Solid South

Arkansas voted Democratic in all 23 presidential elections from 1876 through 1964; other states were not quite as solid but generally supported Democrats for president.

The Solid South or Southern bloc was the electoral voting bloc of the states of the Southern United States for issues that were regarded as particularly important to the interests of white Democrats in the southern states. The Southern bloc existed especially between 1877 (the end of Reconstruction) and 1964 (the year of the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964). During this period, the Democratic Party controlled state legislatures; most local and state officeholders in the South were Democrats, as were federal politicians elected from these states. Southern Democrats disenfranchised blacks in every state of the former Confederacy at the turn of the century. This resulted essentially in a one-party system, in which a candidate's victory in Democratic primary elections was tantamount to election to the office itself. White primaries were another means that the Democrats used to consolidate their political power, excluding blacks from voting in primaries.[1]

The "Solid South" is a loose term referring to the states that made up the voting bloc at any point in time. The Southern region as defined by U.S. Census comprises 16 states plus Washington, D.C.—Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Washington, D.C., West Virginia, Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas. This definition of the Southern region does not necessarily correspond precisely to the states in the definition of the Solid South. Maryland was occasionally considered part of the Solid South, as was Missouri, although it is classified as a Midwestern state by the U.S. Census. A former slave state, it became dominated by Democrats. The Southwestern United States were also just as solidly supportive of Democrats throughout the same period.

After the 1960s and passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, ensuring federal enforcement of registration and voting, African Americans in the region were able to register and vote, rejoining the political system for the first time since the turn of the 20th century. While nearly 6 million African Americans had left the region by then in the Great Migration to other areas of the country, most of those who remained became affiliated with the Democratic Party. Its national leaders had supported the civil rights movement. Around the same time, white conservatives began to shift to the Republican Party, which by 2000 attracted most of the white voters. African Americans have elected numerous candidates of their choice, generally Democrats, from districts where their votes have been concentrated.


United States during the Civil War. Blue represents Union states, including those admitted during the war; light blue represents border states; red represents Confederate states. Unshaded areas were not states before or during the Civil War

At the start of the American Civil War, there were 34 states in the United States, 15 of which were slave states. Eleven of these slave states seceded from the United States to form the Confederacy: South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, Tennessee, and North Carolina. The slave states that stayed in the Union were Maryland, Missouri, Delaware, and Kentucky, and they were referred to as the border states. In 1861, West Virginia was created out of Virginia, and admitted in 1863 and considered a border state. By the time the Emancipation Proclamation was made in 1863 Tennessee was already in Union control. Accordingly the Proclamation applied only to the 10 remaining Confederate states. Several of the border states abolished slavery before the end of the Civil War—the District of Columbia in 1862, Maryland in 1864,[2] Missouri in 1865,[3] one of the Confederate states, Tennessee in 1865,[4] and West Virginia in 1865.[5] However, slavery persisted in Delaware,[6] Kentucky,[7] and 10 of the 11 former Confederate states, until the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution abolished slavery throughout the United States on December 18, 1865.

Abolition of slavery was a condition of the return of local rule in those states that had declared their secession. The Reconstruction era came to an end in 1877.

Democratic dominance of the South originated in the struggle of white Southerners during and after Reconstruction to establish white supremacy and disenfranchise blacks. The U.S. government under the Republican Party had defeated the Confederacy, abolished slavery, and enfranchised blacks. In several states, black voters were a majority or close to it. Republicans supported by blacks controlled state governments in these states. Thus the Democratic Party became the vehicle for the white supremacist "Redeemers". The Ku Klux Klan, as well as other insurgent paramilitary groups such as the White League and Red Shirts from 1874, acted as "the military arm of the Democratic party" to disrupt Republican organizing, and intimidate and suppress black voters.[8]

By 1876, Redeemer Democrats had taken control of all the state governments in the South. From then until the 1960s, state and local government in the South was almost entirely monopolized by Democrats. The Democrats elected all but a handful of U.S. Representatives and Senators, and Democratic presidential candidates regularly swept the region – from 1880 through 1944, winning 182 of 187 states. The Democrats reinforced the loyalty of white voters by emphasizing the suffering of the South during the war at the hands of "Yankee invaders" under Republican leadership, and the noble service of their white forefathers in "the Lost Cause". This rhetoric was effective with many Southerners. However, this propaganda was totally ineffective in areas that had been loyal to the Union during the war, such as eastern Tennessee. Eastern Tennessee welcomed U.S. troops as liberators, and voted Republican after the war, even to the present.[9]

The "Solid South" from 1880–1912.

