Friday, January 04, 2013

Obama first since 1956 to win 51% twice

By Richard K. Barry

It's good to win and it's even better to win convincingly. As Bloomberg reported yesterday:

Eight weeks after the Nov. 6 presidential election, a revised vote count in New York shows that Barack Obama is the first president in more than five decades to win at least 51 percent of the vote twice.

State election officials submitted a final tally Dec. 31 that added about 400,000 votes, most of them from provisional ballots in the Democratic-stronghold of New York City that were counted late in part because of complications caused by superstorm Sandy.

And to put that in historical perspective:

Obama is the first president to achieve that level of support in two elections since Republican Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956 and the first Democrat to do so since Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1944.

I know I'll only be the millionth person to make this point, but in our Electoral College system, you don't put resources into states where you either don't have a chance or expect to win handily. So there is no saying what the final count would have been if Obama had run harder in, for example, New York or California. It is true that Romney used the same logic in not running up his totals in solidly red states. The point is that they both ran their campaigns based on the rules in play and Obama kicked ass.

For those who pay close attention to the numbers, this means that President Obama won 65.9 million votes, or 51.1 percent - to Mitt Romney's 60.9 million votes, or 47.2 percent. 

Some crazy Republicans will try to claim that Obama squeaked by against an inferior opponent. Let them say what they will, history says otherwise.

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