Political Animal


January 04, 2013 1:19 PM Final 2012 Results

By Ed Kilgore

David Wasserman of the Cook Political Report, who has been obsessively following late returns, provisional ballot rulings, and other adjustments, has issued his final tally of the 2012 presidential election popular vote: Obama 65,899,557 (51.06%), Romney 60,931,959 (47.21%).

Obama’s 3.85% margin is a bit above half of his 2008 margin (7.2%), and well above George W. Bush’s 2.4% margin in 2004. And get this: Obama has now twice posted a higher percentage of the popular vote than any Democratic presidential nominee since Lyndon Johnson.

Since Republican operatives and pundits spent a goodly part of the election cycle suggesting this would be a replay of 1980, it should be noted that Obama squeaked past Carter’s percentage of the vote that year by more than 10 points. His numbers were pretty close to Ronald Reagan’s in 1980 (actually exceeding St. Ronald’s 50.7%), but I don’t think that’s what GOPers had in mind in raising the analogy.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.


  • Quaker in a Basement on January 04, 2013 1:31 PM:

    Romney's final vote total is...47 percent!


  • exlibra on January 04, 2013 1:36 PM:

    @Quaker. Karma is an Irish Setter riding on the roof of a family car...

  • Eeyore on January 04, 2013 1:42 PM:

    This is a patently obvious case of voter fraud! The New Black Panther Party was SEEN ON VIDEO distributing Free Stuff to Illegal Immigrants who voted using the names of dead people. Romney REALLY won! I read about it somewhere on Fox News, so it must be true.

  • mudwall jackson on January 04, 2013 1:51 PM:

    quaker, exlibra,

    thank you! you both made my day...

  • T2 on January 04, 2013 3:27 PM:

    the best post script about Romney was his kid (Tag,Tog,Trip,Topi...something like that) saying his dad really didn't want to run for president. Sure kid, except he did it TWO times.
    I still can't believe Romney made it all the way through the campaign without releasing his TAX Returns! What a worthless Media. Now, I guess, the precedent is set.

  • Quaker in a Basement on January 04, 2013 5:20 PM:

    Now, I guess, the precedent is set.

    Only until the next time a rich Dem runs.

  • Steve Sailer on January 04, 2013 6:34 PM:

    Interesting that Nate Silver _under_estimated how much Obama would win by.