1992 United States presidential election

The 1992 United States presidential election was the 52nd quadrennial presidential election, held on Tuesday, November 3, 1992. Democratic Governor Bill Clinton of Arkansas defeated incumbent Republican President George H. W. Bush and independent businessman Ross Perot of Texas. The election marked the end of a period of Republican dominance in American presidential politics that began in 1968 (with 1976 being the sole exception), and also marked the end of 12 years of Republican rule of the White House, as well as the end of the Greatest Generation's 32-year American rule and the beginning of the baby boomers' 28-year dominance until 2020. It was the last time the incumbent president failed to win a second term until Donald Trump in 2020.

1992 United States presidential election

← 1988 November 3, 1992 1996 →

538 members of the Electoral College
270 electoral votes needed to win
Turnout58.1%[1] Increase 5.3 pp
Nominee Bill Clinton George H. W. Bush Ross Perot
Party Democratic Republican Independent
Home state Arkansas Texas Texas
Running mate Al Gore Dan Quayle James Stockdale
Electoral vote 370 168 0
States carried 32 + DC 18 0
Popular vote 44,909,889 39,104,550 19,743,821
Percentage 43.0% 37.4% 18.9%

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Presidential election results map. Blue denotes states won by Clinton/Gore and red denotes those won by Bush/Quayle. Numbers indicate electoral votes cast by each state and the District of Columbia.

President before election

George H. W. Bush

Elected President

Bill Clinton

Bush had alienated many of the conservatives in his party by breaking his 1988 campaign pledge against raising taxes, but he fended off a primary challenge from paleoconservative commentator Pat Buchanan. Bush's popularity following his success in the Gulf War dissuaded high-profile Democratic candidates like Mario Cuomo from entering the 1992 Democratic primaries. Clinton, a leader of the centrist Democratic Leadership Council, established himself as the front-runner for the Democratic nomination by sweeping the Super Tuesday primaries. He defeated former Governor of California Jerry Brown, former Massachusetts Senator Paul Tsongas, and other candidates to win his party's nomination, and chose Tennessee Senator Al Gore as his running mate. Billionaire Ross Perot launched an independent campaign, emphasizing his opposition to the North American Free Trade Agreement and his plan to reduce the national debt.

The economy had recovered from a recession in the spring of 1991, followed by 19 consecutive months of economic growth, but perceptions of the economy's slow growth harmed Bush, for he had inherited a substantial economic boom from his predecessor Ronald Reagan. Bush's greatest strength, foreign policy, was regarded as much less important following the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War, as well as the relatively peaceful climate in the Middle East after the Gulf War. Perot led in several polls taken in June 1992, but severely damaged his candidacy by temporarily dropping out of the race in July. The Bush campaign criticized Clinton's character and emphasized Bush's foreign policy successes, while Clinton focused on the economy.

Clinton won a plurality in the popular vote and a majority of the electoral vote, breaking a streak of three consecutive Republican victories. He won states in every region of the country; he swept the Northeast and the West Coast, marking the start of Democratic dominance in both regions in both presidential and statewide elections. Clinton also performed well in the eastern Midwest, the Mountain West, Appalachia, and parts of the South. This election was the first time a Democrat had won the presidency without Texas since its statehood and North Carolina since 1844. This was also the last time to date that the state of Montana voted Democratic in a presidential election, and the last time until 2020 that Georgia did so. This was also the last time Colorado voted Democratic until 2008. Clinton flipped a total of 22 states that had voted Republican in the election of 1988. Clinton would win with the smallest vote share of the national vote since Woodrow Wilson in 1912, when the Republican Party experienced a drastic split.

Perot won 18.9% of the popular vote, the highest share of the vote won by a candidate outside of the two major parties since 1912. Although he failed to win any electoral votes, he finished second in two states (behind Bush in Utah and behind Clinton in Maine) and found significant support in every state, resulting in no state giving an absolute majority to any candidate except Clinton's home state of Arkansas. As such, this is the final election to date in which the Democratic nominee won less than 50% of the vote in California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont; and in which the Republican nominee won less than 50% in Alabama, Alaska, Idaho, Kansas, and Nebraska. It is also the third and final election since the Civil War in which a Republican or Democratic nominee failed to break 50% in a single state (with the exception of Arkansas), the first two being 1912 for William Howard Taft and 1984 for Walter Mondale. As of 2023, this is the last time that either a Democratic or Republican candidate received less than 40% of the popular vote.

Democratic Party nomination

Democratic Party (United States)
1992 Democratic Party ticket
Bill Clinton Al Gore
for President for Vice President
40th and 42nd
Governor of Arkansas
(1979–1981, 1983–1992)
U.S. Senator
from Tennessee
Democratic candidates:



Following the successful performance by U.S. and coalition forces in the Persian Gulf War, President George H. W. Bush's approval ratings were 89%. His re-election was considered very likely; several high-profile candidates, such as Mario Cuomo and Jesse Jackson refused to seek the Democratic nomination. Senator Al Gore refused to seek the nomination due to the fact his son had been struck by a car and was undergoing surgery and physical therapy. However, Tom Harkin, Paul Tsongas, Jerry Brown, Larry Agran, Bob Kerrey, Douglas Wilder and Bill Clinton chose to run as candidates.

U.S. Senator Tom Harkin (Iowa) ran as a populist liberal with labor union support. Former U.S. Senator Paul Tsongas (Mass.) highlighted his political independence and fiscal conservatism. Former California Governor Jerry Brown, who had run for the Democratic nomination in 1976 and 1980, declared a significant reform agenda, including Congressional term limits, campaign finance reform, and the adoption of a flat income tax. Nebraska Senator Bob Kerrey was an attractive candidate based on his business and military background, but made several gaffes on the campaign trail. Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton positioned himself as a centrist, or New Democrat. He was relatively unknown nationally before the primary season. That quickly changed however, when Gennifer Flowers alleged an extramarital affair. Clinton denied the story, appearing on 60 Minutes with his wife, Hillary Clinton; in 1998, he admitted the affair.[2]

The primary began with Harkin winning his native Iowa as expected. Tsongas won the New Hampshire primary on February 18, but Clinton's second-place finish, helped by his speech labeling himself "The Comeback Kid," energized his campaign. Brown won the Maine caucus and Kerrey won South Dakota. Clinton won his first primary in Georgia. Tsongas won the Utah and Maryland primaries and a caucus in Washington. Harkin won caucuses in Idaho and Minnesota while Jerry Brown won Colorado. Kerrey dropped out two days later. Clinton won the South Carolina and Wyoming primaries and Tsongas won Arizona. Harkin dropped out. Brown won the Nevada caucus. Clinton swept nearly all of the Super Tuesday primaries on March 10 making him the solid front runner. Clinton won the Michigan and Illinois primaries. Tsongas dropped out after finishing 3rd in Michigan. Brown, however, began to pick up steam, aided by using a phone number to receive funding from small donors. Brown scored surprising wins in Connecticut, Vermont and Alaska. As the race moved to the primaries in New York and Wisconsin, Brown had taken the lead in polls in both states. Then he made a serious gaffe by announcing to an audience of New York City's Jewish community that he would consider Reverend Jesse Jackson as a vice presidential candidate; Jackson had offended many Jewish people with remarks he had made during his own presidential campaigns.[3] Clinton won dramatically in New York (41%–26%) and closely in Wisconsin (37%–34%). Clinton then proceeded to win a long streak of primaries leading up to Brown's home state of California. Clinton won this state 48% to 41% and secured the delegates needed to lock the nomination.

