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1992 Democratic Party presidential primaries

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

1992 Democratic Party presidential primaries

← 1988 February 10 to June 9, 1992 1996 →
 
Bill Clinton.jpg
Jerry Brown (2003).JPG
Senator Paul Tsongas.jpg
Candidate Bill Clinton Jerry Brown Paul Tsongas
Home state Arkansas California Massachusetts
Delegate count 3,372 596 289
Contests won 37 6 9
Popular vote 10,482,411 4,071,232 3,656,010
Percentage 52.0% 20.2% 18.1%

 
Tom Harkin official portrait.jpg
Senator Bob Kerrey.jpg
Candidate Tom Harkin Bob Kerrey
Home state Iowa Nebraska
Delegate count 49 15
Contests won 3 1
Popular vote 280,304 318,457
Percentage 1.4% 1.6%

1992 Democratic presidential primaries by delegate allocation.svg
Results by delegate allocation

1992 Democratic presidential primaries popular vote.svg
Results by popular vote

     Bill Clinton      Jerry Brown

     Paul Tsongas      Tom Harkin      Bob Kerrey

Previous Democratic nominee

Michael Dukakis

Democratic nominee

Bill Clinton

The 1992 Democratic presidential primaries were the selection process by which voters of the Democratic Party chose its nominee for President of the United States in the 1992 U.S. presidential election. Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton was selected as the nominee through a series of primary elections and caucuses culminating in the 1992 Democratic National Convention held from July 13 to July 16, 1992, in New York City.

Background

Reforms

Although the McGovern-Fraser commission had recommended proportionality as early as 1972, this primary was the first to adopt the proportional 15% rule, still in place today, as the standard throughout the country. Any candidate receiving greater than 15% of the vote in a given congressional district (or in the case of New Jersey, state legislative district) would receive a proportional share of the apportioned delegates for that district or state.[1]

Schedule and results

Date

(daily totals)

Total pledged

delegates

Contest Delegates won and popular vote
Bill Clinton Jerry Brown Paul Tsongas Tom Harkin Bob Kerrey
February 10 49 Iowa
(caucus)

76 (2.81%)

51 (1.60%)

128 (4.11%)
49
2,314 (76.55%)

72 (2.41%)
February 18 18 New Hampshire 9
41,540 (24.78%)

13,659 (8.15%)
9
55,663 (33.20%)

17,063 (10.18%)

18,584 (11.08%)
February 23 23 Maine
(caucus)[2][a]
3
515 (15.13%)
7
994 (30.77%)
8
987 (29.31%)
1
174 (4.99%)

105 (3.01%)
February 25 15 South Dakota[3] 3
11,421 (19.10%)

2,304 (3.86%)

5,756 (9.62)
5
15,153 (25.23%)
7
23,974 (40.12%)
March 3

(380)

47 Colorado[4] 14
64,470 (26.90%)
18
69,073 (28.82%)
15
61,360 (25.61%)

5,866 (2.45%)

29,572 (12.34%)
76 Georgia[4] 54
259,907 (57.17%)

36,808 (8.10%)
22
109,148 (24.01%)

9,479 (2.09%)

22,033 (4.85%)
18 Idaho
(caucus)
(11.56%) (4.57%) (28.76%) (29.57%)
67 Maryland 29
189,905 (35.76%)

46,480 (8.75%)
38
230,490 (43.40%)

32,899 (6.20%)

27,035 (5.09)
78 Minnesota
(caucus)
(19.2%) (26.7%)
23 Utah
(caucus)
?
5.780 (18.27%)
?
8,971 (28.36%)
?
10,582 (33.45%)

1,274 (4.03%)

3,447 (10.90%)
71 Washington
(caucus)

561 (13.82%)
?
784 (19.32%)
?
1,299 (32.01%)

305 (7.52%)

249 (6.14%)
March 7 41 Arizona
(caucus)

10,607 (29.20%)

9,990 (27.50%)
?
12,496 (34.40%)

2,761 (7.60%)
43 South Carolina ?
73,221 (62.90%)

6,961 (5.98%)
?
21,338 (18.33%)

7,657 (6.58%)

566 (0.49%)
13 Wyoming
(caucus)
?
78 (28.57%)
?
63 (23.08%)

32 (11.72%)

39 (14.29%)
March 8 17 Nevada
(caucus)
?
355 (26.47%)
?
467 (34.83%)

264 (19.69%)

