Once in a while I’ll read that one factor in choosing a VP nominee is that s/he may help to carry a key state in the general election. For instance:
But has this ever happened? Has there ever been an election in which the VP nominee’s home state made the difference in the election and the margin of victory was close enough to claim that the VP choice made the difference in that state?
BTW, please don’t get this thread thrown into GD before the OP question is answered. This has nothing to do with anyone likely to be nominated for POTUS or VP in 2008.
You can argue that the choice of Lyndon Johnson by Kennedy helped ensure a victory in Texas and that was crucial in a close election. Technically, though, Kennedy would have won even if he had lost Texas. It helped him afterward that the electoral vote was not so close that one state would have made the difference, especially since people still have the false notion that he won only because Richard Daley stole enough votes to win him Illinois. Kennedy needed to steal enough votes in *both * states to win.
Arguably the 2000 election. The Republicans won Wyoming which was Cheney’s home state. If it had gone Democrat, the electoral count would have been 269-268 in favor of the Democrats.
That’s a pretty big argument. Wyoming hasn’t gone for the Democrats since 1964.
Yes, three times–all in the Nineteenth Century, and all (unsurprisingly) involving New York. New York was the largest state in the country in the late Nineteenth Century, and a key swing state, so it served as a breeding ground (along with Indiana) for Vice Presidential candidates.
In 1848, Millard Fillmore helped Zachary Taylor carry New York, and the 36 EV’s made the difference in a 163-127 election.
In 1880, Chester Arthur helped James Garfield carry New York, and the 35 EV’s made the difference in a 214-155 election.
In 1888, Levi Morton helped Benjamin Harrison carry New York, and the 36 EV’s made the difference in a 233-168 election.
Since 1900 there have been but few elections close enough to be decided by a single state. And in two of those that were (2000 and 2004), the winning party eschewed the strategy of choosing a VP candidate from a large swing state,
And Cheney wasn’t even really from Wyoming. He changed his residence from Texas to Wyoming so that Texas electors could vote for both of them.
He was originally from Wyoming and served as its Congressmen though. It’s not like he just picked it as a random state when the issue of his and Bush’s shared Texas residency came up during the 2000 election.
That’s why I said “arguably”. But the 2000 election did fulfill the OP’s description: “Has there ever been an election in which the VP nominee’s home state made the difference in the election and the margin of victory was close enough to claim that the VP choice made the difference in that state?”
Bush beat Gore by more then two to one in Wyoming in 2000 (cite). I don’t think it meets the criteria of “the margin of victory was close enough to claim that the VP choice made the difference in that state?” Especially since Bush also won the other States in that region of the US.
It’s hard to make this case since Grover Cleveland – the Democratic candidate – was a New Yorker, too. Harrison probably won the state because the Irish in New York – who supported Cleveland in the previous election – were hoaxed into believing Cleveland would be favorable to England.
I interpreted that to mean that the national margin of victory was close enough that the VP’s home state could have affected the outcome.