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

Clinton chose U.S. Senator Al Gore (D-Tennessee) to be his running mate on July 9, 1992. Choosing fellow Southerner Gore went against the popular strategy of balancing a Southern candidate with a Northern partner. Gore served to balance the ticket in other ways, as he was perceived as strong on family values and environmental issues, while Clinton was not.[4] Also, Gore's similarities to Clinton allowed him to push some of his key campaign themes, such as centrism and generational change.[5]

Republican Party nomination

Republican Party (United States)
1992 Republican Party ticket
George H. W. Bush Dan Quayle
for President for Vice President
President of the United States
Vice President of the United States
Republican candidates:

Paleoconservative journalist Pat Buchanan was the primary opponent of President Bush; Ron Paul, the Libertarian Party's presidential nominee in 1988, had planned to run against the President, but dropped out shortly after Buchanan's entry in December. Buchanan's best showing was in the New Hampshire primary on February 18, 1992—where Bush won by a 53–38% margin.[6] President Bush won 73% of all primary votes, with 9,199,463 votes. Buchanan won 2,899,488 votes; unpledged delegates won 287,383 votes, and David Duke, Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan, won 119,115 votes. Just over 100,000 votes were cast for all other candidates, half of which were write-in votes for H. Ross Perot.[7] Former Minnesota Governor Harold Stassen, who had run for President 9 times since 1944, also mounted his final campaign.

President George H. W. Bush and Vice President Dan Quayle easily won renomination by the Republican Party. However, the success of the opposition forced the moderate Bush to move further to the right than in the previous election, and to incorporate many socially conservative planks in the party platform. Bush allowed Buchanan to give a prime time address at the Republican National Convention in Houston, Texas, and his "Culture War" speech alienated Liberal Republicans.

With intense pressure on the Buchanan delegates to relent, the tally for president went as follows:

Vice President Dan Quayle was renominated by voice vote.

Ross Perot candidacy

1992 independent ticket
Ross Perot James Stockdale
for President for Vice President
President and CEO of
Perot Systems
President of the Naval War College
Ross Perot was on the ballot in every state; in six states (Alaska, Arkansas, Connecticut, Louisiana, Oregon, Pennsylvania) Perot was placed on the ballot through the formation of a political party supporting his candidacy. His electoral performance in each of those states led to those parties being given ballot-qualified status.

The public's concern about the federal budget deficit and fears of professional politicians allowed the independent candidacy of billionaire Texan Ross Perot to explode on the scene in dramatic fashion—at one point Perot was leading the major party candidates in the polls.[8] Perot crusaded against the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), and internal and external national debt, tapping into voters' potential fear of the deficit. His volunteers succeeded in collecting enough signatures to get his name on the ballot in all 50 states. In June, Perot led the national public opinion polls with support from 39% of the voters (versus 31% for Bush and 25% for Clinton).[8] Perot severely damaged his credibility by dropping out of the presidential contest in July and remaining out of the race for several weeks before re-entering. He compounded this damage by eventually claiming, without evidence, that his withdrawal was due to Republican operatives attempting to disrupt his daughter's wedding.[9]

Perot and retired Vice Admiral James Stockdale drew 19,743,821 votes (19% of the popular vote).

Minor parties and independents

Minor party candidates, 1992
Libertarian New Alliance Natural Law Populist U.S. Taxpayers' National Economic
Andre Marrou Lenora Fulani John Hagelin Bo Gritz Howard Phillips Lyndon LaRouche
Alaska State

Psychologist and
political activist
and researcher
political activist
political activist
Political activist

Libertarian Party nomination

Andre Marrou was on the ballot in every state.

Libertarian candidates:

The 6th Libertarian Party National Convention was held in Chicago, Illinois. There, the Libertarian Party nominated Andre Marrou, former Alaska State Representative and the Party's 1988 vice presidential candidate, for president. Nancy Lord was his running mate.

Marrou and Lord drew 291,627 votes (0.28% of the popular vote).

New Alliance Party nomination

Lenora Fulani was on the ballot in thirty-nine states (352 Electoral Votes). Those states with a lighter shade are states in which she was an official write-in candidate.

New Alliance candidate:

Lenora Fulani, who was the 1988 presidential nominee of the New Alliance Party, received a second consecutive nomination from the Party in 1992. Unlike in 1988, Fulani failed to gain ballot access in every state, deciding to concentrate some of that campaign funding towards exposure of her candidacy and the Party to the national public.

Fulani also sought the endorsement of the Peace and Freedom Party of California, but despite winning a majority in that party's primary, she would lose the nomination to Ronald Daniels, the former Director the National Rainbow Coalition. Rather than pursuing a ballot space of her own, Fulani would endorse Daniels's candidacy in California.

Fulani and her running mate Maria Elizabeth Muñoz received 73,622 votes (0.1% of the popular vote).

Natural Law Party nomination

John Hagelin was on the ballot in twenty-eight states (264 Electoral Votes). Those states with a lighter shade are states in which he was an official write-in candidate.

The newly formed Natural Law Party nominated scientist and researcher John Hagelin for president and Mike Tompkins for vice president. The Natural Law Party had been founded in 1992 by Hagelin and 12 others who felt that governmental problems could be solved more effectively by following "Natural Laws". The party platform included preventive health care, sustainable agriculture and renewable energy technologies. During this and future campaigns, Hagelin favored abortion rights without public financing, campaign finance law reform, improved gun control, a flat tax, the eradication of PACs, a ban on soft money contributions, and school vouchers.

The party's first presidential ticket appeared on the ballot in 28 states and drew 37,137 votes (<0.1% of the popular vote).

U.S. Taxpayers' Party nomination

Howard Phillips was on the ballot in twenty-one states (215 Electoral Votes). Those states with a lighter shade are states in which he was an official write-in candidate.

U.S. Taxpayers' candidates:

The U.S. Taxpayers Party ran its first presidential ticket in 1992, having only been formed the prior year. Initially Howard Phillips had hoped to successfully entice a prominent conservative politician, such as the former Senator Gordon J. Humphrey from New Hampshire, or even Patrick Buchanan who at the time had only been mulling over running against President Bush (he would officially declare in December 1991).

No one, however, announced any intention to seek the Taxpayers Party nomination; Buchanan himself in the end endorsed President Bush at the Republican National Convention in Houston. Phillips had been unofficially nominated earlier in the year so as to allow the Party to be able to seek ballot access properly. While initially a temporary post, it was made permanent at the party's national convention, which was held in New Orleans on September 4 and 5. At the convention, which was attended by delegates from thirty-two states and Washington, D.C., Phillips received 264 votes on the first ballot, while Albion Knight was approved as his running mate by acclamation.[10]: 412 

Earlier that year, in the June 2 California primary, Phillips had received 15,456 votes in the American Independent Party primary. On August 30, the American Independent Party voted to affiliate with the U.S. Taxpayers Party, an affiliation which continued until 2008.[10]: 378 

Phillips and Knight drew 43,369 votes (<0.1% of the popular vote).

Populist Party nomination

Bo Gritz was on the ballot in eighteen states (161 Electoral Votes). Those states with a lighter shade are states in which he was an official write-in candidate.

Populist candidate:

Former United States Army Special Forces officer and Vietnam veteran Bo Gritz was the nominee of the Populist Party, facing virtually no opposition. Under the campaign slogan "God, Guns and Gritz" and publishing his political manifesto "The Bill of Gritz" (playing on his last name rhyming with "rights"), he called for staunch opposition to what he called "global government" and "The New World Order", ending all foreign aid, abolishing federal income tax, and abolishing the Federal Reserve System. During the campaign, Gritz openly proclaimed the United States to be a "Christian Nation", stating that the country's legal statutes "should reflect unashamed acceptance of Almighty God and His Laws". His run on the America First/Populist Party ticket was prompted by his association with another far-right political Christian talk radio host, Tom Valentine. During his campaign, part of Gritz's standard stump speech was an idea to pay off the national debt by minting a coin at the Treasury and sending it to the Federal Reserve. This predates the 2012 trillion-dollar coin concept.

During August 1992, Gritz attracted national attention as mediator during the government standoff with Randy Weaver at Ruby Ridge, Idaho.

He received 106,152 votes nationwide (0.1% of the popular vote). In two states he had a respectable showing for a minor third-party candidate: Utah, where he received 3.8% of the vote and Idaho, where he received 2.1% of the vote. In some counties, his support topped 10%, and in Franklin County, Idaho, was only a few votes away from pushing Bill Clinton into fourth place in the county.