Even after white Democrats regained control of state legislatures, some blacks were elected to local offices and state legislatures in the South. Black U.S. Representatives were elected from the South as late as the 1890s, usually from overwhelmingly black areas.

Also in the 1890s, the Populists developed a following in the South, among poor whites resentful of the Democratic party establishment. Populists formed alliances with Republicans (including blacks) and challenged the Democrat bosses, even defeating them in some cases.[10]

To prevent such coalitions in the future and to end the violence associated with suppressing the black vote during elections, southern Democrats acted to disfranchise both blacks and poor whites. From 1890 to 1910, beginning with Mississippi, southern states adopted new constitutions and other laws including various devices to restrict voter registration, disfranchising virtually all black and many poor white voters.[11] These devices applied to all citizens; in practice they disfranchised most blacks and also "would remove [from voter registration rolls] the less educated, less organized, more impoverished whites as well – and that would ensure one-party Democratic rules through most of the 20th century in the South."[12][13] All the southern states adopted provisions that restricted voter registration and suffrage, including new requirements for poll taxes, longer residency, and subjective literacy tests. Some also used the device of grandfather clauses, exempting voters who had a grandfather voting by a particular year (usually before the Civil War, when blacks could not vote.)[14]

White Democrats also opposed Republican economic policies such as the high tariff and the gold standard, both of which were seen as benefiting Northern industrial interests at the expense of the agrarian South in the 19th century. But holding all political power was at the heart of their resistance.

White Democrats passed "Jim Crow" laws which reinforced white supremacy through racial segregation.[15]

In the Deep South (South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Texas), Democrat dominance was overwhelming, with 80%–90% of the vote, and only a tiny number of Republican state legislators or local officials. In the Upper South (Tennessee, North Carolina, and Virginia), Republicans retained a significant presence, even winning occasional governorships and often drawing over 40% in presidential votes.

Democratic candidates won by large margins in the Southern states in every presidential election from the election of 1876 to 1948 except for 1928, when the Democrat candidate was Al Smith, a Catholic New Yorker; and even in that election, the divided South provided Smith with nearly three-fourths of his electoral votes. Scholar Richard Valelly credited Woodrow Wilson's 1912 election to the disfranchisement of blacks in the South, and also noted far-reaching effects in Congress, where the Democratic South gained "about 25 extra seats in Congress for each decade between 1903 and 1953."[11]

The Fourteenth Amendment provided for apportionment of representation in Congress to be reduced if a state disenfranchised part of its population. But this clause was never applied to southern states that disenfranchised blacks. No blacks were elected to any office in the South for decades after the turn of the century; and they were also excluded from juries and other participation in civil life.[11]

By the 1920s, as memories of the Civil War faded, the Solid South cracked slightly. For instance, a Republican was elected U.S. Representative from Texas in 1920, serving until 1932. The Republican national landslides in 1920 and 1928 had some effects. In the 1920 elections, Tennessee elected a Republican governor, elected Republicans to 5 of the state's 10 U.S. House seats and became the first former Confederate state since Reconstruction to vote for the Republican candidate for U.S. President. However, with the Democratic national landslide of 1932, the South again became solidly Democrat.

Southern demography began to change as well. From 1910 through 1970, about 6.5 million black southerners moved to urban areas in other parts of the country in the Great Migration.

From 1876 through 1944, the national Democratic party opposed any calls for civil rights for blacks. In Congress southern Democrats blocked such efforts as Republicans made on the issue.[16]

In the 1930s, black voters outside the South largely switched to the Democrats, and other groups with an interest in civil rights (notably Jews, Catholics, and academic intellectuals) became more powerful in the party. This led to the national Democrats adopting a civil rights plank in 1948. A faction of Deep South Democrats bolted the party, and ran their own "Dixiecrat" presidential ticket, which carried four states, South Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana.[17] Even before then, a number of conservative Southern Democrats felt chagrin at the national party's growing friendliness to organized labor during the Franklin D. Roosevelt administration, and began splitting their tickets as early as the 1930s.

The Republican Party began to make gains in the South, building on other cultural conflicts as well. Demographics began to change southern states in other ways. For instance, Florida began to expand rapidly, with retirees and other migrants from other regions becoming a majority of the population. Many of these new residents brought their Republican voting habits with them, diluting traditional Southern hostility to the Republicans.

