1988 United States presidential election in Idaho

The 1988 United States presidential election in Idaho took place on November 8, 1988. All 50 states and the District of Columbia, were part of the 1988 United States presidential election. State voters chose four electors to the Electoral College, which selected the president and vice president.

1988 United States presidential election in Idaho

← 1984 November 8, 1988 1992 →
  1988 Bush (cropped).jpg Michael Dukakis color photograph.png
Nominee George H. W. Bush Michael Dukakis
Party Republican Democratic
Home state Texas Massachusetts
Running mate Dan Quayle Lloyd Bentsen
Electoral vote 4 0
Popular vote 253,881 147,272
Percentage 62.08% 36.01%

Idaho Presidential Election Results 1988.svg
County Results

President before election

Ronald Reagan
Republican

Elected President

George H. W. Bush
Republican

Idaho was won by incumbent United States Vice President George H. W. Bush of Texas, who was running against Massachusetts Governor Michael Dukakis. Bush ran with Indiana Senator Dan Quayle as Vice President, and Dukakis ran with Texas Senator Lloyd Bentsen.

Idaho weighed in for this election as eighteen percentage points more Republican than the national average and with 62.08% of the popular vote, Idaho would be the third most Republican state in the nation behind Utah and New Hampshire.[1]

Partisan backgroundEdit

The presidential election of 1988 was a very partisan election for Idaho, with over 98% of the electorate voting for either the Democratic or Republican parties, and only four parties appearing on the ballot.[2] All but one county gave either Dukakis or Bush an outright majority; the exception was Bonner County, which gave Bush a very narrow plurality. Bush's best county was Madison County, which gave him 84.87% of its vote--Bush's second-strongest county performance in the nation after the famous Unionist Republican bastion of Jackson County in Kentucky.[3] Dukakis' best county was Shoshone County, where he received 60.49% of the vote.

As of the 2020 presidential election, this is the last election in which Blaine County voted for a Republican presidential candidate.[4]

Republican victoryEdit

Bush won Idaho by a powerful 26.1% margin; his 62.1% vote share made it his third-best state in the nation, after Utah and New Hampshire. The Mountain West as a whole had begun trending Republican from 1952 on, after having been a swing region that was critical to Democratic victories when they did occur between 1896 and 1948.[5] However, the realignment was particularly pronounced in Idaho; in 1964, a mere 16 years after having backed Truman over Dewey, Idaho came within less than 2% of voting for Barry Goldwater, far closer than any other state in the region apart from Goldwater's native Arizona and indeed far closer than any other Johnson state anywhere apart from Florida.

In 1988, an election influenced by the 1980s farm crisis, several Mountain States (most notably Colorado and Montana) were shakier than usual in their support for the Republican ticket, but Idaho remained not only in the Republican column, but far more Republican than the nation overall. Bush dominated almost all of rural Idaho, and also scored strong wins in the population centers of Ada County (Boise), Canyon County (Nampa), Bonneville County (Idaho Falls), and Twin Falls County (Twin Falls), in all of which he exceeded 60% of the vote. He also won, albeit less powerfully, the other two of Idaho's six largest counties, Bannock (Pocatello) and Kootenai (Coeur d'Alene).

However, Dukakis did manage to carry a cluster of counties in North Idaho, centered on the Silver Valley, a region historically dominated by mining. This made Dukakis the first Democrat to carry any counties in the Gem State since 1976.

ResultsEdit

1988 United States presidential election in Idaho
Party Candidate Votes Percentage Electoral votes
Republican George H. W. Bush 253,881 62.08% 4
Democratic Michael Dukakis 147,272 36.01% 0
Libertarian Ron Paul 5,313 1.30% 0
Independent Lenora Fulani 2,502 0.61% 0
Totals 408,968 100.00% 4