Lyndon LaRouche's candidacy

Lyndon LaRouche was on the ballot in seventeen states (156 Electoral Votes). Those states with a lighter shade are states in which he was an official write-in candidate.

While officially running for the Democratic presidential nomination, Lyndon LaRouche also decided to run as an Independent in the general election, standing as the National Economic Recovery candidate.[11] LaRouche was in jail at the time, having been convicted of conspiracy to commit mail fraud in December 1988; it was only the second time in history that the presidency was sought from a prison cell (after Socialist Party candidate Eugene V. Debs, while imprisoned for his opposition to U.S. involvement in World War I, ran in 1920). His running-mate was James Bevel, a civil rights activist who had represented the LaRouche movement in its pursuit of the Franklin child prostitution ring allegations.

In addition to the displayed states, LaRouche had nearly made the ballot in the states of New York and Mississippi. In the case of New York, while his petition was valid and had enough signatures, none of his electors filed declarations of candidacy; in the cases of Mississippi a sore-loser law was in place, and because he ran in that state's Democratic presidential primary he was ineligible to run as an Independent in the general. Ohio also had a sore-loser law, but it was ruled in Brown vs. Taft that it did not apply to presidential candidates. LaRouche and Beval drew 22,863 votes. (<0.1% of the popular vote).

Socialist Workers' Party nomination

James Warren was on the ballot in thirteen states (148 Electoral Votes). Those states with a lighter shade are states in which he was an official write-in candidate.

Socialist Workers candidate:

James Warren, who was the 1988 presidential nominee of the Socialist Workers Party, received a second consecutive nomination from the Party on the first of November 1991. Warren had two running mates that varied from state to state; Estelle DeBates and Willie Mae Reid, the latter also a resident of Illinois.

Warren received 22,882 votes (<0.1% of the popular vote).

Ron Daniels candidacy

Ron Daniels was on the ballot in eight states (126 Electoral Votes). Those states with a lighter shade are states in which he was an official write-in candidate.

Ronald Daniels was the former executive director for the Center for Constitutional Rights, the former director of the National Rainbow Coalition, and the worked on both of Jesse Jackson's campaigns for the Democratic presidential nomination. Asiba Tupahache, a Native American activist from New York was his running-mate.

Though running an Independent campaign under the label "Campaign for a Better Tomorrow", Daniels was endorsed by a number of third parties across the states, most notably the Peace and Freedom Party of California; though he had lost that party's presidential primary to Lenora Fulani, the nominee of the New Alliance Party, the delegates at its convention voted in favor of his candidacy 110–91, the only time it has ever nominated someone other than the winner of the primary.

Daniels and Tupachache drew 27,396 votes (<0.1% of the popular vote).

Other nominations


The 1992 campaign also marked the entry of Ralph Nader into presidential politics as a candidate. Despite the advice of several liberal and environmental groups, Nader did not formally run. Rather, he tried to make an impact in the New Hampshire primaries, urging members of both parties to write-in his name.[12] As a result, several thousand Democrats and Republicans wrote-in Nader's name. Despite supporting mostly liberal legislation during his career as a consumer advocate, Nader received more votes from Republicans than Democrats.[citation needed]

The Worker's League nominated Helen Halyard for president; she was the party's nominee for vice president in 1984 and 1988. Fred Mazelis was nominated for vice president. Halyard and Mazelis drew 3,050 votes.

John Viamouyiannis Canidacy


Ballot Access: Michigan, New Jersey (33 Electoral)

John Yiamouyiannis, a major opponent of water fluoridation, ran as an Independent under the label "Take Back America". Allen C. McCone was his running-mate. Yiamouyiannis and McCone drew 2,199 votes.[citation needed]

Socialist Party Nomination


Ballot Access: Arkansas, Iowa, Louisiana, Tennessee (33 Electoral)

The Socialist Party nominated J. Quinn Brisben for president and Barbara Garson for vice president. Brisben and Garson drew 2,909 votes.

Grassroots Party Nomination


Ballot Access: DC, Tennessee, Utah, Wisconsin (30 Electoral)

The Grassroots Party nominated Jack Herer, a noted cannabis activist for president and Derrick Grimmer for vice president. Herer and Grimmer drew 3,875 votes.

Prohibition Party Nomination


Ballot Access: Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin (28 Electoral)

The Prohibition Party nominated Earl Dodge, the party's chairman for president and George Ormsby for vice president. Dodge and Ormsby drew 935 votes.

Drew Bradford Canidacy


Ballot Access: Arkansas, New Mexico, Tennessee (22 Electoral)

Drew Bradford was an Independent candidate for the Presidency; he did not have a running-mate. Bradford drew 4,749 votes.[citation needed]

Delbert Ehlers Canidacy


Ballot Access: Wisconsin (11 Electoral)

Delbert Ehlers was an Independent candidate for the Presidency. His running-mate was Rick Wendt. Ehlers and Wendt drew 1,149 votes.[citation needed]

General election




After Bill Clinton secured the Democratic Party's nomination in the spring of 1992, polls showed Ross Perot leading the race, followed by President Bush and Clinton in third place after a grueling nomination process. Two-way trial heats between Bush and Clinton in early 1992 showed Bush in the lead.[13][14][15][16] As the economy continued to sour and the President's approval rating continued to slide, the Democrats began to rally around their nominee. On July 9, 1992, Clinton chose Tennessee senator and former 1988 presidential candidate Al Gore to be his running mate.[17] As Governor Clinton's nomination acceptance speech approached, Ross Perot dropped out of the race, convinced that staying in the race with a "revitalized Democratic Party" would cause the race to be decided by the United States House of Representatives.[18] Clinton gave his acceptance speech on July 16, 1992, promising to bring a "new covenant" to America, and to work to heal the gap that had developed between the rich and the poor during the Reagan/Bush years.[19] The Clinton campaign received the biggest convention "bounce" in history[20] which brought him from 25 percent in the spring, behind Bush and Perot, to 55 percent versus Bush's 31 percent.

After the convention, Clinton and Gore began a bus tour around the United States, while the Bush/Quayle campaign began to criticize Clinton's character, highlighting accusations of infidelity and draft dodging. The Bush campaign emphasized its foreign policy successes such as Desert Storm, and the end of the Cold War. Bush also contrasted his military service to Clinton's lack thereof, and criticized Clinton's lack of foreign policy expertise. However, as the economy was the main issue, Bush's campaign floundered across the nation, even in strongly Republican areas,[21] and Clinton maintained leads with over 50 percent of the vote nationwide consistently, while Bush typically saw numbers in the upper 30s.[22] As Bush's economic edge had evaporated, his campaign looked to energize its socially conservative base at the 1992 Republican National Convention in Houston, Texas. At the convention, Bush's primary campaign opponent Pat Buchanan gave his famous "culture war" speech, criticizing Clinton's and Gore's social progressiveness, and voicing skepticism on his "New Democrat" brand. After President Bush accepted his renomination, his campaign saw a small bounce in the polls, but this was short-lived, as Clinton maintained his lead.[23] The campaign continued with a lopsided lead for Clinton through September,[24] until Ross Perot decided to re-enter the race.[25] Ross Perot's re-entry in the race was welcomed by the Bush campaign, as Fred Steeper, a poll taker for Bush, said, "He'll be important if we accomplish our goal, which is to draw even with Clinton." Initially, Perot's return saw the Texas billionaire's numbers stay low, until he was given the opportunity to participate in a trio of unprecedented three-man debates. The race narrowed, as Perot's numbers significantly improved as Clinton's numbers declined, while Bush's numbers remained more or less the same from earlier in the race[26] as Perot and Bush began to hammer at Clinton on character issues once again.

