‹ 2012 50-star-flag-big 2020
United States presidential election, 2016
November 8, 2016
Hillary Clinton official Secretary of State portrait crop 845px-Donald Trump by Gage Skidmore Garyjohnsonphoto
Nominee Hillary Clinton Donald Trump Gary Johnson
Party Democratic Republican Libertarian
Home state New York New York New Mexico
Running mate Tim Kaine Mike Pence Bill Weld
Electoral vote 358 180 0
States carried 29 + DC 21 0
Popular vote 63,564,020 58,722,000 18,560,423
Percentage 50.8% 33.2% 17.0%
President before election
Barack Obama
Elected President
Hillary Clinton

The United States presidential election of 2016 was the 58th quadrennial United States presidential election. It was held on Tuesday, November 8, 2016. Democratic Party candidate and former U.S Secretary of State Hillary Clinton defeated Republican Party candidate and businessman Donald Trump, as well as Libertarian Party candidate and former New Mexico Governor, Gary Johnson.

The main issues of the campaign were immigration, foreign policy and the economy. In particular, the shape of the economy under the Obama administration, as well as the controversial rollout of the Affordable Care Act, dubbed "Obamacare".

Hillary Clinton won a majority of the popular and electoral vote, winning all "swing states". Clinton was the first female President in addition to the second oldest elected President.

Gary Johnson and the Libertarian ticket claimed the largest percentage of the popular vote in Party history. This election marked the beginning of the end for the American two-party system, with the historied Republican Party splitting into two separate entities following the election; the now-predominately nativist and socially conservative GOP, and the moderate, hawkish American Party.


In 2012 incumbent President Barack Obama won reelection over Republican former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney and running mate Wisconsin Representative Paul Ryan. Despite signs of competitive races in states such as Montana, Missouri and North Dakota, the Democrats held the Senate. The Republicans however, held the House of Representatives.

Over the course of his second term, Obama faced mixed, to staggeringly low approval ratings in many states. Obama attempted to remedy this by backing down on gun control and deciding not to intervene in the Syrian Civil War.

In 2014 the Democrats lost their Majority in the Senate by ten seats. With the Republicans controlling both parts of Congress, the President and the Congressional Democrats did not get much done on their agenda. With anemic economic growth, an unstable world stage, and egregious violations of civil liberties at home (and to some degrees abroad), many Americans desired a change in government.


Democratic Party nomination

Democratic candidates

  • Hillary Clinton, former U.S. Secretary of State from New York (nominee)
  • Bernie Sanders, Independent U.S. Senator from Vermont (Endorsed Hillary Clinton June 12th, 2016)
  • Martin O'Malley, former Governor of Maryland (Withdrew February 1st 2016, and later endorsed Hillary Clinton)
  • Lawrence Lessig, Law Professor at Harvard University from Massachusetts (Withdrew November 2nd, 2015, and made no endorsement)
  • Lincoln Chafee, former Governor of Rhode Island (Withdrew October 23rd, 2015, and made no endorsement)
  • Jim Webb, former U.S. Senator from Virginia, and former U.S. Secretary of the Navy (Withdrew October 20th, 2015, and made no endorsement)

Declined to run

Republican Party nomination

Republican candidates

  • Donald Trump, businessman from New York  (Nominee)
  • John Kasich, Governor of Ohio (Withdrew May 4th, 2016, and made no endorsement)
  • Ted Cruz, U.S. Senator from Texas (Withdrew May 3rd, 2016, and later endorsed Donald Trump)
  • Marco Rubio, U.S. Senator from Florida (Withdrew March 15th, 2016, and later endorsed Donald Trump)
  • Ben Carson, former Director of Pediatric Neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital from Maryland (Withdrew March 2nd, 2016, and later endorsed Donald Trump)
  • Jeb Bush, former Governor of Florida (Withdrew February 20th, 2016, and endorsed Ted Cruz, he later made no endorsement)
  • Jim Gilmore, former Governor of Virginia (Withdrew February 12th, 2016, and endorsed Donald Trump)
  • Chris Christie, Governor of New Jersey (Withdrew February 10th, 2016, and later endorsed Donald Trump)
  • Carly Fiorina, former Hewlett-Packard CEO from Virginia (Withdrew February 10th, 2016, and later endorsed Ted Cruz, she later made no endorsement)
  • Rick Santorum, former U.S Senator from Pennsylvania (Withdrew February 3rd, 2016, and endorsed Marco Rubio, he later endorsed Donald Trump)
  • Rand Paul, U.S Senator from Kentucky (Withdrew February 3rd, 2016, and later endorsed Donald Trump)
  • Mike Huckabee, former Governor of Arkansas (Withdrew February 1st, 2016, and later endorsed Donald Trump)
  • George Pataki, former Governor of New York (Withdrew December 29th, 2015, and endorsed Marco Rubio, he later endorsed Donald Trump)
  • Lindsey Graham, U.S Senator from South Carolina (Withdrew December 21st, 2015, and endorsed Jeb Bush, he then endorsed Ted Cruz and later made no endorsement)
  • Bobby Jindal, former Governor of Louisiana (Withdrew November 17th, 2015, and endorsed Marco Rubio, he later endorsed Donald Trump)
  • Scott Walker, Governor of Wisconsin (Withdrew September 21st, 2015, and later endorsed Ted Cruz, he then endorsed Donald Trump)
  • Rick Perry, former Governor of Texas (Withdrew September 11, 2015, and endorsed Ted Cruz, he later endorsed Donald Trump)

