vote compared to Obama's 31.19% and a significant amount (10.24%) going to John Edwards. Clinton won every county in the Oklahoma Democratic Primary except for Oklahoma County, home of Oklahoma City which Obama just narrowly carried. Most of Oklahoma's Democratic establishment were early endorsers of Hillary Clinton as well. Another setback for Obama was that U.S. Representative Dan Boren, the only Democrat from Oklahoma's five-member delegation in the U.S. House of Representatives, refused to endorse Obama.

Another key to McCain's victory was the highly populated counties of Tulsa County, which he won with over 62%, and Oklahoma County, which he won with over 58%. He also dominated the heavily Republican Oklahoma Panhandle by an almost four-to-one margin. Despite the Republican landslide, Obama did improve upon John Kerry's performance in Oklahoma City and Tulsa. However, this was more than canceled out by his extremely weak showing in Southeast Oklahoma, historically the most Democratic region in the state. This socially conservative but fiscally liberal area, known as "Little Dixie," still votes Democratic at the local level and state levels. It also warmly supported Bill Clinton of neighboring Arkansas in 1992 and 1996; Clinton's populism struck a chord among the region's voters. Democratic nominees from John Kerry on, on the other hand, have proven spectacularly bad fits for the region and the state as a whole. Obama lost many counties in Southeast Oklahoma by more than two-to-one margins.

Also, Oklahoma was the only state in the country that didn't have a third-party candidate on the ballot, mostly because the state has the toughest ballot access laws in the country.

During the same election, incumbent Republican U.S. Senator James Inhofe was solidly reelected over Democratic State Senator Andrew Rice. Inhofe received 56.68% while Rice took in 39.18% and Independent Stephen P. Wallace received the remaining 4.14%. At the state level, Republicans made gains in the Oklahoma Legislature, picking up four seats in the Oklahoma House of Representatives and two seats in the Oklahoma Senate which gave the GOP control of the state legislature for the first time since statehood.

Results

2008 United States presidential election in Oklahoma
Party Candidate Running mate Votes Percentage Electoral votes
Republican John McCain Sarah Palin 960,165 65.65% 7
Democratic Barack Obama Joe Biden 502,496 34.35% 0
Totals 1,462,661 100.00% 7
Voter turnout (Voting age population) 54.8%