Presidential debates


The Commission on Presidential Debates organised four presidential debates[27]

Debates among candidates for the 1992 U.S. presidential election
No. Date Host Location Panelists Moderator Participants Viewership


P1 Sunday, October 11, 1992 Washington University in St. Louis St. Louis, Missouri Sander Vanocur
Ann Compton
John Mashek
Jim Lehrer President George H. W. Bush
Governor Bill Clinton
Mr. Ross Perot
VP Tuesday, October 13, 1992 Georgia Institute of Technology Atlanta, Georgia n/a Hal Bruno Vice President Dan Quayle
Senator Al Gore
Admiral James Stockdale
P2 Thursday, October 15, 1992 University of Richmond Richmond, Virginia n/a Carole Simpson President George H. W. Bush
Governor Bill Clinton
Mr. Ross Perot
P3 Monday, October 19, 1992 Michigan State University East Lansing, Michigan Gene Gibbons
Helen Thomas
Susan Rook
Jim Lehrer President George H. W. Bush
Governor Bill Clinton
Mr. Ross Perot

Character issues


Many character issues were raised during the campaign, including allegations that Clinton had dodged the draft during the Vietnam War, and had used marijuana, which Clinton claimed he had pretended to smoke, but "didn't inhale." Bush also accused Clinton of meeting with communists on a trip to Russia he took as a student. Clinton was often accused of being a philanderer by political opponents.

Allegations were also made that Bill Clinton had engaged in a long-term extramarital affair with Gennifer Flowers.[28] Clinton denied ever having an affair with Flowers.[29]

Election results by county
Results by congressional district.



On November 3, Bill Clinton won the election to serve as the 42nd president of the United States by a wide margin in the Electoral College, receiving 43% of the popular vote against Bush's 37.4% and Perot's 18.9%. It was the first time since 1968 that a candidate won the White House with under 50% of the popular vote. Only Washington, D.C., and Clinton's home state of Arkansas gave the majority of their votes to a single candidate in the entire country; the rest were won by pluralities of the vote. Clinton was the first Democrat since 1964 to win a majority of states.

Even though Clinton received roughly 3,100,815 more votes than Democratic nominee Michael Dukakis had four years earlier, the Democrats recorded a 2.7 percentage point decrease in their share of the popular vote compared to 1988 due to the higher turnout. His 43% share of the popular vote was the second-lowest for any winning candidate in the 20th century after Woodrow Wilson in 1912 (41.8%). President Bush's 37.4% was the lowest percentage total for a sitting president seeking re-election since William Howard Taft, also in 1912 (23.2%).[30] 1992 was, as the 1912 election was, a three-way race (that time between Taft, Wilson, and Theodore Roosevelt). It was also the lowest percentage for a major-party candidate since Alf Landon received 36.5% of the vote in 1936. Bush had a lower percentage of the popular vote than even Herbert Hoover, who was defeated in 1932 (39.7%). However, none of these races included a major third-party candidate.

Independent candidate Ross Perot received 19,743,821 with 18.9% of the popular vote. The billionaire used his own money to advertise extensively, and is the only non-major party candidate and the only non-party affiliated candidate ever allowed into the nationally televised presidential debates with both major party candidates (independent John Anderson debated Republican Ronald Reagan in 1980, but without Democrat Jimmy Carter, who had refused to appear in a three-man debate). Speaking about the North American Free Trade Agreement, Perot described its effect on American jobs as causing a "giant sucking sound". For a period of time, Perot was leading in the polls,[31] but he lost much of his support when he temporarily withdrew from the election, only to declare himself a candidate again soon after. This was also the most recent time that a non-major party candidate and a non-party affiliated candidate won at least one county.

Perot's 18.9% of the popular vote made him the most successful non-major party presidential candidate in terms of popular vote since Theodore Roosevelt in the 1912 election. His share of the popular vote was also the highest ever for a candidate who did not win any electoral votes. Although he did not win any states, Perot managed to finish ahead of one of the major party candidates in two states: In Maine, he received 30.44% of the vote to Bush's 30.39% (Clinton won Maine with 38.77%); in Utah, which Bush won with 43.36% of the popular vote, Perot collected 27.34% of the vote to Clinton's 24.65%. Perot also came in 2nd in Maine's 2nd Congressional District, where he had his best overall showing, winning 33.2% of the vote there and missing the district's 1 elector by only 4.6% of the vote.

The election was the most recent in which Montana voted for the Democratic candidate, the last time Florida backed the losing candidate and Georgia voted for the Democratic candidate also until 2020, and the last time that Colorado voted Democratic until 2008. This was also the first time since Texas' admission to the Union in 1845 that a Democrat won the White House without winning the state, and the second time a Democrat won the White House without North Carolina (the first was 1844), and the second time since Florida's admission (also in 1845) that a Democrat won without winning the state (John F. Kennedy in 1960 was the first).

Clinton was also the only Democrat at that point to win every electoral vote in the Northeast except for Lyndon Johnson in 1964. John Kerry and Barack Obama have been the only Democrats to repeat this since. Also, this was the first time since 1964 that the following nine states had voted Democratic: California, Colorado, Illinois, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, and Vermont.

The 168 electoral votes received by Bush, added to the 426 electoral votes he received in 1988, gave him the most total electoral votes received by any candidate who was elected to the office of president only once (594), and the ninth largest number of electoral votes received by any candidate who was elected to the office of president behind Grover Cleveland's 664, Barack Obama's 697, Woodrow Wilson's 712, Bill Clinton's 749, Dwight Eisenhower's 899, Ronald Reagan's 1,014, Richard Nixon's 1040 and Franklin D. Roosevelt's 1,876 total electoral votes.



Several factors made the results possible. First, the campaign came on the heels of an economic slowdown. Exit polling showed that 75% thought the economy was in fairly or very bad shape while 63% thought their personal finances were better or the same as four years ago.[32] The decision by Bush to accept a tax increase adversely affected his re-election bid. Pressured by rising budget deficits, Bush agreed to a budget compromise with Congress which raised taxes and reduced the federal budget deficit. Clinton was able to condemn the tax increase effectively on both its own merits and as a reflection of Bush's dishonesty. Effective Democratic TV ads were aired showing a clip of Bush's 1988 acceptance speech in which he promised "Read my lips … No new taxes." Most importantly, Bush's coalition was in disarray, for both the aforementioned reasons and for unrelated reasons. The end of the Cold War allowed old rivalries among conservatives to re-emerge and meant that other voters focused more on domestic policy, to the detriment of Bush, a social and fiscal moderate. The consequence of such a perception depressed conservative turnout.[33]

The election was compared to the 1945 United Kingdom general election, in which Winston Churchill, while a respected conservative wartime leader (like Bush) was not regarded as a good peacetime leader, and thus was voted out once the conflict was over.[34]

Unlike Bush, Clinton was able to unite his fractious and ideologically diverse party behind his candidacy, even when its different wings conflicted. To garner the support of moderates and conservative Democrats, he attacked Sister Souljah, an obscure rap musician whose lyrics Clinton condemned. Furthermore, Clinton made clear his support of the death penalty and would later champion making school uniforms in public schools a requirement.[35] Clinton could also point to his centrist record as governor of Arkansas. More liberal Democrats were impressed by Clinton's record on abortion and affirmative action. His strong connections to African Americans also played a key role. In addition, he organized significant numbers of young voters and became a symbol of the rise of the baby boomer generation to political power.[36] Supporters remained energized and confident, even in times of scandal or missteps.