Declined to run

Third party bids

Libertarian Party nomination

Libertarian candidates

  • Gary Johnson, former Governor of New Mexico (Nominee)
  • John McAfee, businessman from Tennessee
  • Austin Petersen, owner and founder of The Libertarian Republic from Missouri
  • Rhett Smith, private security officer from Texas
  • Marc Feldman, physician from Ohio
  • John David Hale, college student from Kentucky
  • Joy Waymire, ranch forman and veteran from California
  • Steve Kerbel, CEO from Colorado
  • Jack Robinson, Jr, businessman and inventor from Colorado
  • Darryl Perry, activist and author from Alabama
  • Cecil Ince, Ince Films owner from Missouri
  • Derrick Michael Reid, lawyer and engineer from California
  • Merry Susan Nehls, from Oregon
  • Keenan Wallace Dunham, activist from South Carolina
  • Nathan Norman, actor from Pennsylvania
  • Shawna Joy Sterling, Pastoral Counselor from Kentucky
  • Donald Eugene Lowe, businessman
  • Bart Lower, businessman from Michigan
  • Robert David Steele, author and activist from Virginia

Former New Mexico Governor and 2012 presidential nominee Gary Johnson, ran again for the nomination. After facing a large field of low-profile candidates, Johnson won handily. Johnson chose former Massachusetts Governor William Weld as his running mate.

Green Party nomination

Green candidates

  • Jill Stein, physician from Massachusetts (Nominee)
  • Rosa Clemente, activist from New York
  • Darryl Cherney, musician from California
  • Kent Mesplay, former delegate from California
  • Harley Mikkkelson, perennial candidate from Michigan
  • Midge Potts, activist from Missouri

Physician and 2012 presidential nominee Jill Stein, sought the nomination again. Stein faced a slight challenge from 2008 vice presidential nominee, Rosa Clemente, but emerged from the primary victorious. Stein chose 2012 running mate, Cheri Honkala, as her running mate.

Constitution Party nomination

Constitution candidates

  • John Hostettler, U.S. Representative from Ohio (Nominee)
  • J.R Myers, Alaska Constitution Party founder from Alaska
  • Robby Wells, former Savannah State University head football coach from Georgia
  • Chad Koppie, farmer from Illinois
  • Scott Copeland, ordained minister from Texas

Ohio Congressman John Hostettler was the decided favorite when he first announced and he remained so. Former College football coach Robby Wells dropped out of the Democratic primary to seek the nomination, but he drew very little support. Hostettler won the nomination and chose party Vice Chairman Randall Stufflebeam as his running mate.

Peace and Freedom nomination

Peace and Freedom candidates

  • Roseanne Barr, comedian, and actor from Hawaii (Nominee)
  • Stephen Durham, attorney from New York

Comedian, actor, and 2012 nominee Roseanne Barr decided to seek the nomination again. Barr was nominated easily and chose 2012 running mate Cindy Sheehan as her running mate.

Potential independent candidates who declined to run

General election campaign



Clinton ended up winning with 341 electoral votes to Trump's 191.

Johnson and the Libertarian Party took a record number of the popular vote this election, winning 18,560,423 votes.


Blue denotes a Clinton/Perez win and red denotes a Trump/Pence win