Results by countyEdit

County George Herbert Walker Bush
Republican
Michael Stanley Dukakis
Democratic
Ronald Ernest Paul
Libertarian
Leonora Branch Fulani
Independent
Margin Total votes cast
# % # % # % # % # %
Ada 54,951 62.92% 30,525 34.95% 1,289 1.48% 569 0.65% 24,426 27.97% 87,334
Adams 1,107 61.53% 643 35.74% 34 1.89% 15 0.83% 464 25.79% 1,799
Bannock 14,986 52.40% 13,074 45.71% 373 1.30% 168 0.59% 1,912 6.69% 28,601
Bear Lake 2,084 69.93% 867 29.09% 16 0.54% 13 0.44% 1,217 40.84% 2,980
Benewah 1,650 50.96% 1,518 46.88% 41 1.27% 29 0.90% 132 4.08% 3,238
Bingham 10,131 68.89% 4,346 29.55% 143 0.97% 85 0.58% 5,785 39.34% 14,705
Blaine 3,130 54.39% 2,498 43.41% 86 1.49% 41 0.71% 632 10.98% 5,755
Boise 1,044 61.05% 620 36.26% 31 1.81% 15 0.88% 424 24.80% 1,710
Bonner 5,721 49.94% 5,555 48.49% 125 1.09% 54 0.47% 166 1.45% 11,455
Bonneville 22,613 75.01% 7,032 23.33% 354 1.17% 148 0.49% 15,581 51.68% 30,147
Boundary 1,800 56.21% 1,336 41.72% 34 1.06% 32 1.00% 464 14.49% 3,202
Butte 899 62.26% 521 36.08% 18 1.25% 6 0.42% 378 26.18% 1,444
Camas 288 65.90% 136 31.12% 9 2.06% 4 0.92% 152 34.78% 437
Canyon 21,426 66.14% 10,207 31.51% 597 1.84% 166 0.51% 11,219 34.63% 32,396
Caribou 2,239 71.22% 867 27.58% 28 0.89% 10 0.32% 1,372 43.64% 3,144
Cassia 5,345 73.34% 1,833 25.15% 59 0.81% 51 0.70% 3,512 48.19% 7,288
Clark 281 66.75% 133 31.59% 2 0.48% 5 1.19% 148 35.15% 421
Clearwater 1,659 45.87% 1,861 51.45% 48 1.33% 49 1.35% -202 -5.58% 3,617
Custer 1,253 66.09% 616 32.49% 17 0.90% 10 0.53% 637 33.60% 1,896
Elmore 3,756 63.46% 2,078 35.11% 61 1.03% 24 0.41% 1,678 28.35% 5,919
Franklin 2,992 77.29% 806 20.82% 42 1.08% 31 0.80% 2,186 56.47% 3,871
Fremont 3,401 73.11% 1,178 25.32% 50 1.07% 23 0.49% 2,223 47.79% 4,652
Gem 2,926 56.90% 2,064 40.14% 111 2.16% 41 0.80% 862 16.76% 5,142
Gooding 2,908 59.64% 1,872 38.39% 60 1.23% 36 0.74% 1,036 21.25% 4,876
Idaho 3,541 60.31% 2,198 37.44% 98 1.67% 34 0.58% 1,343 22.88% 5,871
Jefferson 5,295 79.64% 1,198 18.02% 126 1.90% 30 0.45% 4,097 61.62% 6,649
Jerome 3,830 64.32% 1,985 33.33% 102 1.71% 38 0.64% 1,845 30.98% 5,955
Kootenai 15,093 55.63% 11,621 42.83% 249 0.92% 167 0.62% 3,472 12.80% 27,130
Latah 6,367 48.47% 6,544 49.82% 134 1.02% 91 0.69% -177 -1.35% 13,136
Lemhi 2,378 66.24% 1,157 32.23% 42 1.69% 13 0.52% 1,221 34.01% 3,590
Lewis 786 48.76% 807 50.06% 12 0.74% 7 0.43% -21 -1.30% 1,612
Lincoln 918 60.20% 574 37.64% 22 1.44% 11 0.72% 344 22.56% 1,525
Madison 6,197 84.87% 1,009 13.82% 72 0.99% 24 0.33% 5,188 71.05% 7,302
Minidoka 4,623 65.73% 2,290 32.56% 75 1.07% 45 0.64% 2,333 33.17% 7,033
Nez Perce 7,027 46.78% 7,754 51.62% 137 0.91% 102 0.68% -727 -4.84% 15,020
Oneida 1,269 70.11% 508 28.07% 30 1.66% 3 0.17% 761 42.04% 1,810
Owyhee 1,707 64.81% 848 32.19% 61 2.32% 18 0.68% 859 32.61% 2,634
Payette 3,786 65.17% 1,900 32.71% 79 1.36% 44 0.76% 1,886 32.47% 5,809
Power 1,838 61.66% 1,095 36.73% 28 0.94% 20 0.67% 743 24.92% 2,981
Shoshone 2,134 38.20% 3,379 60.49% 36 0.64% 37 0.66% -1,245 -22.29% 5,586
Teton 982 64.31% 531 34.77% 8 0.52% 6 0.39% 451 29.54% 1,527
Twin Falls 13,243 63.87% 7,078 34.14% 263 1.27% 150 0.72% 6,165 29.73% 20,734
Valley 1,897 59.37% 1,251 39.15% 29 0.91% 18 0.56% 646 20.22% 3,195
Washington 2,380 61.98% 1,359 35.39% 82 2.14% 19 0.49% 1,021 26.59% 3,840
Totals 253,881 62.08% 147,272 36.01% 5,313 1.30% 2,502 0.61% 106,609 26.07% 408,968

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "1988 Presidential Election Statistics". Dave Leip’s Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections. Retrieved 2018-03-05.
  2. ^ "1988 Presidential General Election Results - Idaho". Dave Leip’s Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections. Retrieved 2017-12-29.
  3. ^ Dave Leip’s U.S. Election Atlas; 1988 Presidential Election Statistics
  4. ^ Sullivan, Robert David; ‘How the Red and Blue Map Evolved Over the Past Century’; America Magazine in The National Catholic Review; June 29, 2016
  5. ^ Paulson, Arthur C. (2000). Realignment and Party Revival: Understanding American Electoral Politics at the Turn of the Twenty-first Century. Greenwood Publishing Group. ISBN 978-0-275-96865-6.