The effect of Ross Perot's candidacy has been a contentious point of debate for many years. In the ensuing months after the election, various Republicans asserted that Perot had acted as a spoiler, enough to the detriment of Bush to lose him the election. While many disaffected conservatives may have voted for Ross Perot to protest Bush's tax increase, further examination of the Perot vote in the Election Night exit polls not only showed that Perot siphoned votes nearly equally among Bush and Clinton,[37][38][39][40] but roughly two-thirds of those voters who cited Bush's broken "No New Taxes" pledge as "very important" (25%) voted for Bill Clinton.[41] The voting numbers reveal that to win the electoral vote Bush would have had to win 10 of the 11 states Clinton won by less than five percentage points. For Bush to earn a majority of the popular vote, he would have needed 12.2% of Perot's 18.9% of the vote, 65% of Perot's support base.[42] State exit polls suggested that Perot did not alter the electoral college count, except potentially in one state (Ohio), which nonetheless showed a result in the margin of error.[43] Furthermore, Perot was most popular in states that strongly favored either Clinton or Bush, limiting his real electoral impact for either candidate.[44]

Perot gained relatively little support in the Southern states and happened to have the best showing in states with few electoral votes. Perot appealed to disaffected voters all across the political spectrum who had grown weary of the two-party system. NAFTA played a role in Perot's support, and Perot voters were relatively moderate on hot-button social issues.[45][46] A 1999 study in the American Journal of Political Science estimated that Perot's candidacy hurt the Clinton campaign, reducing "Clinton's margin of victory over Bush by seven percentage point."[47] In 2016, FiveThirtyEight noted that it was "unlikely" that Perot was a spoiler.[48]

Clinton, Bush, and Perot did not focus on abortion during the campaign. Exit polls, however, showed that attitudes toward abortion "significantly influenced" the vote, as pro-choice Republicans defected from Bush.[49][50]



According to Seymour Martin Lipset, this election had several unique characteristics. Voters felt that economic conditions were worse than they actually were, which harmed Bush. A rare event was a strong third-party candidate. Liberals launched a backlash against 12 years of a conservative White House. The chief factor was Clinton's uniting his party, and winning over a number of heterogeneous groups.[51]

Clinton's election ended an era in which the Republican Party had controlled the White House for 12 consecutive years, and for 20 of the previous 24 years. The election also brought the Democrats full control of the legislative and executive branches of the federal government, including both houses of U.S. Congress and the presidency, for the first time since the administration of the last Democratic president, Jimmy Carter. This would not last for very long, however, as the Republicans won control of both the House and Senate in 1994. Reelected in 1996, Clinton would become the first Democratic president since Franklin D. Roosevelt to serve two full terms in the White House and the first to leave office at the end of his second full term since Woodrow Wilson.

1992 was arguably a political realignment election. It made the Democratic Party dominant in presidential elections in the Northeast, the Great Lakes region, and the West Coast, where many states had previously either been swing states or Republican-leaning. Clinton picked up several states that went Republican in 1988, and which have remained in the Democratic column ever since: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, most of Maine (besides the state's second congressional district, which broke the state's total straight Democratic voting record since, when it voted for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump in 2016), Maryland, New Jersey, and Vermont. Vermont, carried by Clinton, had been heavily Republican for generations prior to the election, voting for a Democrat only once (in 1964).[52] The state has been won by the Democratic nominee in every presidential election since. Bill Clinton narrowly defeated Bush in New Jersey (by two points), which had voted for the Republican nominee all but twice since 1948. Clinton would later win the state in 1996 by eighteen points; like Vermont, Republicans have not won the state since.[53] California, which had been a Republican stronghold since 1952, was now trending Democratic. Clinton, a native Southerner, was able to carry several states in the South that the GOP had won for much of the past two decades, but ultimately won only four of eleven former Confederate states. This reflected the final shift of the South to the Republican Party. In subsequent presidential elections from 1996 to 2020, 28 out of the 50 states were carried by the same party as in 1992 (15 for the Democrats and 13 for the Republicans).

Detailed results

Electoral results
Presidential candidate Party Home state Popular vote Electoral
Running mate
Count Percentage Vice-presidential candidate Home state Electoral vote
Bill Clinton Democratic Arkansas 44,909,889 43.01% 370 Al Gore Tennessee 370
George H. W. Bush (incumbent) Republican Texas 39,104,550 37.45% 168 Dan Quayle (incumbent) Indiana 168
Ross Perot Independent Texas 19,743,821 18.91% 0 James Stockdale California 0
Andre Marrou Libertarian Alaska 290,087 0.28% 0 Nancy Lord Nevada 0
Bo Gritz Populist Nevada 106,152 0.10% 0 Cyril Minett New Mexico 0
Lenora Fulani New Alliance Party New York 73,622 0.07% 0 Maria Elizabeth Muñoz California 0
Howard Phillips U.S. Taxpayers Party Virginia 43,369 0.04% 0 Albion W. Knight Jr. Florida 0
Other 152,516 0.13% Other
Total 104,423,923 100% 538 538
Needed to win 270 270

Source (Popular Vote): Leip, David. "1992 Presidential Election Results". Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections. Retrieved August 7, 2005.

Source (Electoral Vote): "Electoral College Box Scores 1789–1996". National Archives and Records Administration. Retrieved August 7, 2005.

