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The United States presidential election of 2012 was held on Tuesday, November 6, 2012. It was the 57th consecutive quadrennial United States presidential election. The election took place as the Second Depression entered its second year, and was during the second year of the Chinese Civil War, as well. Incumbent President Barack Obama's Republican opponent was former Governor Mike Huckabee of Arkansas, a moderate conservative. Although some political pundits predicted a close race, Huckabee would win by a 16% margin in the popular vote.
Domestic policy and the economy were the main themes in the first few months of the election campaign, and defense of course was an issue, due of course to the threats from Communist China and North Korea.
President Barack Obama, Democrat from Illinois, was defeated by Republican Mike Huckabee, former Governor of Arkansas. Fifteen states changed allegiance from the 2008 election. Each had voted for the President Obama in 2008 and contributed to Huckabee's landslide Electoral College victory. The selected electors from each of the 51 states and the District of Columbia voted for President and Vice President of the United States on December 15, 2012. Those votes were tallied before a joint session of Congress on January 8, 2013. Huckabee received 287 votes, and Obama received 251.
One of the most notable aspects of the 2012 election was the election of a woman, Meg Whitman, to the vice-Presidency. While the current Vice-President, Hillary Clinton, was a woman, she was appointed by President Obama after the resignation and subsequent death of Joe Biden.
- President Barack Obama (D-Illinois)
- Evan Bayh, Former Senator (D-Indiana)
- Senator Joe Lieberman (ID-Connecticut)
In January of 2010, President Obama began forming his reelection campaign. He officially announced that he would run for reelection on February 19, 2011. On March 23, moderate-to-conservative former Senator Evan Bayh of Indiana announced that he would be running for President. His more moderate stance appealed to anti-Obama Democrats, and he quickly became a threat to Obama. Senator Joe Lieberman (ID-CT), also announced, and appealed to more conservative Democrats as well. Come the primaries, Bayh won Iowa and Michigan, Lieberman won New Hampshire, and Obama took Nevada, South Carolina, and Florida. Super Tuesday showed mixed results: Obama did well in the South, while Bayh took the Midwest and Lieberman took the Northeast. Lieberman withdrew on that date, and the race became a neck-and-neck fight between Obama and Bayh. Lieberman released all of his delegates, and they flocked to Obama, giving him the nomination.
- Governor Haley Barbour (R-Mississippi)
- Jeb Bush, former Governor (R-Florida)
- Mike Huckabee, former Governor (R-Arkansas)
- Gary Johnson, former Governor (R-New Mexico)
- Senator Jon Kyl (R-Arizona)
- George Pataki, former Governor (R-New York)
- Tim Pawlenty, former Governor (R-Minnesota)
- Governor Rick Perry (R-Texas)
- Mitt Romney, former Governor (R-Massachusetts)
- Rick Santorum, former Senator (R-Pennsylvania)
Beginning in November of 2010, several Republicans announced their intentions to run for President in 2012. Here is an overview:
- Early Primaries: Huckabee in IA and SC, Romney in NH and NV. Pence and Johnson dropped out.
- Super Tuesday: Romney won everything besides WV, which voted for Huckabee. Barbour, Bush, Kyl and Pataki to drop out.
- Green States: Huckabee won Maryland, Kentucky, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Missouri, Texas, and Oklahoma. Pawlenty won Washington, Oregon, Minnesota and Wisconsin. Romney took only Utah and Colorado. Santorum dropped out.
Romney dropped out after Huckabee's comeback. Huckabee won the nomination later.
In 2008, President Barack Obama won the presidency, defeating the Republican nominee, Senator John McCain, in a re-aligning election from Ronald Reagan's Republican Party. After Democratic pickups in the House and Senate from the 2006 elections, Democrats maintained control of both legislative branches of the federal government, and grew to a super majority in the Senate in 2009 with the seating of Senator Al Franken (D-Minnesota)
Obama's approval ratings had held low levels for most of his term, dropping from a high of 69% to a low of 38% by 2010. Obama was elected with a large Electoral College margin in 2008 and a modest majority of the popular vote, and after his first 100 days, Obama's approval rating fell more quickly, with the Ted Kennedy Universal Healthcare Act's passage (to which an overwhelming majority Americans were opposed) the passage of the FY 2010 federal budget, and the crafting of the SAFeT treaty.
By September 2010, Obama's approval rating was holding at 45%, and the Republican Party appeared to have a clear advantage in the upcoming congressional elections. Additionally, the Republicans got closer to the majority in the Senate and held a big majority in the House. Obama's approval ratings continued to hold in the high 30s for the rest of his term.
The election was held on November 6, 2012.
Huckabee won by 36 electoral votes, carrying 30 of the 50 states. Congress was a mixture of Republicans, Democrats, and Independents. Huckabee's 16% popular vote landslide is not unmatched in actual percentage, and is matched in margin only by Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon. He was the first Republican to win California in 24 years (since 1988).
The election was interesting, as it was seen as the ending of the two party system in the U.S. Democrats were nearly extinct in the House, being crushed by a mixture of Republicans and Independents. Most of them were moderate conservatives, and against the far-left, neo-socialist agenda that Obama seemed to support.
Afghanistan & Pakistan
In October 2012, without much success on the ground at all, President Obama began withdrawing from the Afghanistan. Huckabee opposed this, as did around 49% of Americans (46% were opposed).
The unemployment rate was 25% and most Americans supported Mike Huckabee on the economy.
Presidential and Vice-Presidential Debates
There were two debates, one presidential and one vice-presidential. Both were town halls:
- October 26, 2012, Indiana University - Vice-Presidential debate between Vice-President Hillary Clinton and Governor Meg Whitman (R-California).
- November 1, 2012, University of California, Irvine - Presidential debate between President Barack Obama and former Governor Mike Huckabee (R-Arkansas).