By the mid-1960s, changes had come in many of the southern states. Former Dixiecrat Senator Strom Thurmond of South Carolina changed parties in 1964; Texas elected a Republican Senator in 1961; Florida and Arkansas elected Republican governors in 1966. In the upper South, where Republicans had always been a small presence, Republicans gained a few House and Senate seats.

Republican President Richard Nixon adopted a "Southern Strategy" for the presidential election of 1972: continue enforcement of the civil rights legislation of the 1960s, but be quiet about it, so that offended Southern whites would continue to blame the Democrats, while talking up the Democrats' increasing association with liberal views. He was aided by centrist Democrats' attacks on the eventual nominee as a radical. This strategy was wildly successful – Nixon carried every southern state by huge margins.

The South was still overwhelmingly Democratic at the state level, with majorities in all state legislatures, and most U.S. Representatives as well. Over the next 30 years, this gradually changed. Veteran Democrat officeholders retired or died, and older voters who were still rigidly Democrat also died off. There were also increasing numbers of migrants from other areas, especially in Florida, Texas, and North Carolina.

With the "Republican Revolution" in the 1994 elections, Republicans captured a majority of Southern House seats for the first time.

Today, the South is considered a Republican stronghold at the state and federal levels, with Republicans holding majorities in every southern state after the 2014 elections. Political experts have often cited a southernization of politics following the fall of the Solid South.


Oklahoma was not a state during Reconstruction, being admitted as a state only in 1907. Since that time, its voting pattern has been similar to that of other Southern states, so it may be considered part of the Solid South.

West Virginia

For West Virginia "reconstruction, in a sense, began in 1861...".[18] Unlike the other border states West Virginia did not send the majority of its soldiers to the Union.[19] The prospect of those returning ex-Confederates prompted the Wheeling state government to implement laws that restricted their right of suffrage, practicing law and teaching, access to the legal system, and subjected them to "war trespass" lawsuits.[20] The lifting of these restrictions in 1871 resulted in the election of John J. Jacob, a Democrat, to the governorship. It also led to the rejection of the war-time constitution by public vote and a new constitution written under the leadership of ex-Confederates such as Samuel Price, Allen T. Caperton and Charles James Faulkner. In 1876 the state Democratic ticket of eight candidates were all elected, seven of whom were Confederate veterans.[21] For nearly a generation West Virginia was part of the Solid South.[22][23]

However, Republicans returned to power in 1896, controlling the governorship for eight of the next nine terms, and electing 82 of 106 U.S. Representatives. In 1932, as the nation swung to the Democrats, West Virginia became solidly Democratic. It was perhaps the most reliably Democratic state in the nation between 1932 and 1996, being one of just two states (along with Minnesota) to vote Republican president as few as 3 times in that interval. Moreover, unlike Minnesota (or other nearly as reliably Democratic states like Massachusetts and Rhode Island), it usually had a unanimous (or nearly unanimous) congressional delegation and only elected two Republicans as Governor (albeit for a combined 20 years between them). West Virginia voters shifted toward the Republican Party from 1996 onward, as the Democratic Party became more strongly identified with environmental policies anathema to the state's coal industry and with socially liberal policies, and it can now be called a solidly red state.[24][25]

Presidential voting

Missouri goes for Republican Theodore Roosevelt in the 1904 election. (Cartoon by John T. McCutcheon.)

The 1896 presidential election resulted in the first break in the Solid South. Florida politician Marion L. Dawson, writing in the North American Review, observed- "The victorious party not only held in line those States which are usually relied upon to give Republican majorities... More significant still, it invaded the Solid South, and bore off West Virginia, Maryland, and Kentucky; caused North Carolina to tremble in the balance and reduced Democratic majorities in the following States: Alabama, 39,000; Arkansas, 29,000; Florida, 6,000; Georgia, 49,000; Louisiana, 33,000; South Carolina, 6,000; and Texas, 29,000. These facts, taken together with the great landslide of 1894 and 1895, which swept Missouri and Tennessee, Maryland and Kentucky over into the country of the enemy, have caused Southern statesmen to seriously consider whether the so-called Solid South is not now a thing of past history;".[26]

In 1904, Missouri supported Republican Theodore Roosevelt, while Maryland awarded its electors to Democrat Alton Parker, despite Roosevelt's winning by 51 votes.[27]

