United States presidential election in Idaho, 2008

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United States presidential election in Idaho, 2008
Idaho
2004 ←
November 4, 2008
→ 2012

  John McCain official portrait with alternative background.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 4 0
Popular vote 403,012 236,440
Percentage 61.21% 35.91%

Idaho Presidential Election Results by Shaded County, 2008.svg

County Results
  Obama—60-70%
  Obama—50-60%
  Obama—<50%
  McCain—50-60%
  McCain—60-70%
  McCain—70-80%
  McCain—80-90%

President before election

George W. Bush
Republican

Elected President

Barack Obama
Democratic

The 2008 United States presidential election in Idaho took place on November 4, 2008 throughout all 50 states and D.C., which was part of the 2008 United States presidential election. Voters chose 4 representatives, or electors to the Electoral College, who voted for President and Vice President.

Idaho was won by Republican nominee John McCain by a 25.3% 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. Polling in the state gave a very comfortable lead to Republican John McCain over Democrat Barack Obama, sometimes by a margin of at least 30 percent, the most being 43 percent. Idaho was largely considered a safely Republican state, as it has not gone Democratic since Lyndon B. Johnson's landslide victory in 1964.

Primaries

Campaign

Predictions

There were 17 news organizations who made state by state predictions of the election. Here are their last predictions before election day:

  1. D.C. Political Report: Republican1
  2. Cook Political Report: Solid Republican2
  3. Takeaway: Solid McCain3
  4. Election Projection: Solid McCain4
  5. Electoral-vote.com: Strong Republican5
  6. Washington Post: Solid McCain6
  7. Politico: Solid McCain7
  8. Real Clear Politics: Solid McCain8
  9. FiveThirtyEight.com: Solid McCain6
  10. CQ Politics: Safe Republican9
  11. New York Times: Solid Republican10
  12. CNN: Safe Republican11
  13. NPR: Solid Republican6
  14. MSNBC: Solid Republican6
  15. Fox News: Republican12
  16. Associated Press: Republican13
  17. Rasmussen Reports: Safe Republican14

Polling

McCain won every pre-election poll, each with a double digit margin and with at least 52%. The final 3 poll average gave the Republican 66% to 29%.15

Fundraising

Obama raised $874,523. McCain raised $441,338.16

Advertising and visits

Obama spent $268. McCain spent $434.17 Neither campaign visited the state.18

Analysis

With a substantial Mormon population, Idaho is one of the most reliably GOP bastions in the country. Although Barack Obama became the first Democratic presidential candidate since Michael Dukakis in 1988 to eclipse 35 percent of the vote in solidly red state Idaho,19 the state was still won handily by John McCain by a margin of approximately 25.34 percent. McCain carried 41 of the state's 44 counties. Obama carried Blaine County, home to Sun Valley and several other prime ski resorts; Latah County, home to the college town of Moscow, and Teton County, a highly affluent suburb of Teton County, Wyoming. While Obama did not carry Ada County, he did carry the state capital and city of Boise. McCain's victory in Idaho, however, was less than that of George W. Bush's who carried the state with 68.38% of the vote in 2004, a 12.78-percent swing to the Democrats in Idaho.

During the same election, Republicans held onto the open U.S. Senate seat vacated by Republican Larry Craig who reluctantly retired after it was revealed that he had solicited a man for sex in the men's restroom at an airport in Minneapolis. Former Lieutenant Governor Jim Risch, a Republican, was elected with 57.65% of the vote over Democrat Larry LaRocco who received 34.11%. A pro-life independent candidate received 5.35% while Libertarian Kent Marmon received 1.54% and Rex Rammell, a far right-wing candidate who also ran as an Independent, received 1.34%.

At the state level, Republicans expanded their supermajority status in the Idaho state legislature as they picked up one seat in the Idaho House of Representatives.

