The Democratic Party decided to choose a new candidate, after the enormous failure of Walter Mondale in the election of 1984. The party knew they needed a strong, centrist candidate who could unify the party. Many candidates were considered, including Reverend Jesse Jackson and Senators Al Gore and Joe Biden. Mondale's main opponent during the 1984 primary season, Senator Gary Hart, was an early frontrunner until he dropped out of the race. Finally, Governor Michael Dukakis took the lead in six of Super Tuesday's contests.
Ron Paul of Texas ran as the Libertarian Party candidate with vice presidential nominee Andre V. Marrou. During the campaign, Dukakis was seen as too liberal to appeal to the nation as a whole. His lack of military knowledge and experience was highlighted by the Republican Party, which damaged his image with conservative voters. A fierce campaign strategy by the Republicans effectively ended Dukakis's chances at winning the election, despite his success during the first presidential debate. Bush won forty of the fifty states, and a grand total of 426 electoral votes to become the next President of the United States. His popular vote victory was just over 53 percent of the vote, with Dukakis not far behind at 45 percent. Bush won several states which have gone to the Democratic candidate in every election ever since, including California and much of the Northeast.
The breakdown of candidates and electoral votes was as follows:
|Presidential Candidate||Home State||Party||Electoral Votes||Running Mate|
|George Bush||Texas||Republican||426||James Danforth Quayle|
|Michael S. Dukakis||Massachusetts||Democratic||111||Lloyd Bentsen|
|Lloyd Bentsen||Texas||Democratic||1||Michael S. Dukakis|
|Ron Paul||Texas||Libertarian||0||Andre V. Marrou|
Last Updated on : 02/10/2012