By the 1916 election, disfranchisement of blacks and many poor whites was complete, and voter rolls had dropped dramatically in the South. Closing out Republican supporters gave a bump to southerner Woodrow Wilson, who took all the electors across the South, as the Republican Party was stifled without support by African Americans.[11]

The 1920 election was a referendum on President Woodrow Wilson's League of Nations. Pro-isolation sentiment in the South benefited Republican Warren G. Harding who won Tennessee and Missouri. In 1924, Coolidge won Kentucky and Missouri. In 1928, Hoover, perhaps benefiting from bias against his Roman Catholic Anti-Prohibition opponent Al Smith, won not only Kentucky, Missouri, and Tennessee, but also Florida, North Carolina, Texas, and Virginia. Maryland changed to the Republicans in the 1920s and would not vote Democratic again until Franklin Delano Roosevelt's 1932 Presidential landslide over Republican President Herbert Hoover.

The South appeared "solid" again during the period of Franklin D. Roosevelt's political dominance, as his welfare programs and military buildup invested considerable money in the South, benefiting many of its citizens, including during the Dust Bowl.

Democratic President Harry S. Truman's support of the civil rights movement, combined with the adoption of a civil rights plank in the 1948 Democratic platform, prompted many Southerners to walk out of the Democratic National Convention and form the Dixiecrat Party. This splinter party played a significant role in the 1948 election; the Dixiecrat candidate, Strom Thurmond, carried Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, and South Carolina. In the elections of 1952 and 1956, the popular Republican Dwight D. Eisenhower, commander of the Allied armed forces during World War II, carried several southern states, with especially strong showings in the new suburbs. In 1956, Eisenhower also carried Louisiana, becoming the first Republican to win the state since Rutherford B. Hayes in 1876. The rest of the Deep South voted for his Democratic opponent, Adlai Stevenson. The 1948 election also marked Maryland's permanent defection from the Solid South as the expansion of the federal government led to a population explosion in the state that changed Maryland politically into a Northeastern State.

In the 1960 election, the Democratic nominee, John F. Kennedy, continued his party's tradition of selecting a Southerner as the vice presidential candidate (in this case, Senator Lyndon B. Johnson of Texas). Kennedy and Johnson, however, both supported civil rights. In October 1960, when Martin Luther King Jr. was arrested at a peaceful sit-in in Atlanta, Georgia, Kennedy placed a sympathetic phone call to King's wife, Coretta Scott King, and Robert Kennedy helped secure King's release. King expressed his appreciation for these calls. Although King made no endorsement, his father, who had previously endorsed Republican Richard Nixon, switched his support to Kennedy.

Because of these and other events, the Democrats lost ground with white voters in the South, as those same voters increasingly lost control over what was once a whites-only Democratic Party in much of the South. The 1960 election was the first in which a Republican presidential candidate received electoral votes in the South while losing nationally. Nixon carried Virginia, Tennessee, and Florida. Though Kennedy also won Alabama and Mississippi, slates of unpledged electors, representing Democratic segregationists, would award the states' electoral votes to Harry Byrd.

The parties' positions on civil rights continued to evolve in the run up to the 1964 election. The Democratic candidate, Johnson, who had become president after Kennedy's assassination, spared no effort to win passage of a strong Civil Rights Act of 1964. After signing the landmark legislation, Johnson said to his aide, Bill Moyers: "I think we just delivered the South to the Republican Party for a long time to come."[28] In contrast, Johnson's Republican opponent, Senator Barry Goldwater of Arizona, voted against the Civil Rights Act, believing it enhanced the federal government and infringed on the private property rights of businessmen. Goldwater did support civil rights in general and universal suffrage, and voted for the 1957 and 1960 Civil Rights Acts as well as the 24th Amendment, which banned poll taxes as a requirement for voting. This was one of the devices that states used to disfranchise minorities and the poor.

That November, Johnson won a landslide electoral victory, and the Republicans suffered significant losses in Congress. Goldwater, however, besides carrying his home state of Arizona, carried the Deep South: voters in Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, and South Carolina had switched parties for the first time since Reconstruction. Goldwater notably won only in Southern states that had voted against Republican Richard Nixon in 1960, while not winning a single state that Nixon had carried. This was a complete inversion of the electoral pattern of the previous presidential election. Prior to the 1956 election, the region had almost always provided the only victories for Democratic challengers to popular Republican incumbent presidents. Now, however, the South had provided a Republican challenger with electoral victories against a popular Democratic incumbent.

