There’s less than a year to go until the next US presidential election. With the Democratic candidate to be announced in 2020, it’s still anyone’s guess as to who will challenge Donald Trump. Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, and Bernie Sanders are all in with a shout of winning the nomination, but Trump is still the clear favorite in the latest 2020 US presidential election betting odds.
US presidential elections have given us some great excitement over the years. The battle to become the leader of the free world can be very intense and we’ve seen some close-fought campaigns. As we gear up for another dramatic election in 2020, let’s take a look back at every presidential election since the turn of the century.
2000: George W. Bush defeats Al Gore
This was one of the closest presidential elections of all time, with just five Electoral College votes separating George W. Bush and Al Gore. Republican candidate Bush is the son of former President George H.W. Bush, who served in the Oval Office for a single term from 1989-1993. Politics runs in the Bush family, which meant the public had a degree of faith that Bush Jr. would be up to the task.
Democratic candidate Gore was the incumbent vice president at the time, under the Bill Clinton administration, and was a keen advocate for action on the issue of climate change. On a dramatic election day, Gore actually won the popular vote by a small margin but it wasn’t quite enough as Bush secured enough Electoral College votes to win the presidency.
2004: George W. Bush defeats John Kerry
Bush secured a second term in the White House by defeating Democratic candidate John Kerry in 2004. It was a more comfortable victory than four years previously, although still close, as Bush won by 286 Electoral College votes to Kerry’s 251. Victory in crucial swing states Ohio, Iowa and New Mexico helped him over the line.
While it was a disappointing defeat for the Massachusetts senator Kerry, he would later go on to serve as Secretary of State in the second term of Barack Obama’s administration.
2008: Barack Obama defeats John McCain
After Bush’s second term came to an end, the presidency was up for grabs. Army veteran John McCain was the candidate seeking to keep Republican control of the White House, but he came up against Barack Obama, the junior US senator for the state of Illinois.
Obama was aiming to become the first African-American president of the United States, and he succeeded with a significant margin of victory, claiming 365 Electoral College votes to McCain’s 173. It was a decisive win and a landmark moment in American politics. Obama strongly opposed the Iraq war, and this brought him popularity among voters who had disagreed with Bush’s foreign policies.
2012: Barack Obama defeats Mitt Romney
Obama was firm favorite to retain the presidency in 2012 and did so with another majority victory in both the Electoral College and popular vote. Mitt Romney was his opponent, the former governor of Massachusetts. Much of the election campaign centered on domestic policy in the wake of the financial crisis.
Obama’s win secured a second term in office, and although it was a slightly smaller margin than 2008, the results proved he was still popular among the US public.
2016: Donald Trump defeats Hillary Clinton
When Trump announced his intentions to run for president, not many people took him seriously. But as the months went by he garnered more and more popularity and won the Republican nomination. His opponent was Hillary Clinton, who was aiming to become the first female US president.
Clinton was the favorite to win the election, but there was a surprise result on Election Day as Trump won six states that Obama had won in 2012: Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. Despite losing the popular vote, victory in those vital swing states helped Trump secure 304 Electoral College votes to Clinton’s 227 and win the presidency.