Popular vote
Electoral vote

Results by state



States/districts won by Clinton/Gore
States/districts won by Bush/Quayle
At-large results (For states that split electoral votes)
Candidates with electoral votes (E) Candidates with no electoral votes Overall popular vote
Bill Clinton
George H.W. Bush
Ross Perot
Andre Marrou
Others Top-2 margin
(+/− if won by D/R)
State Total
State E Vote % E Vote % E Vote % Vote % Vote % Vote % Vote
Alabama 9 690,080 40.88 804,283 47.65 9 183,109 10.85 5,737 0.34 4,851 0.29 −114,203 −6.77 1,688,060 AL
Alaska 3 78,294 30.29 102,000 39.46 3 73,481 28.43 1,378 0.53 3,353 1.29 −23,706 −9.17 258,506 AK
Arizona 8 543,050 36.52 572,086 38.47 8 353,741 23.79 6,759 0.45 11,339 0.76 −29,036 −1.95 1,486,975 AZ
Arkansas 6 505,823 53.21 6 337,324 35.48 99,132 10.43 1,261 0.13 7,113 0.75 168,499 17.73 950,653 AR
California 54 5,121,325 46.01 54 3,630,574 32.61 2,296,006 20.63 48,139 0.43 35,677 0.32 1,490,751 13.40 11,131,721 CA
Colorado 8 629,681 40.13 8 562,850 35.87 366,010 23.32 8,669 0.55 1,970 0.13 66,831 4.26 1,569,180 CO
Connecticut 8 682,318 42.21 8 578,313 35.78 348,771 21.58 5,391 0.33 1,539 0.10 104,005 6.43 1,616,332 CT
Delaware 3 126,055 43.51 3 102,313 35.31 59,213 20.44 935 0.32 1,219 0.42 23,742 8.19 289,735 DE
D.C. 3 192,619 84.64 3 20,698 9.10 9,681 4.25 467 0.21 4,107 1.80 171,921 75.54 227,572 DC
Florida 25 2,072,798 39.00 2,173,310 40.89 25 1,053,067 19.82 15,079 0.28 238 0.00 −100,512 −1.89 5,314,392 FL
Georgia 13 1,008,966 43.47 13 995,252 42.88 309,657 13.34 7,110 0.31 140 0.01 13,714 0.59 2,321,125 GA
Hawaii 4 179,310 48.09 4 136,822 36.70 53,003 14.22 1,119 0.30 2,588 0.69 42,488 11.39 372,842 HI
Idaho 4 137,013 28.42 202,645 42.03 4 130,395 27.04 1,167 0.24 10,922 2.27 −65,632 −13.61 482,142 ID
Illinois 22 2,453,350 48.58 22 1,734,096 34.34 840,515 16.64 9,218 0.18 12,978 0.26 719,254 14.24 5,050,157 IL
Indiana 12 848,420 36.79 989,375 42.91 12 455,934 19.77 7,936 0.34 4,206 0.18 −140,955 −6.12 2,305,871 IN
Iowa 7 586,353 43.29 7 504,891 37.27 253,468 18.71 1,076 0.08 8,819 0.65 81,462 6.02 1,354,607 IA
Kansas 6 390,434 33.74 449,951 38.88 6 312,358 26.99 4,314 0.37 179 0.02 −59,517 −5.14 1,157,236 KS
Kentucky 8 665,104 44.55 8 617,178 41.34 203,944 13.66 4,513 0.30 2,161 0.14 47,926 3.21 1,492,900 KY
Louisiana 9 815,971 45.58 9 733,386 40.97 211,478 11.81 3,155 0.18 26,027 1.45 82,585 4.61 1,790,017 LA
Maine † 2 263,420 38.77 2 206,504 30.39 206,820 30.44 1,681 0.25 1,074 0.16 56,600 8.33 679,499 ME
Maine-1 1 145,191 39.9 1 115,697 31.8 102,828 28.3 29,494 8.11 363,716 ME1
Maine-2 1 118,229 37.8 1 90,807 29.0 103,992 33.2 14,237 4.55 313,028 ME2
Maryland 10 988,571 49.80 10 707,094 35.62 281,414 14.18 4,715 0.24 3,252 0.16 281,477 14.18 1,985,046 MD
Massachusetts 12 1,318,639 47.54 12 805,039 29.02 630,731 22.74 9,021 0.32 10,234 0.37 513,600 18.52 2,773,664 MA
Michigan 18 1,871,182 43.77 18 1,554,940 36.38 824,813 19.30 10,175 0.24 13,563 0.32 316,242 7.39 4,274,673 MI
Minnesota 10 1,020,997 43.48 10 747,841 31.85 562,506 23.96 3,373 0.14 13,230 0.56 273,156 11.63 2,347,947 MN
Mississippi 7 400,258 40.77 487,793 49.68 7 85,626 8.72 2,154 0.22 5,962 0.61 −87,535 −8.91 981,793 MS
Missouri 11 1,053,873 44.07 11 811,159 33.92 518,741 21.69 7,497 0.31 295 0.01 242,714 10.15 2,391,565 MO
Montana 3 154,507 37.63 3 144,207 35.12 107,225 26.11 986 0.24 3,686 0.90 10,300 2.51 410,611 MT
Nebraska † 2 217,344 29.40 344,346 46.58 2 174,687 23.63 1,344 0.18 1,562 0.21 −127,002 −17.18 739,283 NE
Nebraska-1 1 80,696 32.6 107,081 43.2 1 59,974 24.2 -28,847 -10.6 247,751 NE1
Nebraska-2 1 78,701 32.4 115,255 47.5 1 48,657 20.1 -32,226 -15.1 242,613 NE2
Nebraska-3 1 57,467 23.5 121,342 49.7 1 65,473 26.8 -55,869 -26.1 244,282 NE3
Nevada 4 189,148 37.36 4 175,828 34.73 132,580 26.19 1,835 0.36 6,927 1.37 13,320 2.63 506,318 NV
New Hampshire 4 209,040 38.86 4 202,484 37.64 121,337 22.56 3,548 0.66 1,536 0.29 6,556 1.22 537,945 NH
New Jersey 15 1,436,206 42.95 15 1,356,865 40.58 521,829 15.61 6,822 0.20 21,872 0.65 79,341 2.37 3,343,594 NJ
New Mexico 5 261,617 45.90 5 212,824 37.34 91,895 16.12 1,615 0.28 2,035 0.36 48,793 8.56 569,986 NM
New York 33 3,444,450 49.72 33 2,346,649 33.88 1,090,721 15.75 13,451 0.19 31,662 0.46 1,097,801 15.85 6,926,933 NY
North Carolina 14 1,114,042 42.65 1,134,661 43.44 14 357,864 13.70 5,171 0.20 112 0.00 −20,619 −0.79 2,611,850 NC
North Dakota 3 99,168 32.18 136,244 44.22 3 71,084 23.07 416 0.14 1,221 0.40 −37,076 −12.04 308,133 ND
Ohio 21 1,984,942 40.18 21 1,894,310 38.35 1,036,426 20.98 7,252 0.15 17,034 0.34 90,632 1.83 4,939,964 OH
Oklahoma 8 473,066 34.02 592,929 42.65 8 319,878 23.01 4,486 0.32 −119,863 −8.63 1,390,359 OK
Oregon 7 621,314 42.48 7 475,757 32.53 354,091 24.21 4,277 0.29 7,204 0.49 145,557 9.95 1,462,643 OR
Pennsylvania 23 2,239,164 45.15 23 1,791,841 36.13 902,667 18.20 21,477 0.43 4,661 0.09 447,323 9.02 4,959,810 PA
Rhode Island 4 213,302 47.04 4 131,601 29.02 105,045 23.16 571 0.13 2,959 0.65 81,701 18.02 453,478 RI
South Carolina 8 479,514 39.88 577,507 48.02 8 138,872 11.55 2,719 0.23 3,915 0.33 −97,993 −8.14 1,202,527 SC
South Dakota 3 124,888 37.14 136,718 40.66 3 73,295 21.80 814 0.24 539 0.16 −11,830 −3.52 336,254 SD
Tennessee 11 933,521 47.08 11 841,300 42.43 199,968 10.09 1,847 0.09 6,002 0.30 92,221 4.65 1,982,638 TN
Texas 32 2,281,815 37.08 2,496,071 40.56 32 1,354,781 22.01 19,699 0.32 1,652 0.03 −214,256 −3.48 6,154,018 TX
Utah 5 183,429 24.65 322,632 43.36 5 203,400 27.34 1,900 0.26 32,638 4.39 −119,232 −16.03 743,999 UT
Vermont 3 133,592 46.11 3 88,122 30.42 65,991 22.78 501 0.17 1,495 0.52 45,470 15.70 289,701 VT
Virginia 13 1,038,650 40.59 1,150,517 44.97 13 348,639 13.63 5,730 0.22 15,129 0.59 −111,867 −4.38 2,558,665 VA
Washington 11 993,039 43.40 11 731,235 31.96 541,780 23.68 7,533 0.33 14,641 0.64 261,804 11.44 2,288,228 WA
West Virginia 5 331,001 48.41 5 241,974 35.39 108,829 15.91 1,873 0.27 89,027 13.02 683,677 WV
Wisconsin 11 1,041,066 41.13 11 930,855 36.78 544,479 21.51 2,877 0.11 11,837 0.47 110,211 4.35 2,531,114 WI
Wyoming 3 68,160 33.98 79,347 39.56 3 51,263 25.56 844 0.42 973 0.49 −11,187 −5.58 200,587 WY
TOTALS: 538 44,909,889 43.01 370 39,104,545 37.45 168 19,742,267 18.91 291,628 0.28 378,330 0.36 5,805,344 5.56 104,426,659 US

Maine and Nebraska each allowed their electoral votes to be split between candidates using the Congressional District Method for electoral vote assignment. In both states, two electoral votes were awarded to the winner of the statewide race and one electoral vote was awarded to the winner of each congressional district.[55] District results for Maine and Nebraska do not include results for Marrou or other candidates and so totals differ from those for the states' at-large. Because Perot finished in 2nd place in some districts, the margins of the districts do not match the margin at-large. Nebraska split its electoral votes this way for the first time.

States that flipped from Republican to Democratic


Close states


States with margin of victory less than 1% (27 electoral votes):

  1. Georgia – 0.59% (13,714 votes)
  2. North Carolina – 0.79% (20,619 votes)

States/Districts with margin of victory less than 5% (175 electoral votes):

  1. New Hampshire – 1.22% (6,556 votes)
  2. Ohio – 1.83% (90,632 votes)
  3. Florida – 1.89% (100,612 votes)
  4. Arizona – 1.95% (29,036 votes)
  5. New Jersey – 2.37% (79,341 votes)
  6. Montana – 2.51% (10,300 votes)
  7. Nevada – 2.63% (13,320 votes)
  8. Kentucky – 3.21% (47,926 votes)
  9. Texas – 3.48% (214,256 votes)
  10. South Dakota – 3.52% (11,830 votes)
  11. Colorado – 4.26% (66,831 votes)
  12. Wisconsin – 4.35% (110,211 votes)
  13. Virginia – 4.37% (111,867 votes)
  14. Maine's 2nd Congressional District – 4.54% (14,237 votes) (margin over Ross Perot)
  15. Louisiana – 4.61% (82,585 votes)
  16. Tennessee – 4.65% (92,221 votes) (tipping point state)

States with margin of victory between 5% and 10% (131 electoral votes):

