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The US presidential election of 2016 was the 58th quadrennial presidential election. It was held on November 8th, 2016. The Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and her running mate Julian Castro won the popular vote and the electoral college by a landslide, making it the biggest victory of the Democratic Party since 1964, and making her the first female president of the United States.
The Republican Party led by Donald Trump suffered from a spoiler effect caused by the Conservative Party, a third party led by Rick Perry that was created by former Republicans as a protest against Trump's nomination. As a result the Democrats took advantage and sweeped the swing states while the red states got split between the opposition parties. The Conservative Party was quickly disbanded afterwards and a strong rift was caused in the Republican Party.
The Conservative Party led the best result for a Third Party in recent history, being the first third party to get electoral votes since 1972 and the first to carry states since 1968. While the Libertarian Party pulled it's greatest performance as a party in history in popular votes, while failing to get any delegates, they managed to get 5% of the vote to become a major party.
- Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State (Nominee)
- Bernie Sanders, Senator from Vermont
- Martin O'Malley, former Governor of Maryland
- Jim Webb, former Senator from Virginia
- Lincoln Chafee, former Mayor, Senator, and Governor of Rhode Island
- Lawrence Lessig, Harvard Law Professor
Early in 2015 it was assumed that Hillary Clinton would get the nomination largely unchallenged. However due to numerous scandals and her reputation as a centrist that holds anti-progressive views such as support for Wall Street and military intervention, an independent Senator from Vermont named Bernie Sanders started gaining momentum. Bernie Sanders, a self-described Democratic Socialists gained popularity for his stances on healthcare and free college, and posed a significant challenge, winning many states in the process. However Hillary Clinton would eventually win the nomination thanks to superdelegates as well as getting the minority vote. She chose Julian Castro as her running mate.
- Donald Trump, Chairman and President of The Trump Organization (Nominee)
- Ted Cruz, Senator from Texas
- Marco Rubio, Senator from Florida
- John Kasich, Governor of Ohio
- Ben Carson, former Director of Pediatric Neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital
- Jeb Bush, former Governor of Florida
- Chris Christie, Governor of New Jersey
- Carly Fiorina, former CEO of Hewlett-Packard
- Mike Huckabee, former Governor of Arkansas
- Rand Paul, Senator from Kentucky
- Rick Perry, former Governor of Texas
- George Pataki, former Governor of New York
- Lindsey Graham, Senator from South Carolina
- Scott Walker, Governor of Wisconsin
- Rick Santorum, Senator from Pennsylvania
- Jim Gilmore, former Governor of Virginia
The Republicans faced a lot of competition between a big list of candidates, early on in the polls the lead fluctuated between Scott Walker and Jeb Bush, Jeb Bush in particular was thought to get the nomination due to having the strongest funding in his campaign.
However this changed when Donald Trump entered the race, he started getting huge prominence in polls due to his harsh anti-immigration rhetoric and opposition towards free trade. His views described as populist and nativist gave him an anti-establishment "telling it like it is" reputation which gained him support from blue collar voters, nationalists, and Reagan Democrats, but made him very unpopular among the Republican establishments and movement conservatives
The early rankings quickly changed, which eventually led to the primary being between front runner Donald Trump and follow up Ted Cruz. Opponents of Trump hoped to defeat him through a brokered convention, however Trump eventually gained a majority of delegates getting him the nomination, he chose Ben Carson as his running mate.
Major Third Parties
Trump's unpopularity among many conservatives led to a grassroots movement to stop Trump, this movement was largely led by SuperPACs, think tanks such as Club for Growth, and conservative pundits under the hashtag #NeverTrump. This led to the creation of a third party called the Conservative Party which they described as a real alternative for Constitutional Conservatives.
The Conservative Party nominated Rick Perry, who chose Ben Sasse as his running mate.
Former Governor of New Mexico Gary Johnson managed to get the Libertarian nomination. Before the creation of the Conservative Party it was speculated that Gary Johnson would be the go to candidate for the anti-Trump conservatives, which allowed Johnson to get significant media attention. The party voted John McAfee to be his running mate.
2012 Green Party candidate Jill Stein managed to win the nomination again. The party performed much better this election than in 2012 by tapping into the Bernie Sanders vote, however they failed to reach the 5% threshold to become a major party.
|Hillary Clinton||Democratic Party||45%|
|Donald Trump||Republican Party||30%|
|Rick Perry||Conservative Party||18%|
|Gary Johnson||Libertarian Party||5%|
|Jill Stein||Green Party||1,2%|