By county

County McCain# McCain% Obama# Obama% Total
Adair 4,636 69.35% 2,049 30.65% 6,685
Alfalfa 2,023 83.11% 411 16.89% 2,434
Atoka 3,509 71.92% 1,370 28.08% 4,879
Beaver 2,197 89.24% 265 10.76% 2,462
Beckham 5,769 78.02% 1,625 21.98% 7,394
Blaine 3,100 75.41% 1,011 24.59% 4,111
Bryan 9,295 67.76% 4,423 32.24% 13,718
Caddo 6,401 65.34% 3,395 34.66% 9,796
Canadian 36,411 76.12% 11,422 23.88% 47,833
Carter 13,241 70.27% 5,603 29.73% 18,844
Cherokee 9,182 56.07% 7,193 43.93% 16,375
Choctaw 3,729 66.73% 1,859 33.27% 5,588
Cimarron 1,119 88.04% 152 11.96% 1,271
Cleveland 64,730 62.00% 39,673 38.00% 104,403
Coal 1,609 73.84% 570 26.16% 2,179
Comanche 20,127 58.77% 14,120 41.23% 34,247
Cotton 1,793 72.21% 690 27.79% 2,483
Craig 3,858 65.06% 2,072 34.94% 5,930
Creek 20,181 70.81% 8,318 29.19% 28,499
Custer 7,842 74.67% 2,660 25.33% 10,502
Delaware 10,274 66.90% 5,084 33.10% 15,358
Dewey 1,857 84.29% 346 15.71% 2,203
Ellis 1,627 85.23% 282 14.77% 1,909
Garfield 17,066 75.48% 5,545 24.52% 22,611
Garvin 7,708 71.80% 3,028 28.20% 10,736
Grady 15,187 73.36% 5,516 26.64% 20,703
Grant 1,836 78.13% 514 21.87% 2,350
Greer 1,548 73.23% 566 26.77% 2,114
Harmon 757 69.45% 333 30.55% 1090
Harper 1,342 85.86% 221 14.14% 1,563
Haskell 3,206 68.50% 1,474 31.50% 4,680
Hughes 3,132 64.75% 1,705 35.25% 4,837
Jackson 6,716 74.80% 2,263 25.20% 8,979
Jefferson 1,649 67.20% 805 32.80% 2,454
Johnston 2,707 68.48% 1,246 31.52% 3,953
Kay 13,229 70.78% 5,462 29.22% 18,691
Kingfisher 5,372 84.19% 1,009 15.81% 6,381
Kiowa 2,536 67.41% 1,226 32.59% 3,762
Latimer 2,860 68.54% 1,313 31.46% 4,173
LeFlore 11,603 69.32% 5,136 30.68% 16,739
Lincoln 10,468 74.93% 3,503 25.07% 13,971
Logan 12,555 68.72% 5,716 31.28% 18,271
Love 2,589 67.32% 1,257 32.68% 3,846
Major 2,955 85.16% 515 14.84% 3,470
Marshall 3,729 69.43% 1,642 30.57% 5,371
Mayes 10,231 64.02% 5,749 35.98% 15,980
McClain 11,184 75.91% 3,550 24.09% 14,734
McCurtain 7,744 73.50% 2,792 26.50% 10,536
McIntosh 4,903 59.64% 3,318 40.36% 8,221
Murray 3,746 70.18% 1,592 29.82% 5,338
Muskogee 15,276 57.51% 11,286 42.49% 26,562
Noble 3,881 76.78% 1,174 23.22% 5,055
Nowata 3,029 68.22% 1,411 31.78% 4,440
Okfuskee 2,642 64.13% 1,478 35.87% 4,120
Oklahoma 163,099 58.41% 116,133 41.59% 279,232
Okmulgee 8,724 58.51% 6,187 41.49% 14,911
Osage 12,150 61.85% 7,493 38.15% 19,643
Ottawa 6,904 61.81% 4,266 38.19% 11,170
Pawnee 4,533 68.72% 2,063 31.28% 6,596
Payne 18,435 63.49% 10,601 36.51% 29,036
Pittsburg 11,739 68.28% 5,454 31.72% 17,193
Pontotoc 9,749 68.37% 4,511 31.63% 14,260
Pottawatomie 17,728 69.16% 7,906 30.84% 25,634
Pushmataha 3,208 71.72% 1,265 28.28% 4,473
Roger Mills 1,502 84.00% 286 16.00% 1,788
Rogers 27,732 72.03% 10,770 27.97% 38,502
Seminole 5,599 65.29% 2,977 34.71% 8,576
Sequoyah 9,465 68.00% 4,454 32.00% 13,919
Stephens 14,392 76.03% 4,538 23.97% 18,930
Texas 5,332 85.24% 923 14.76% 6,255
Tillman 2,195 67.81% 1,042 32.19% 3,237
Tulsa 158,322 62.23% 96,106 37.77% 254,428
Wagoner 21,426 70.87% 8,805 29.13% 30,231
Washington 16,457 72.29% 6,308 27.71% 22,765
Washita 3,716 77.97% 1,050 22.03% 4,766
Woods 3,043 77.77% 870 22.23% 3,913
Woodward 6,402 82.61% 1,348 17.39% 7,750

By congressional district

John McCain carried every congressional district in Oklahoma, including the one district held by a Democrat in the U.S. House of Representatives rather strongly.