  1. Kansas – 5.14% (59,517 votes)
  2. Wyoming – 5.60% (11,187 votes)
  3. Iowa – 6.02% (81,462 votes)
  4. Indiana – 6.12% (140,955 votes)
  5. Connecticut – 6.43% (104,005 votes)
  6. Alabama – 6.77% (114,203 votes)
  7. Michigan – 7.39% (316,242 votes)
  8. South Carolina – 8.14% (97,993 votes)
  9. Maine's 1st Congressional District – 8.11% (29,494 votes)
  10. Delaware – 8.19% (23,741 votes)
  11. Maine – 8.33% (56,600 votes) (margin over Ross Perot)
  12. New Mexico – 8.56% (48,793 votes)
  13. Oklahoma – 8.63% (119,863 votes)
  14. Mississippi – 8.91% (87,535 votes)
  15. Pennsylvania – 9.02% (447,323 votes)
  16. Alaska – 9.17% (23,706 votes)
  17. Oregon – 9.95% (145,557 votes)

Source: New York Times President Map




Counties with Highest Percent of Vote (Democratic)

  1. Washington, D.C. 84.64%
  2. Starr County, Texas 82.80%
  3. Macon County, Alabama 82.78%
  4. Duval County, Texas 79.56%
  5. Jefferson County, Mississippi 79.39%

Counties with Highest Percent of Vote (Republican)

  1. Jackson County, Kentucky 74.96%
  2. Sioux County, Iowa 72.21%
  3. Hansford County, Texas 69.08%
  4. Ochiltree County, Texas 68.06%
  5. Shelby County, Alabama 67.97%

Counties with Highest Percent of Vote (Other)

  1. Loving County, Texas 46.88%
  2. San Juan County, Colorado 40.40%
  3. Billings County, North Dakota 39.82%
  4. Somerset County, Maine 38.95%
  5. Esmeralda County, Nevada 37.67%

Voter demographics

Presidential vote in social groups (in percentage)
Social group Clinton Bush Perot % of
total vote
Total vote 43 37 19 100
Party and ideology
Conservative Republicans 5 82 13 21
Moderate Republicans 16 63 21 13
Liberal Republicans 16 54 30 2
Conservative Independents 17 53 30 7
Moderate Independents 42 28 30 15
Liberal Independents 54 16 29 4
Conservative Democrats 61 23 16 6
Moderate Democrats 76 9 15 20
Liberal Democrats 85 11 5 13
Gender and marital status
Married men 37 42 21 33
Married women 41 40 19 33
Unmarried men 48 29 22 15
Unmarried women 53 31 15 19
White 39 40 20 84
Black 83 10 7 10
Hispanic 61 25 14 4
Asian 30 55 15 1
White Protestant 32 47 21 46
Catholic 44 35 20 29
Jewish 80 11 9 3
Born Again, religious right 23 61 15 17
18–29 years old 43 34 22 17
30–44 years old 41 38 21 33
45–59 years old 41 40 19 26
60 and older 50 38 12 24
Not a high school graduate 54 28 18 6
High school graduate 43 36 21 24
Some college education 41 37 21 27
College graduate 39 41 20 26
Post graduate education 50 36 14 17
Family income
Under $15,000 58 23 19 13
$15,000–29,999 45 35 20 27
$30,000–49,999 41 38 21 26
$50,000-$75,000 41 42 17 19
Over $75,000 36 48 16 15
East 47 35 18 23
Midwest 42 37 21 26
South 41 43 16 30
West 43 34 23 20
Community size
Population over 500,000 58 28 13 10
Population 50,000 to 500,000 50 33 16 21
Suburbs 40 39 21 39
Rural areas, towns 39 40 20 30

Source: Voter News Service exit poll, reported in The New York Times, November 10, 1996, 28.

See also



  1. ^ "National General Election VEP Turnout Rates, 1789-Present". United States Election Project. CQ Press.
  2. ^ Clines, F (March 14, 1998). "Testing of a President: the Accuser; Jones Lawyers Issue Files Alleging Clinton Pattern of Harassment of Women". The New York Times. Retrieved March 20, 2008. the President, though finally confirming a sexual encounter with Ms. Flowers
  3. ^ Purnick, Joyce; Oreskes, Michael (November 29, 1987). "Jesse Jackson Aims for the Mainstream". The New York Times. Retrieved October 1, 2012.
  4. ^ Ifill, Gwen (July 10, 1992), "Clinton Selects Senator Gore Of Tennessee As Running Mate", The New York Times
  5. ^ Al Gore, United States Senate
  6. ^ "CHAPTER 13: Toward the 21st Century". usinfo.state.gov. Archived from the original on November 3, 2004. Retrieved June 2, 2022.
  7. ^ Kalb, Deborah, ed. (2010). Guide to U.S. Elections. Washington, DC: CQ Press. p. 451. ISBN 978-1-60426-536-1.
  8. ^ a b "The 1992 Campaign: On the Trail; Poll Gives Perot a Clear Lead", The New York Times, June 11, 1992
  9. ^ Berke, Richard L. (October 26, 1992), "The 1992 Campaign: The Overview; Perot Says He Quit In July To Thwart G.O.P. 'Dirty Tricks'", The New York Times
  10. ^ a b Havel, James T. (1996). U.S. Presidential Elections and the Candidates: A Biographical and Historical Guide. Vol. 2: The Elections, 1789–1992. New York: Simon & Schuster. ISBN 0-02-864623-1.
  11. ^ LoudounNow (February 18, 2019). "Perennial Presidential Candidate LaRouche Dies at 96". Loudoun Now. Retrieved February 8, 2021.
  12. ^ Kolbert, Elizabeth (February 18, 1992), "In Nader's Campaign, White House Isn't the Goal", The New York Times
  13. ^ Toner, Robin (March 3, 1992), "Voters Are Unhappy With All the Choices", The New York Times
  14. ^ Toner, Robin (April 1, 1992), "Clinton Dogged By Voter Doubt, Poll of U.S. Says", The New York Times
  15. ^ Toner, Robin (April 26, 1992), "Poll Shows Perot Gaining Strength To Rival Clinton's", The New York Times
  16. ^ Toner, Robin (June 23, 1992), "Bush and Clinton Sag in Survey; Perot's Negative Rating Doubles", The New York Times
  17. ^ "Their Own Words; Excerpts From Clinton's and Gore's Remarks on the Ticket", The New York Times, July 10, 1992
  18. ^ "Captain Perot Jumps Ship", The New York Times, July 17, 1992
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  24. ^ "Clinton Takes 21-Point Lead Over President in a New Poll", The New York Times, September 22, 1992
  25. ^ Toner, Robin (September 30, 1992), "Campaign Strategy; 2 Camps Regard A Perot Revival With Less Fear", The New York Times
  26. ^ Toner, Robin (October 25, 1992), "Contest Tightens As Perot Resurges And Clinton Slips", The New York Times
  27. ^ a b c d e "CPD: 1992 Debates". www.debates.org. Retrieved January 8, 2019.
  28. ^ Conason, Joe (July/August 1992). "Reason No. 1 Not To Vote For Bill Clinton: He Cheats on His Wife." Spy magazine.
  29. ^ Kurtz, Howard (August 12, 1992). "Clinton Angrily Denounces Report of Extramarital Affair as 'a Lie.'" The Washington Post.
  30. ^ Kornacki, Steve (January 21, 2011). "Why the 'good' Iraq war wasn't so good" Archived January 26, 2011, at the Wayback Machine. Salon.
  31. ^ Dionne, E.J. (June 9, 1992). "PEROT LEADS IN NEW POLL". Washington Post. Retrieved February 8, 2021.
  32. ^ Topics at a Glance—iPOLL summary results, archived from the original on September 18, 2008, retrieved August 27, 2008
  33. ^ Toner, Robin (November 11, 1992), "The Republicans; Looking to the Future, Party Sifts Through Past", The New York Times
  34. ^ Fineman, Howard (September 15, 1991). "Bush: The Churchill Scenario". Newsweek. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  35. ^ Mitchell, Alison (January 27, 1996). "CLINTON'S ADVISERS; Sharp Split Over Issues: Economics Or Values?". The New York Times.
  36. ^ Shapiro, Walter (November 16, 1992). "Baby-boomer Bill Clinton: A Generation Takes Power". Time.
  37. ^ "THE 1992 ELECTIONS: DISAPPOINTMENT -- NEWS ANALYSIS An Eccentric but No Joke; Perot's Strong Showing Raises Questions On What Might Have Been, and Might Be". The New York Times. November 5, 1992.
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  41. ^ Schmalz, Jeffrey (November 4, 1992), "Clinton Carves a Path Deep Into Reagan Country", The New York Times
  42. ^ 1992 Presidential Election – What if Scenario
  43. ^ E.J. Dionne Jr. (November 8, 1992). "Perot Seen Not Affecting Vote Outcome". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 18, 2016.
  44. ^ AARON W. BROWN (February 23, 2013). "H. Ross Perot and George C. Wallace: Defining the Archetype of Third-party "Success" in Presidential Elections" (PDF). Digitalcommons.northgeorgia.edu. Retrieved August 18, 2016.
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  46. ^ Mishel, Lawrence; Teixeira, Ruy A. (December 30, 1998), The Political Arithmetic of the NAFTA Vote (PDF), archived from the original (PDF) on November 28, 2008
  47. ^ Lacy, Dean; Burden, Barry C. (1999). "The Vote-Stealing and Turnout Effects of Ross Perot in the 1992 U.S. Presidential Election". American Journal of Political Science. 43 (1): 233. doi:10.2307/2991792. ISSN 0092-5853. JSTOR 2991792.
  48. ^ Druke, Galen (October 24, 2016). "Long Before Trump, There Was Ross Perot". FiveThirtyEight. Retrieved May 9, 2021.
  49. ^ Critchlow, Donald T. (2004), Intended Consequences: Birth Control, Abortion, and the Federal Government in Modern America, New York: Oxford University Press, p. 221, ISBN 978-0-19-504657-1
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  51. ^ Seymour Martin Lipset, "The significance of the 1992 election." PS: Political Science and Politics 26.1 (1993): 7-16 online
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Further reading

