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"As Maine goes, so goes the nation" is a phrase that at one time was in wide currency in United States politics. The phrase described Maine's reputation as a bellwether state for presidential elections. Specifically, Maine's September election of a governor predicted the party outcome of the November presidential election in 19 out of the 26 presidential election years from 1832 to 1932, or 73 percent of the time. The accurate years were from 1832 (if not earlier) through 1844, in 1852, from 1860 through 1876, in 1888, from 1896 through 1908 and from 1920 through 1932.

Beginning with its creation as a state in 1820 when it split off from Massachusetts, Maine held its elections for statewide and congressional offices in September, not November as did most other states, due to warmer September weather and Maine's early harvest.<ref name="harkavy">Harkavy, Jerry (1998-09-06). "'As Maine goes' tradition went - long ago". AP/South Coast Today. </ref><ref>"2006 Campaign Tip Sheet - Maine state profile". National Journal. Archived from the original on 15 November 2006. Retrieved 2006-10-13. </ref> (Maine did hold its presidential elections in November.)<ref>Mills, Paul H. (2006-09-10). "'As Maine goes'". Sun Journal (Lewiston, ME). </ref>

Maine's reputation as a bellwether began in 1840, when it voted in Edward Kent, the Whig Party candidate, as Governor of Maine. Two months later, the Whig party Presidential candidate, William Henry Harrison, won the 1840 presidential election.<ref name="harkavy"/> Again in 1888 Maine voted solidly for Republican Party candidates, and Republican Benjamin Harrison won the Presidential election despite losing the overall popular vote nationwide.<ref name="speel">Speel, Robert W. (1994). "Chapter 2: Vermont, the North, and Realignment". Changing Patterns of Voting. Penn State Press. </ref> The saying originated following this election, though it is unknown by whom.<ref name="speel"/> In subsequent election cycles, national political parties often went to considerable lengths to win Maine's early Congressional and statewide elections, despite the state's relatively small population (and hence few seats in the House of Representatives, and few electoral votes in the November presidential elections) and somewhat remote location.


As Maine goes, so goes the nation sections
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"As Maine goes, so goes the nation" is a phrase that at one time was in wide currency in United States politics. The phrase described Maine's reputation as a bellwether state for presidential elections. Specifically, Maine's September election of a governor predicted the party outcome of the November presidential election in 19 out of the 26 presidential election years from 1832 to 1932, or 73 percent of the time. The accurate years were from 1832 (if not earlier) through 1844, in 1852, from 1860 through 1876, in 1888, from 1896 through 1908 and from 1920 through 1932.

Beginning with its creation as a state in 1820 when it split off from Massachusetts, Maine held its elections for statewide and congressional offices in September, not November as did most other states, due to warmer September weather and Maine's early harvest.<ref name="harkavy">Harkavy, Jerry (1998-09-06). "'As Maine goes' tradition went - long ago". AP/South Coast Today. </ref><ref>"2006 Campaign Tip Sheet - Maine state profile". National Journal. Archived from the original on 15 November 2006. Retrieved 2006-10-13. </ref> (Maine did hold its presidential elections in November.)<ref>Mills, Paul H. (2006-09-10). "'As Maine goes'". Sun Journal (Lewiston, ME). </ref>

Maine's reputation as a bellwether began in 1840, when it voted in Edward Kent, the Whig Party candidate, as Governor of Maine. Two months later, the Whig party Presidential candidate, William Henry Harrison, won the 1840 presidential election.<ref name="harkavy"/> Again in 1888 Maine voted solidly for Republican Party candidates, and Republican Benjamin Harrison won the Presidential election despite losing the overall popular vote nationwide.<ref name="speel">Speel, Robert W. (1994). "Chapter 2: Vermont, the North, and Realignment". Changing Patterns of Voting. Penn State Press. </ref> The saying originated following this election, though it is unknown by whom.<ref name="speel"/> In subsequent election cycles, national political parties often went to considerable lengths to win Maine's early Congressional and statewide elections, despite the state's relatively small population (and hence few seats in the House of Representatives, and few electoral votes in the November presidential elections) and somewhat remote location.


As Maine goes, so goes the nation sections
Intro  As Maine goes, so goes Vermont  See also  References  

PREVIOUS: IntroNEXT: As Maine goes, so goes Vermont
<<>>