6 (0.45%)
13 (0.97%)
March 10
(Super Tuesday)
(777)
14 Delaware
(caucus)
?
520 (20.78%)
?
488 (19.50%)
?
755 (30.16%)
148 Florida ?
554,861 (50.79%)

133,156 (12.19%)
?
379,572 (34.75%)

13,302 (1.22%)

11,557 (1.06%)
14 Hawaii
(caucus)
?
1,552 (51.49%)

410 (13.60%)

431 (14.30%)

383 (12.71%)

12 (0.40%)
60 Louisiana ?
267,029 (69.46%)

25,480 (6.63%)

42,509 (11.06%)

4,033 (1.05%)

2,984 (0.78%)
94 Massachusetts
86,817 (10.95%)

115,746 (14.60%)
?
526,297 (66.38%)

3,764 (0.48%)

5,409 (0.68%)
39 Mississippi ?
139,893 (73.11%)

18,396 (9.61%)

15,538 (8.12%)

2,509 (1.31%)

1,660 (0.87%)
77 Missouri ?
10,148 (45.10%)

1,282 (5.70%)

2,295 (10.20%)
45 Oklahoma ?
293,266 (70.47%)
?
69,624 (16.69%)

14,015 (3.40%)

13,252 (3.20%)
22 Rhode Island ?
10,762 (21.22%)
?
9,541 (18.82%)
?
26,825 (52.90%)

319 (0.63%)

469 (0.92%)
68 Tennessee ?
214,485 (67.35%)

25,560 (8.02%)
?
61,717 (19.38%)

2,099 (0.66%)

1,638 (0.51%)
196 Texas ?
972,235 (65.56%)

118,869 (8.02%)
?
285,224 (19.23%)

19,618 (1.32%)

20,298 (1.37%)
March 17

(295)

164 Illinois ?
776,829 (51.65%)

220,346 (14.65%)
?
387,891 (25.79%)

30,710 (2.04%)

10,916 (0.73%)
131 Michigan ?
297,280 (50.73%)
?
97,017 (16.56%)
?
151,400 (25.84%)

6,265 (1.07%)

3,219 (0.55%)
March 19 ? Democrats Abroad ?
(27.00%)
?
(37.00%)

(7.00%)
14 North Dakota ?
(37%)

(7.68%)

(10.54%)

(6.96%)

(1.23%)
March 24 53 Connecticut ?
61,698 (35.64%)
?
64,472 (37.24%)
?
33,811 (19.53%)

1,919 (1.11%)

1,169 (0.68%)
March 31 14 Vermont
(caucus)
?
208 (17.20%)
?
573 (47.40%)

117 (9.68%)
April 2 13 Alaska
(caucus)[5]
?
340 (30.91%)
?
364 (33.09%)

14 (1.27%)
April 5 51 Puerto Rico[6] 51
62,273 (95.86%)

921 (1.42%)

59 (0.09%)

31 (0.05%)

930 (1.43%)
April 7 36 Kansas ?
82,145 (51.26%)

20,811 (12.99%)
?
24,413 (15.23%)

940 (0.59%)

2,215 (1.38%)
0 Minnesota
63,584 (31.14%)

62,474 (30.60%)

43,588 (21.35%)

4,077 (2.00%)

1,191 (0.58%)
244 New York ?
412,349 (40.92%)
?
264,278 (26.23%)
?
288,330 (28.61%)

11,535 (1.15%)

11,147 (1.11%)
82 Wisconsin ?
287,356 (37.19%)
?
266,207 (34.46%)
?
168,619 (21.83%)

5,395 (0.70%)

3,044 (0.39%)
April 11 78 Virginia
(caucus)[7]
?
1,820 (52.00%)

420 (12.00%)
April 28 169 Pennsylvania[8] ?
715,031 (56.48%)
?
325,543 (25.72%)

161,572 (12.76%)

21,013 (1.66%)

20,802 (1.64%)
May 5 77 Indiana[9] ?
301,905 (63.31%)
?
102,379 (21.47%)

58,215 (12.21%)

14,350 (3.01%)
84 North Carolina[10] ?
443,498 (54.10%)

71,984 (10.40%)

57,589 (8.32%)

5,891 (0.85%)

6,216 (0.90%)
17 Washington D.C.[11] ?
45,685 (73.87%)

57,589 (7.21%)

71,984 (10.41%)
May 12 25 Nebraska[12] ?
68,562 (45.53%)
?
31,673 (21.03%)

10,707 (7.11%)

4,239 (2.82%)
31 West Virginia[13] ?
227,815 (74.24%)