  • Abramowitz, Alan I. (1995), "It's Abortion, Stupid: Policy Voting in the 1992 Presidential Election", Journal of Politics, 57 (1): 176–186, doi:10.2307/2960276, ISSN 0022-3816, JSTOR 2960276, S2CID 155087138
  • Alexander, Herbert E.; Corrado, Anthony (1995), Financing the 1992 Election, Armonk: Sharpe, ISBN 978-1-56324-437-7
  • Buell Jr, Emmett H. "The 1992 Elections." Journal of Politics (1994): 1133–1144; reviews leading political science studies of the election
  • Ceaser, James, and Andrew Busch. Upside Down and Inside Out: The 1992 Elections and American Politics (1993).
  • Crotty, William, ed. America's Choice: The Election of 1992 (1993)
  • DeFrank, Thomas M.; et al. (1994), Quest for the Presidency, 1992, College Station: Texas A&M University Press, ISBN 978-0-89096-644-0
  • De la Garza, Rodolfo O.; Desipio, Louis (1996), Ethnic Ironies: Latino Politics in the 1992 Elections, Boulder: Westview, ISBN 978-0-8133-8910-3
  • Doherty, Kathryn M., and James G. Gimpel. "Candidate Character vs. the Economy in the 1992 Election." Political Behavior 19.3 (1997): 177–196. online
  • Germond, Jack, and Jules Witcover. Mad As Hell: Revolt at the Ballot Box, 1992 (1993). online
  • Goldman, Peter. et al. Quest for the Presidency 1992 (1994) 805pp.
  • Herron, Michael C., et al. "Measurement of political effects in the United States economy: A study of the 1992 presidential election." Economics & Politics 11.1 (1999): 51–81.
  • Lacy, Dean; Burden, Barry C. (1999), "The Vote-Stealing and Turnout Effects of Ross Perot in the 1992 U.S. Presidential Election", American Journal of Political Science, 43 (1): 233–255, doi:10.2307/2991792, JSTOR 2991792
  • Johnstone, Andrew, and Andrew Priest, eds. US Presidential Elections and Foreign Policy: Candidates, Campaigns, and Global Politics from FDR to Bill Clinton (2017) pp 317–225. online
  • Jones, Bryan D. (1995), The New American Politics: Reflections on Political Change and the Clinton Administration, Boulder: Westview, ISBN 978-0-8133-1972-8
  • Kellstedt, Lyman A., et al. "Religious voting blocs in the 1992 election: The year of the evangelical?." Sociology of Religion 55.3 (1994): 307–326. [Kellstedt, Lyman A., et al. "Religious voting blocs in the 1992 election: The year of the evangelical?." Sociology of Religion 55.3 (1994): 307–326. online]
  • Klein, Jill Gabrielle. "Negativity in impressions of presidential candidates revisited: The 1992 election." Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 22.3 (1996): 288–295.
  • Ladd, Everett Carll. "The 1992 vote for President Clinton: Another brittle mandate?." Political Science Quarterly 108.1 (1993): 1-28. online
  • Lipset, Seymour Martin. "The significance of the 1992 election." PS: Political Science and Politics 26.1 (1993): 7–16. online
  • Nelson, Michael ed. The Elections of 1992 (1993)
  • Nelson, Michael. Clinton's Elections: 1992, 1996, and the Birth of a New Era of Governance (2020) excerpt
  • O'Mara, Margaret. Pivotal Tuesdays: Four Elections That Shaped the Twentieth Century (2015), compares 1912, 1932, 1968, 1992 in terms of social, economic, and political history
  • Ornstein, Norman J. "Foreign policy and the 1992 election." Foreign Affairs 71.3 (1992): 1–16. online
  • Pomper, Gerald M. ed. The Election of 1992 (1993).
  • Post, Jerrold M. "The Political psychology of the Ross Perot phenomenon." in The Clinton Presidency (Routledge, 2019. 37–56).
  • Rosenstiel, Tom. (1993), Strange Bedfellows: How Television and the Presidential Candidates Changed American Politics, 1992, New York: Hyperion, ISBN 978-1-56282-859-2
  • Steed, Robert P. (1994), The 1992 Presidential Election in the South: Current Patterns of Southern Party and Electoral Politics, Westport: Praeger, ISBN 978-0-275-94534-3
  • Troy, Gil. "Stumping in the bookstores: A literary history of the 1992 presidential campaign." Presidential Studies Quarterly (1995): 697–710. online
  • Weaver, David, and Dan Drew. "Voter learning in the 1992 presidential election: Did the “nontraditional” media and debates matter?." Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly 72.1 (1995): 7–17.

Political commentary and campaign statements

  • Barlett, Donald L. and James B. Steele. America: What Went Wrong? (1992) online.
  • Clinton, Bill, and Al Gore. Putting People First: How We Can All Change America (1992)
  • Cramer, Richard Ben. What It Takes: The Way to the White House (1992). online.
  • Dionne, E. J. Why Americans Hate Politics (1992). online
  • Duffy, Michael, and Dan Goodgame. Marching in Place: The Status Quo Presidency of George Bush (1992) online.
  • Edsall Thomas Byrne, and Mary D. Edsall. Chain Reaction: The Impact of Race, Rights, and Taxes on American Politics (1992) online.
  • Ehrenhalt, Alan. The United States of Ambition: Politicians, Power, and the Pursuit of Office (1992) online.
  • Gore, Al. Earth in the Balance: Ecology and the Human Spirit (1992). online
  • Greider, William. Who Will Tell the People: The Betrayal of American Democracy (1992) online.
  • Jamieson, Kathleen Hall. Dirty Politics: Deception, Distraction, and Democracy (1992) online.
  • Perot, Ross. United We Stand: How We Can Take Back Our Country (1992) online.
  • Phillips, Kevin. The Politics of Rich and Poor: Wealth and the American Electorate in the Reagan Aftermath (1992) online.
  • Sabato, Larry J. Feeding Frenzy: How Attack Journalism Has Transformed American Politics (1991) online
  • Will, George F. Restoration: Congress, Term Limits and the Recovery of Deliberative Democracy (1992) online.