Elections and Voting

How many states can a candidate lose and still win the election?

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2016-10-27 18:08:04
2016-10-27 18:08:04

When referring to the Electoral College and Presidential elections, a candidate can win by taking:

California (55 electoral votes)

Texas (28 electoral votes)

Florida (29 electoral votes)

New York (29 electoral votes)

Illinois (20 electoral votes)

Pennsylvania (20 electoral votes)

Ohio (18 electoral votes)

Georgia (16 electoral votes)

Michigan (16 electoral votes)

New Jersey (15 electoral votes)

Virginia (14 electoral votes)

- a total of 11 states for 270 electoral votes

which means a candidate can lose the other 39 states and District of Columbia and still win the election.

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In the US, the loser could win 39 states plus DC and still lose if he lost all of the 11 largest states.


A candidate could in theory lose 39 states as well as DC and still win the election. Winning just the eleven most populous states is sufficient for a majority of the electoral votes. See the related question for more information.


39 states plus D.C. could be won by the loser if he won only the smallest 39 states. Winning the largest 11 states gives the required majority.



they can lose the electoral college vote if the representatives and senators in the electoral college feel that the candidate should not win their state over in the election.


39 states including the District of Columbia. If you add 39 states with few electoral vote number, it will add up to be fewer than 270, which is the goal.


The total popular vote can be won by a presidential candidate who loses the election because of the electoral college. Each state is allowed a certain number of votes in the electoral college based upon its population. Therefore, states with larger populations carry more weight than less populous states.


The president is actually electors by electors chosen from each state and not by popular vote. Most states award their electors in a winner-take-all basis; the leading vote-getter in the state gets all the electoral votes . Therefore a candidate can win by huge majorities in the states he wins and lose by narrow margins in the states he loses and so pile up a majority of popular votes.


It is possible that a candidate could win the "national" popular vote total but lose the electoral vote total. However, the electoral vote of every state accurately reflects the popular vote within that state. A candidate could win the electoral votes in a large state such as California winning the state by a huge margin. However the opposing candidate could win the electoral votes in other states because a majority of the voters in those states vote for the opposing candidate.


This possibility is part of the election process set by the main part of the US Constitution and is not due to any amendment.


The United States requires 270 electoral votes for a candidate to win the presidency. Since there are a total of 538 votes available, a candidate can lose with 268 votes.


In 1832 Lincoln ran for the Illinois Legislature and lost.


Such is possible because the election is not by direct popular vote but rather by electors that are chosen state by state on a winner take all basis. Therefore the losing candidate can win some states by a huge majority and pile up huge numbers of popular votes whereas the winning candidates wins a majority of states by slim margins.


Because of the electoral college.The way US Presidential elections work is that the candidate who wins the popular vote in a state receives all the electoral votes of that state (there are a couple of states that do it differently, but most of them are "winner take all").It doesn't matter if you win in that state by one vote or unanimously, you get all the electoral votes. So if you win the states you win by large margins and lose the states you lose by small margins, it's entirely possible for the overall number of votes to show you as the winner, but for you to lose due to receiving fewer electoral votes than your opponent.


US Presidents are not elected by popular vote, they are elected by electoral votes, cast by the electors from each state and DC. The electors are elected by popular vote and pledge to vote for one particular candidate.Most states use a winner-take-all method for choosing electors. The presidential candidate who wins the popular vote in a state wins all the electors which means he will get all the electoral votes of that state even if he wins by only onepopular vote. Therefore it is possible for a losing candidate to win by huge majorities in the states he wins and lose by tiny majorities in several large states and so lose the electoral vote and the election, but receive an overall majority of popular vote.In fact one could theoretically win by winning by one vote in each of the eleven largest states and getting no votes at all in the other 39 states and DC.


It is possible that a candidate could win the "national" popular vote total but lose the electoral vote total. However, the electoral vote of every state accurately reflects the popular vote within that state. A candidate could win the electoral votes in a large state such as California winning the state by a huge margin. However, the opposing candidate could win the electoral votes in other states because a majority of the voters in those states vote for the opposing candidate.


It is possible that a candidate could win the "national" popular vote total but lose the electoral vote total. However, the electoral vote of every state accurately reflects the popular vote within that state. A candidate could win the electoral votes in a large state such as California winning the state by a huge margin. However, the opposing candidate could win the electoral votes in other states because a majority of the voters in those states vote for the opposing candidate.


It is possible that a candidate could win the "national" popular vote total but lose the electoral vote total. However, the electoral vote of every state accurately reflects the popular vote within that state. A candidate could win the electoral votes in a large state such as California winning the state by a huge margin. However, the opposing candidate could win the electoral votes in other states because a majority of the voters in those states vote for the opposing candidate.


It is possible that a candidate could win the "national" popular vote total but lose the electoral vote total. However, the electoral vote of every state accurately reflects the popular vote within that state. A candidate could win the electoral votes in a large state such as California winning the state by a huge margin. However, the opposing candidate could win the electoral votes in other states because a majority of the voters in those states vote for the opposing candidate.


Woodrow Wilson. In the process, TR became the only third-party presidential candidate to finish in second place to date.


no- not necessarily. The final election is made by the electors of the electoral college who are apportioned by state---winner take all in most states. Thus a candidate can pile up popular votes by winning with a huge majority in the states that he wins and losing the states that he loses by a slim majority and still lose the election by losing too many states. Hayes, Benjamin Harrison and George W. Bush in 2000 all were elected without winning the popular vote.


Tom Ganley lost the election. In a year that Republicans had a big advantage he still managed to lose. And spent allot of money doing it.


The candidate can lose the popular vote but still win the election because the Electoral College really elects the President. The popular vote is really only to elect the electors. A candidate could win the popular vote by winning with huge margins in a few state and losing by narrow margins in eleven large states and end up with a losing electoral total. This actually happened in 1876,1884 and 2000. In 1824, Andrew Jackson led in both popular vote and electoral vote but lost because he did not win a majority of the electoral vote.


It is possible that a candidate could win the "national" popular vote total but lose the electoral vote total. However, the electoral vote of every state accurately reflects the popular vote within that state. A candidate could win the electoral votes in a large state such as California winning the state by a huge margin. However, the opposing candidate could win the electoral votes in other states because a majority of the voters in those states vote for the opposing candidate. The President of the United States is the president for the people of all 50 states, not just the President for California, New York and a few of the other large states.


Theoretically, in the US, a candidate could win over 99% of the popular vote and lose the presidential election by winning 100% of the vote in states adding up to 268 electoral votes and lose the rest of the states (worth 270 electoral votes) by only a fraction of one percent, but realistically this would never happen since it is rare for most states to vote stronger than 70-30 in favor of either candidate, and most states are usually much closer than that.In reality, winning the popular vote and losing the electoral college only happens when the candidates are very close in the popular vote, such as in the 2000 election where Gore won the popular vote by around a half of a percent and Bush won the electoral college. I remember reading on a political site, fivethirtyeight.com, that anywhere up to a four percent win in the popular vote is where that situation has a realistic chance of occurring.Hope this answers your question.



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