District McCain Obama Representative
1st 64.21% 35.79% John A. Sullivan
2nd 65.59% 34.41% Dan Boren
3rd 72.82% 27.18% Frank Lucas
4th 66.37% 33.63% Tom Cole
5th 59.32% 40.68% Mary Fallin

Electors

Main article: List of 2008 United States presidential electors

Technically the voters of Oklahoma cast their ballots for electors: representatives to the Electoral College. Oklahoma is allocated 7 electors because it has 5 congressional districts and 2 senators. All candidates who appear on the ballot or qualify to receive write-in votes must submit a list of 7 electors, who pledge to vote for their candidate and his or her running mate. Whoever wins the majority of votes in the state is awarded all 7 electoral votes. Their chosen electors then vote for president and vice president. Although electors are pledged to their candidate and running mate, they are not obligated to vote for them.[21] An elector who votes for someone other than his or her candidate is known as a faithless elector.

The electors of each state and the District of Columbia met on December 15, 2008, to cast their votes for president and vice president. The Electoral College itself never meets as one body. Instead the electors from each state and the District of Columbia met in their respective capitols.

The following were the members of the Electoral College from the state. All 7 were pledged to John McCain and Sarah Palin:[22]

  1. Virginia Chrisco
  2. Gail Stice
  3. Pete Katzdorn
  4. Robert Cleveland
  5. Mary Phyllis Gorman
  6. Bunny Chambers
  7. Diane Murphy Gunther

The slate for the Democrats, which was not elected, consisted of Sally Freeman Frasier, Gene A. Wallace, Anita R. Norman, Tim Mauldin, Robert Lemon, David Walters, Walter W. Jenny Jr.[23]

See also

References

  1. ^ "CNN Election Center 2008 - Oklahoma Results". Retrieved May 26, 2010.
  2. ^ "D.C.'s Political Report: The complete source for campaign summaries". 2009-01-01. Archived from the original on 2009-01-01. Retrieved 2021-08-23.
  3. ^ "Presidential". 2015-05-05. Archived from the original on 2015-05-05. Retrieved 2021-08-23.
  4. ^ "Vote 2008 - The Takeaway - Track the Electoral College vote predictions". 2009-04-22. Archived from the original on 2009-04-22. Retrieved 2021-08-23.
  5. ^ "Electoral-vote.com: President, Senate, House Updated Daily". electoral-vote.com. Retrieved 2021-08-23.
  6. ^ a b c d Based on Takeaway
  7. ^ "POLITICO's 2008 Swing State Map - POLITICO.com". www.politico.com. Retrieved 2016-09-22.
  8. ^ "RealClearPolitics - Electoral Map". Archived from the original on 2008-06-05.
  9. ^ "CQ Presidential Election Maps, 2008". CQ Politics. Archived from the original on June 14, 2009. Retrieved December 20, 2009.
  10. ^ Nagourney, Adam; Zeleny, Jeff; Carter, Shan (2008-11-04). "The Electoral Map: Key States". The New York Times. Retrieved May 26, 2010.
  11. ^ "October – 2008 – CNN Political Ticker - CNN.com Blogs". CNN. 2008-10-31. Retrieved May 26, 2010.
  12. ^ "Winning The Electoral College". Fox News. April 27, 2010.
  13. ^ "roadto270". hosted.ap.org. Retrieved 2016-09-22.
  14. ^ "Election 2008: Electoral College Update - Rasmussen Reports™". www.rasmussenreports.com. Retrieved 2016-09-22.
  15. ^ David Leip. "Election 2008 Polls - Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". Retrieved 14 January 2015.
  16. ^ "Presidential Campaign Finance". Archived from the original on 24 March 2009. Retrieved 14 January 2015.
  17. ^ "Map: Campaign Ad Spending - Election Center 2008 from CNN.com". CNN. Retrieved May 26, 2010.
  18. ^ "Map: Campaign Candidate Visits - Election Center 2008 from CNN.com". CNN. Retrieved May 26, 2010.
  19. ^ "2008 Presidential Election Statistics". Dave Leip’s Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections. Retrieved 2018-03-05.
  20. ^ "CNN Election Center 2004 - Oklahoma Results". Retrieved May 26, 2010.
  21. ^ "Electoral College". California Secretary of State. Archived from the original on October 30, 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-01.
  22. ^ "U. S. Electoral College 2008 Election - Certificates". Retrieved 14 January 2015.
  23. ^ https://www.ok.gov/elections/documents/08electr.pdf[bare URL PDF]