World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

United States presidential election in Massachusetts, 1972


United States presidential election in Massachusetts, 1972

United States presidential election in Massachusetts, 1972

November 7, 1972

Nominee George McGovern Richard Nixon
Party Democratic Republican
Home state South Dakota California
Running mate Sargent Shriver Spiro Agnew
Electoral vote 14 0
Popular vote 1,332,540 1,112,078
Percentage 54.20% 45.23%

Results by town. Blue indicates towns carried by George McGovern, red indicates towns carried by Richard Nixon.

President before election

Richard Nixon

Elected President

Richard Nixon

The 1972 United States presidential election in Massachusetts took place on November 7, 1972 as part of the 1972 United States presidential election, which was held throughout all 50 states and D.C. Voters chose 14 representatives, or electors to the Electoral College, who voted for President and Vice President.

South Dakota, over incumbent Republican President Richard Nixon of California. McGovern's running mate was U.S. Ambassador Sargent Shriver of Maryland, who had replaced Senator Thomas Eagleton during the campaign, while Nixon ran with incumbent Vice President Spiro Agnew of Maryland.

McGovern carried Massachusetts with 54.20% of the vote to Nixon's 45.23%, a Democratic victory margin of 8.97%.

In the midst of a massive nationwide Republican landslide in which Richard Nixon had carried 49 states, Massachusetts proved to be the only state in the nation that would cast its electoral votes for George McGovern, joined only by the District of Columbia.

McGovern also carried the state by a surprisingly comfortable 9 point margin, making the state a whopping 32% more Democratic than the national average in the 1972 election.

McGovern, a staunch liberal Democrat best known for his strong principled opposition to the Vietnam War, was painted by the Nixon campaign as an extremist too far to the left of the American mainstream at the time, and this paid off in delivering Nixon a nationwide re-election landslide.

However liberal Massachusetts would prove to be the one state that was immune to the Nixon campaign's rhetoric.

Prior to 1972, Massachusetts had been a Democratic-leaning state since 1928, and a Democratic stronghold since 1960. But McGovern's comfortable victory in 1972 still stands out, as many other traditional Democratic strongholds abandoned the Democrats in 1972. For example, neighboring Rhode Island, which normally voted similarly to Massachusetts, went to Nixon in 1972 by 6 points.

On the county map, McGovern carried nine of the state's 14 counties, including the most heavily populated parts of the state. The state's capital and largest city, Boston, would prove to be a McGovern stronghold; Suffolk County, where Boston is located, went to McGovern with 66% of the vote. Boston is one of the few areas in the country where McGovern actually outperformed Jimmy Carter's performance four years later in 1976; while Carter was narrowly winning the presidency nationally, in Suffolk County he only took 61%.

The results in 1972 made Massachusetts the only state which Richard Nixon would never carry in any of his three presidential campaigns.


  • Bumper sticker 1
  • Results 2
  • References 3
  • See also 4

Bumper sticker

Famous "Don't blame me! I'm from Massachusetts" bumper sticker.

After Nixon was re-elected, he would later resign only a year and a half into his second term due to his involvement in the Watergate scandal and the illegal activities he committed. Afterwards, a bumper sticker with the words "Don't blame me! I'm from Massachusetts" became a symbol of the sentiments felt by Massachusetts residents after the Watergate scandal and Nixon's resignation due to criminal activity, it served as a proverbial message to the 49 other states not to "blame them" for Nixon's election, as Massachusetts was the only state that voted against Nixon's re-election.[1]


County Results



United States presidential election in Massachusetts, 1972[2]
Party Candidate Votes Percentage Electoral votes
Democratic George McGovern 1,332,540 54.20% 14
Republican Richard Nixon 1,112,078 45.23% 0
Socialist Workers Linda Jenness 10,600 0.43% 0
American Independent John G. Schmitz (Write-in) 2,877 0.12% 0
Write-ins Write-ins 661 0.02% 0
Totals 2,458,756 100.00% 14
Voter Turnout (Voting age/Registered) 62%/79%


  1. ^
  2. ^

See also

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.