On November 3, Alabama voters set a new benchmark for back-to-back support for a presidential candidate.
The margin of victory for President Donald Trump on Election Day, together with his win back in 2016, rivals the biggest back-to-back wins during a presidential contest in Alabama since Franklin D. Roosevelt 76 years ago.
Trump wins Alabama
Around 97 percent of votes were counted in the state, and President Trump was declared the clear winner by a 28.02 percent point margin, which is less than a point higher than his margin of victory of 27.72 percent points over 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, according to The Washington Post.
Steve Flowers, a former Republican state lawmaker who now writes about politics in different states, said that Trump had won the heart and soul of the conservative base. Trump delivered for the conservative cause, like appointing three conservative judges at the Supreme Court. This has energized his Republican base.
President Trump's one-sided tilts in the state do not come close to that of Roosevelt, who won the election of 1932 by 70.61 points, 73.56 points in 1936, 70.88 points in 1940, and 63.08 points in 1944, according to WVTM.
In 1932, Roosevelt defeated Alf Landon, a Republican, by Alabama's largest margin of victory in a presidential contest since the voters rendered a near-unanimous decision for Andrew Jackson back in 1832.
Roosevelt lost only two states, Vermont and Maine, in the 1932 election, which is considered one of the largest landslide victories by a president in the history of American politics.
Wayne Flynt, a historian and professor at Auburn University, said that during the times of economic crisis, voters from Alabama demonstrated a tendency toward the more liberal and populistic candidates such as Franklin Roosevelt. But after the World War II, there was a shift in politics.
Flynt added that Nixon used the Republican "Southern Strategy" that was suggested to him by a conservative in South Carolina. It became the template of white resistance to racial change, according to ABC News.
The said strategy has dominated Alabama ever since, and it changed the GOP in the state from moderate racial positions to the hard-right positions seen today.
President Trump's margin of victory of 27.72 percentage points back in 2016 was the most convincing win in a presidential contest in Alabama since the 46.9 percentage points won by Republican Richard Nixon, who at the time defeated Democrat George McGovern.
In 1968, Nixon only got 14 percent of the votes in Alabama. That was because former Alabama Gov. George Wallace was also on the ballot, and he amassed 65.9 percent of the vote. Wallace was running as an Independent, and he scored his victory in his home state. He won five states all in all.
In 1964, Arizona Republican Barry Goldwater won Alabama by 39 percentage points, making it the first time a Republican won a presidential contest in Alabama since Ulysses S. Grant in 1868 and 1872.
In 1952 and 1956, Alabama handed Democratic nominee Adlai Stevenson victories over President Eisenhower. Stevenson won Alabama by a margin of 29.5 percentage points, which is more than President Trump's 2016 and 2020 wins.
Related Article: US Election 2020: Results and Exit Polls, Donald Trump vs Joe Biden