Ohio voters have backed the winning presidential candidate 93% of the time since 1900
Kyle Kondik, managing editor of Sabato’s Crystal Ball, wrote a book in early 2016 called, “The Bellweather: Why Ohio Picks the President.”
Ohio voters have selected the winning presidential candidate in 28 of 30 election cycles since 1900. The state has the highest accuracy of any state—93%—in backing the winner of the presidential election.
The two elections during this period where Ohio voted for the candidate who lost the presidential election was 1960, when the state voted for Richard Nixon (R) instead of winning candidate John F. Kennedy (D) 53.3-46.7%, and 1944, when Ohio voted for Thomas E. Dewey (R) over Franklin D. Roosevelt (D), 50.2-49.8%.
Most states have participated in all 30 presidential elections during this time; however, five states and the District of Columbia didn’t participate in their first election until after 1900. Those states are Oklahoma (1908), Arizona (1912), New Mexico (1912), Alaska (1960), Hawaii (1960), and Washington, D.C. (1964).
Washington, D.C., has backed the winning presidential candidate in only 43% of elections—the lowest percentage of all jurisdictions. Voters there have supported the winning candidate in six out of the 14 elections in which it has participated since 1964.
Some states have voted for the same party for president more than 80% of the time. Here are the states that voted for the Democratic presidential candidate five or fewer times since 1900:
- North Dakota—5
- South Dakota—3
Here are the states that voted for the Republican presidential candidate five or fewer times since 1900:
- Washington, D.C.—0
Third-party candidates won at least one state in four presidential elections since 1900.
- 1912, Progressive Party candidate Theodore Roosevelt won six states.
- 1924, Progressive Party candidate Robert M. La Follette Sr. won Wisconsin.
- 1948, States’ Rights Democratic Party candidate J. Strom Thurmond won four southern states.
- 1968, American Independent Party candidate George Wallace won five southern states.