36,505 (11.90%)

21,271 (6.93%)

2,774 (0.90%)

3,152 (1.03%)
May 19 47 Oregon (45.10%) (31.18%) (10.48%)
0 Washington 62,171 (42.01%) 34,111 (23.05%) 18,981 (12.83%) 1,858 (1.26%) 1,489 (1.01%)
May 26 0 Idaho 27,004 (48.99%) 9,212 (16.71%)
52 Kentucky (56.08%) (8.29%) (4.88%) (1.93%) (0.88%)
May 27 36 Arkansas (68.05%) (11.02%)
June 2 55 Alabama (68.22%) (6.72%)
348 California ?
1,359,112 (47.47%)
?
1,150,460 (40.18%)
212,522 (7.42%) 33,935 (1.19%)
16 Montana (46.81%) (18.48%) (10.74%)
105 New Jersey (63.26%) (19.76%) (11.15%)
25 New Mexico (52.87%) (16.92%) (6.24%) (1.78%)
151 Ohio (61.24%) (18.94%) (10.63%) (2.44%) (2.20%)
June 9 0 North Dakota (14.52%)
Total pledged delegates

Candidates

During the aftermath of the Gulf War, President George H. W. Bush's approval ratings were high. At one point after the successful performance by U.S. forces in Kuwait, President Bush enjoyed an 89% approval rating.[14]

As a result of Bush's high popularity, major high-profile Democratic candidates feared a high likelihood of defeat in the 1992 general election. This fear was "captured perfectly by Saturday Night Live in a skit called 'Campaign '92: The Race to Avoid Being the Guy Who Loses to Bush,'" in which each prospective major candidate "tried to top the other in explaining why they were unfit to run" for the presidency.[15][16][17]

Mario Cuomo and Jesse Jackson declined to seek the Democratic nomination for president, as did U.S. Senator and eventual Vice-President Al Gore, whose son had been struck by a car and was undergoing extensive surgery and physical therapy.[18] However, Governors Bill Clinton and Jerry Brown and U.S. Senator Paul Tsongas opted to run for president.

Nominee

Candidate Most recent position Home state Campaign Popular

vote

Contests won Running mate
Bill Clinton
Bill Clinton.jpg
Governor of Arkansas
(1979–1981, 1983–1992)
Flag-map of Arkansas.svg

Arkansas
Clinton Gore 1992 bumper sticker 2013BSLine-1x7.jpg

(CampaignPositions)
10,482,411
(59.79%)
37

NY, NJ, PA, OH, WV

VA, NC, SC, GA, FL

MI, WI, IL, IN, KY

TN, AL, MS, LA, AR

NE, KS, OK, TX, NM

WY, MT, OR,CA, HI

DC, PR

Al Gore

Withdrew during primaries or convention

Candidate Most recent position Home state Campaign

Withdrawal date

Popular vote Contests won
Jerry Brown
Jerry Brown in 1978 crop.jpg
Governor of California
(1975–1983)
California

California
Withdrew at convention
4,071,232
(23.81%)
6
AK, CO, CT, ME, NV, VT
Paul Tsongas
Senator Paul Tsongas.jpg
U.S. Senator
from Massachusetts
(1979–1985)
Massachusetts

Massachusetts
Tsongas.gif

Withdrew: March 19
3,656,010
(12.19%)
9
AZ, DA, DE, MD, MA, NH, RI, UT, WA
Bob Kerrey
Senator Bob Kerrey.jpg
U.S. Senator
from Nebraska
(1989–2001)
Nebraska

Nebraska
Bobkerrey.gif

Withdrew: March 5
318,457
(0.76%)
1
SD
Tom Harkin
Tom Harkin official portrait.jpg
U.S. Senator
from Iowa
(1985–2015)
Iowa

Iowa
Harkin1992.gif

Withdrew: March 9
280,304
(1.41%)
3
ID caucus, IA, MN caucus

Other notable individuals campaigning for the nomination but receiving less than 1% of the national vote included:

Withdrew before primaries

Declined

Polling

Nationwide

Poll source Publication
Jerry Brown
Bill Clinton
Tom Harkin
Bob Kerrey
Paul Tsongas
Other
Undecided
New York Times/CBS News[20] Feb. 22, 1992 10% 29% 3% 4% 24% 4%[b] 26%
  1. ^ Source provides only preliminary results.
  2. ^ "Someone else" with 4%