Results

United States presidential election in Idaho, 200820
Party Candidate Running mate Votes Percentage Electoral votes
Republican John McCain Sarah Palin 403,012 61.21% 4
Democratic Barack Obama Joe Biden 236,440 35.91% 0
Independent Ralph Nader Matt Gonzalez 7,175 1.09% 0
Constitution Chuck Baldwin Darrell Castle 4,747 0.72% 0
Libertarian Bob Barr Wayne Allyn Root 3,658 0.56% 0
Write-ins Write-ins 3,340 0.51% 0
American Independent (Write-in) Alan Keyes (Write-in) Brian Rohrbough 40 0.01% 0
Green (Write-in) Cynthia McKinney (Write-in) Rosa Clemente 39 0.01% 0
Socialist (Write-in) Brian Moore (Write-in) Stewart Alexander 3 0.00% 0
Totals 658,454 100.00% 4
Voter turnout (Voting age population) 60.1%

Results breakdown

By county

County Obama% Obama# McCain% McCain#
Ada 46.90% 82023 53.10% 92879
Adams 32.46% 728 67.54% 1515
Bannock 43.32% 14792 56.68% 19356
Bear Lake 17.44% 502 82.56% 2377
Benewah 34.72% 1407 65.28% 2646
Bingham 26.56% 4424 73.44% 12230
Blaine 66.89% 6947 33.11% 3439
Boise 33.76% 1240 66.24% 2433
Bonner 41.30% 7840 58.70% 11145
Bonneville 28.02% 11415 71.98% 29324
Boundary 32.24% 1474 67.76% 3098
Butte 23.14% 318 76.86% 1056
Camas 30.71% 187 69.29% 422
Canyon 32.03% 20147 67.97% 42752
Caribou 17.23% 553 82.77% 2656
Cassia 17.30% 1305 82.70% 6240
Clark 17.34% 64 82.66% 305
Clearwater 32.04% 1211 67.96% 2569
Custer 26.68% 620 73.32% 1704
Elmore 31.17% 2523 68.83% 5571
Franklin 12.40% 599 87.60% 4231
Fremont 18.47% 1065 81.53% 4700
Gem 27.94% 2166 72.06% 5585
Gooding 28.29% 1485 71.71% 3764
Idaho 24.71% 1935 75.29% 5895
Jefferson 16.12% 1641 83.88% 8540
Jerome 26.81% 1794 73.19% 4897
Kootenai 36.56% 22120 63.44% 38387
Latah 53.51% 9191 46.49% 7984
Lemhi 21.32% 796 78.68% 2938
Lewis 27.31% 479 72.69% 1275
Lincoln 33.95% 497 66.05% 967
Madison 12.75% 1625 87.25% 11120
Minidoka 22.24% 1137 77.76% 3976
Nez Perce 40.75% 7123 59.25% 10357
Oneida 18.10% 381 81.90% 1724
Owyhee 23.79% 944 76.21% 3024
Payette 28.74% 2415 71.26% 5988
Power 36.93% 1027 63.07% 1754
Shoshone 46.05% 2521 53.95% 2953
Teton 50.43% 2302 49.57% 2263
Twin Falls 31.18% 8621 68.82% 19032
Valley 46.54% 2394 53.46% 2750
Washington 28.15% 1241 71.85% 3168

By congressional district

John McCain solidly swept both of Idaho’s two congressional districts.

District McCain Obama Representative
1st 61.82% 35.88% Bill Sali (110th Congress)
Walt Minnick (111th Congress)
2nd 61.19% 36.34% Mike Simpson

Electors

Technically the voters of Idaho cast their ballots for electors: representatives to the Electoral College. Idaho is allocated 4 electors because it has 2 congressional districts and 2 senators. All candidates who appear on the ballot or qualify to receive write-in votes must submit a list of 4 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 4 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 four were pledged to John McCain and Sarah Palin:22

  1. Darlene Bramon
  2. Ben Doty
  3. John Erickson
  4. Melinda Smyser

References

See also








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