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The Long, Long Presidential Campaign



The Long, Long Presidential Campaign

The Long, Long Presidential Campaign

Yesterday, Ted Cruz was the first potential nominee to announce a campaign for the 2016 election. With Cruz’s announcement a long 596 days before the election date, today’s visualization from The Economist looks at how often in history the early bird gets the worm.

For the Republicans, the first to announce has not got the nomination since at least 1952. Last cycle, Newt Gingrich was first to throw his hat in the ring in on May 11, 2011. However, it was just under a year later on May 2, 2012 that he would withdraw and offer his support to the eventual nominee, Mitt Romney.

For the Democrats, Mike Gravel has been the earliest to announce in recent history – that was in 2008. It was far more than two years in advance of the election, and he went on to garner less than 1% in polls. George McGovern, however, did win the nomination in 1972. By the final week of his campaign, he knew he would lose to Richard Nixon and the final tally was 61% to 37% in favour of the Nixon-Agnew ticket.

John F. Kennedy, the first to announce in 1960, did go on to be America’s 35th President. However, that was at a time when the earliest announcements for the bid were less than one year before.

Original graphic from: The Economist

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