State polling

New Hampshire

Poll source Publication Sample size MoE
Jerry Brown
Bill Clinton
Mario Cuomo
Tom Harkin
Bob Kerrey
Paul Tsongas
Other
Undecided
USA Today–CNN–Gallup[21] Feb. 12–14 600 V ±5% 6% 23% 14% 10% 39% 8%
Boston Globe–WBZ-TV[21] Feb. 13–14 400 LV ±5% 5% 25% 4% 11% 11% 32% 4% 8%
Mason-Dixon[21] Feb. 13–15 433 V ±5% 4% 21% 4% 9% 8% 34% 20%

Primary race

Clinton, a Southerner with experience governing a more conservative state, positioned himself as a centrist New Democrat. He prepared for a run in 1992 amidst a crowded field seeking to beat the incumbent President George H. W. Bush. In the aftermath of the Persian Gulf War, Bush seemed unbeatable, but an economic recession—which ultimately proved to be small by historical standards—spurred the Democrats on. Tom Harkin won his native Iowa without much surprise. Clinton, meanwhile, was still a relatively unknown national candidate before the primary season when a woman named Gennifer Flowers appeared in the press to reveal allegations of an affair.[22] Clinton sought damage control by appearing on 60 Minutes with his wife, Hillary Clinton, for an interview with Steve Kroft. Paul Tsongas of Massachusetts won the primary in neighboring New Hampshire but Clinton's second-place finish – strengthened by Clinton's speech labeling himself "The Comeback Kid" – re-energized his campaign. Clinton swept nearly all of the Southern Super Tuesday primaries, making him the solid front runner. Jerry Brown, however, began to run a surprising insurgent campaign, particularly through use of a 1-800 number to receive grassroots funding. Brown "seemed to be the most left-wing and right-wing man in the field. [He] called for term limits, a flat tax, and the abolition of the Department of Education."[23] Brown scored surprising wins in Connecticut and Colorado and seemed poised to overtake Clinton.

On March 17, Tsongas left the race when he decisively lost both the Illinois and Michigan primaries to Clinton, with Brown as a distant third. Exactly one week later, Brown eked out a narrow win in the bitterly fought Connecticut primary. Tsongas subsequently won the Delaware caucus two months later despite his withdrawal. As the press focused on the primaries in New York and Wisconsin, which were both to be held on the same day, Brown, who had taken the lead in polls in both states, made a serious gaffe: he announced to an audience of various leaders of New York City's Jewish community that, if nominated, he would consider the Reverend Jesse Jackson as a vice presidential candidate. Jackson was still a controversial figure in that community and Brown's polling numbers suffered. On April 7, he lost narrowly to Bill Clinton in Wisconsin (37-34), and dramatically in New York (41-26). In addition, his "willingness to break with liberal orthodoxy on taxes led to denunciations from the party regulars, but by the end of the race he had been embraced by much of the Left."[23]

Although Brown continued to campaign in a number of states, he won no further primaries. Despite this, he still had a sizable number of delegates, and a big win in his home state of California would have deprived Clinton of sufficient support to win the nomination. After nearly a month of intense campaigning and multiple debates between the two candidates, Clinton managed to defeat Brown in the California primary by a margin of 47% to 40%.

The convention

The convention met in New York City, and the official tally was:

Clinton chose U.S. Senator Albert A. Gore Jr. (D-Tennessee) to be his running mate on July 9, 1992. Choosing Gore, who is from Clinton's neighboring state of Tennessee, went against the popular strategy of balancing a Southern candidate with a Northern partner. Gore did serve to balance the ticket in other ways, as he was perceived as strong on foreign policy and environmental issues, while Clinton was not.[24] Also, Gore's similarities to Clinton allowed him to really push some of his key campaign themes, such as centrism and generational change.[25]

Before Gore's selection, other politicians were mentioned as a possible running-mate, e.g. Bob Kerrey, Dick Gephardt, Mario Cuomo, Indiana Representative Lee H. Hamilton, Pennsylvania Senator Harris Wofford, Florida Senator Bob Graham, and Massachusetts Senator John Kerry.

The Democratic Convention in New York City was essentially a solidification of the party around Clinton and Gore, though there was controversy over whether Jerry Brown, who did not endorse Clinton, would be allowed to speak. Brown did speak at the convention by seconding his own nomination.

