Average Third-Party Vote by State, 1948-2012

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These maps show the average third-party vote by state for two different time periods, 1972 to 2012, and 1948 to 2012. The third-party vote for this project consists of votes for all candidates other than the Democratic and Republican candidates, so this includes votes for very minor, write-in, and independent candidates as well as the main third-parties like the Greens, Libertarians, Reform, etc. I chose to separate these maps into two different time periods because there is a huge difference in third-party performance from 1948 to 1968  ascompared to later years. From 1948 to 1968 there were several third-party campaigns by southern candidates who were running against civil rights policies. Candidates like Strom Thurmond in 1948 and George Wallace in 1968 were able to carry several states in the Deep South and gain solid support in other southern states. However, after 1968 the South became the region most hostile to third-party candidates, giving very little support to candidates like John Anderson in 1980, Ross Perot in 1992, and Ralph Nader in 2000. Instead third-party strength lay in the western states and the northeast, as can be seen in the maps above. The table below shows the third-party performance by state for each of the two time periods:

Average Third-Party Vote by State, by time period:

State 1972-2012 1948-2012
Alabama 2.71% 10.99%
Alaska 9.84% 8.78%
Arizona 5.23% 4.46%
Arkansas 3.17% 6.03%
California 5.36% 4.59%
Colorado 5.93% 4.78%
Connecticut 5.32% 4.17%
Delaware 4.22% 3.92%
District of Columbia 3.63% 3.07%
Florida 3.56% 5.26%
Georgia 2.55% 5.56%
Hawaii 4.68% 3.93%
Idaho 6.71% 5.65%
Illinois 3.71% 3.22%
Indiana 3.86% 3.67%
Iowa 4.39% 3.66%
Kansas 5.41% 4.64%
Kentucky 3.09% 3.46%
Louisiana 3.55% 9.93%
Maine 6.67% 4.75%
Maryland 3.55% 3.52%
Massachusetts 6.02% 4.51%
Michigan 4.08% 3.79%
Minnesota 5.92% 4.57%
Mississippi 2.45% 13.91%
Missouri 3.78% 3.41%
Montana 6.84% 5.37%
Nebraska 4.86% 3.86%
Nevada 5.95% 5.11%
New Hampshire 5.22% 3.93%
New Jersey 4.06% 3.86%
New Mexico 4.37% 3.66%
New York 4.04% 3.69%
North Carolina 2.45% 4.19%
North Dakota 5.68% 4.55%
Ohio 4.52% 3.99%
Oklahoma 3.61% 3.88%
Oregon 6.67% 5.29%
Pennsylvania 4.08% 3.60%
Rhode Island 5.84% 4.25%
South Carolina 2.62% 12.40%
South Dakota 4.20% 3.34%
Tennessee 2.47% 4.81%
Texas 3.42% 4.24%
Utah 6.75% 5.39%
Vermont 6.82% 4.90%
Virginia 3.52% 4.97%
Washington 6.12% 5.21%
West Virginia 3.37% 2.98%
Wisconsin 4.98% 4.19%
Wyoming 5.63% 4.51%
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