Another additional controversy concerned Pennsylvania Governor Bob Casey, who sought a speaking slot at the convention but was not granted one. Casey complained that it was because of his outspoken pro-life views: he had warned the platform committee that Democrats were committing political suicide because of their support for abortion rights.[26] Clinton supporters have said that Casey was not allowed to speak because he had not endorsed the ticket.[27]

Popular vote results

Total popular vote number in primaries:[28]

Convention tallies

For President:[29]

Vice presidential nomination

Clinton selected Tennessee Senator and 1988 candidate Al Gore to be his running-mate. Among others confirmed possible V.P. nominees, who were finalists of Clinton's selection were:

Clinton's list of finalists did not include Senator Bill Bradley of New Jersey and Governor of New York Mario Cuomo, who publicly disavowed interest in Vice Presidency.[30]

Convention tally for Vice President

In popular media

The story of the race was covered in the 1993 documentary film The War Room and fictionalized into the 1996 novel and 1998 film Primary Colors.

See also

Bibliography

  • My Life by Bill Clinton, 2004, Vintage. ISBN 1-4000-3003-X

References

  1. ^ "Larry J. Sabato's Crystal Ball  » The Modern History of the Democratic Presidential Primary, 1972–2008". www.centerforpolitics.org. Retrieved 23 March 2018.
  2. ^ "Maine caucus ends in dead heat between Tsongas, Brown". The Globe and Mail. 24 Feb 1992. p. 10.
  3. ^ Berkes, Richard (26 Feb 1992). "Kerrey Is South Dakota Victor". The New York Times. p. A1.
  4. ^ a b Edsall, Thomas (4 Mar 1992). "Brown Prevails In Colorado Test". The Washington Post. p. A1.
  5. ^ https://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=38947
  6. ^ https://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=760620
  7. ^ https://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=642019
  8. ^ https://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=55661
  9. ^ https://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=419355
  10. ^ https://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=270804
  11. ^ https://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=38981
  12. ^ https://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=419359
  13. ^ https://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=419365
  14. ^ Kagay, Michael R. (May 22, 1991). "History Suggests Bush's Popularity will eventually ebb". The New York Times. Retrieved May 1, 2010.
  15. ^ Dickerson, John (2016). Whistlestop: My Favorite Stories from Presidential Campaign History. Grand Central Publishing. p. 68. ISBN 9781455540464.
  16. ^ Popkin, Samuel L. (2012). The Candidate: What it Takes to Win - and Hold - the White House. Oxford University Press. p. 20. ISBN 9780199939411. the guy who loses to bush.
  17. ^ Saturday Night Live (November 2, 1991). Campaign '92: The Race to Avoid Being the Guy who Loses to Bush (NBC.com). Retrieved June 9, 2019.
  18. ^ "Al Gore's son buster for drugs in hybrid". Reuters. July 5, 2007.
  19. ^ "Jackson decides not to run in '92". Google News Search Archive. Eugene, OR: Eugene Register-Guard. November 3, 1991. p. 3A. Retrieved 9 August 2020.
  20. ^ Apple, R.W. (22 Feb 1992). "Tsongas Gains Substantially, Pulling Near Clinton in Poll". The New York Times. p. 1.
  21. ^ a b c "Latest poll shows Tsongas holding lead over Clinton". The Hartford Courant. 16 Feb 1992. p. A25.
  22. ^ "Declaration of Gennifer Flowers". The Washington Post. March 13, 1998. Retrieved March 20, 2008.
  23. ^ a b Walker, Jesse (2009-11-01) Five Faces of Jerry Brown Archived 2011-06-29 at the Wayback Machine, The American Conservative
  24. ^ Ifill, Gwen (1992-07-10). "Clinton Selects Senator Gore Of Tennessee As Running Mate". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-03-27.
  25. ^ "U.S. Senate: Albert A. Gore, Jr., 45th Vice President (1993-2001)". www.senate.gov. Retrieved 23 March 2018.
  26. ^ The Atlanta Journal and The Atlanta Constitution May 19, 1992 Page: A/8
  27. ^ "The myth of Bob Casey's 1992 non-speech". Brendan Nyhan. 2008-08-07. Retrieved 2016-08-03.
  28. ^ "US President - D Primaries Race - Feb 01, 1992". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2016-08-03.
  29. ^ "US President - D Convention Race - Jul 13, 1992". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2016-08-03.
  30. ^ a b Ifill, Gwen (July 10, 1992). "THE 1992 CAMPAIGN: Democrats; CLINTON SELECTS SENATOR GORE OF TENNESSEE AS RUNNING MATE". The New York Times. Retrieved May 1, 2010.
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