According to a quantitative analysis for the National Bureau of Economic Research, racism played a central role in the decline in relative white Southern Democratic identification.[29]

"Southern strategy": end of Solid South

Main article: Southern strategy

In the 1968 election, the Republican candidate, Richard Nixon, saw this trend and capitalized on it with his "Southern strategy." His strategy was designed to appeal to white Southerners who were more conservative than the leaders of the national Democratic Party. As a result of the strategy and conservative Southerners reactions against Democratic leaders, Hubert Humphrey was almost shut out in the South, carrying only Texas, with the rest of the South being divided between Nixon and the American Independent Party candidate George C. Wallace, the governor of Alabama, who had gained fame for opposing integration. Nationwide, Nixon won a decisive electoral college victory, although he received only a plurality of the popular vote. Nixon won the 1972 election in a landslide.

At the 1976 election, Jimmy Carter, a Southern governor, gave Democrats a short-lived comeback in the South (winning every state in the old Confederacy except for Virginia, which was narrowly lost). But, in his unsuccessful 1980 re-election bid, the only Southern states he won were his native state of Georgia and West Virginia. The year 1976 was the last year a Democratic presidential candidate won a majority of Southern electoral votes. The Republicans took all the region's electoral votes in the 1984 election and every state except West Virginia in 1988.

In the 1992 election and 1996, when the Democratic ticket consisted of two Southerners, (Bill Clinton and Al Gore), the Democrats and Republicans split the region. In both elections, Clinton won Arkansas, Louisiana, Kentucky, Tennessee, and West Virginia, while the Republican won Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia. Bill Clinton won Georgia in 1992, but lost it in 1996 to Bob Dole. Conversely, Clinton lost Florida in 1992 to George Bush, but won it in 1996.

In 2000, however, Gore received no electoral votes from the South, even from his home state of Tennessee. The popular vote in Florida was extraordinarily close in awarding the state's electoral votes to George W. Bush. This pattern continued in the 2004 election; the Democratic ticket of John Kerry and John Edwards received no electoral votes from the South, even though Edwards was from North Carolina, and was born in South Carolina. However, in the 2008 election, Barack Obama won the former Republican strongholds of Virginia and North Carolina as well as Florida; Obama won Virginia and Florida again in 2012 and lost North Carolina by only 2.04%.

While the South was shifting from the Democrats to the Republicans, the Northeastern United States went the other way. The Northeastern United States is defined by the US Census Bureau as Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, and the New England States although politically the Northeast also includes Maryland and Delaware. Well into the 1980s, the Northeast was a bastion of the Republican Party. The Democratic Party made steady gains there, however, and in 1992, 1996, 2004, 2008 and 2012 all eleven Northeastern states, from Maryland to Maine, voted for the Democrats. The same trend can be observed on the West Coast and Upper Midwest (excluding The Dakotas and including Illinois and Iowa) of the nation, as they shifted from solidly Republican and swing-states, respectively, to a change in political party strength.

"Southern strategy" today

Although Republicans gradually began doing better in presidential elections in the South starting in 1952, Republicans did not finish taking over Southern politics at the non presidential level until the elections of November 2010. Today, the South is dominated by Republicans at both the state and presidential level. Republicans control all 22 of the other legislative bodies in the former Confederacy, and all but one in a border state. There are currently no white Democratic congressmen from the Deep South. Until November 2010, Democrats had a majority in the Alabama, North Carolina, Mississippi, Arkansas and Louisiana Legislatures, a majority in the Kentucky House of Representatives and Virginia Senate, a near majority of the Tennessee House of Representatives, and a majority of the U.S. House delegations from Arkansas, North Carolina, Mississippi, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia, as well as near-even splits of the Georgia and Alabama U.S. House delegations. During the 2010 midterm elections, Republicans swept the South, successfully reelecting every Senate incumbent, electing freshmen Marco Rubio in Florida and Rand Paul in Kentucky, and defeated a Democrat incumbent in Arkansas for a seat now held by John Boozman. In the House, Republicans reelected every incumbent except for Joseph Cao of New Orleans and defeated several Democratic incumbents. Republicans are now the majority in the congressional delegations of every Southern state. Every Solid South state, with the exceptions of Arkansas, Kentucky, North Carolina, and West Virginia, also elected or reelected Republicans governors. Most significantly, Republicans took control of both houses of the Alabama and North Carolina State Legislatures for the first time since Reconstruction, with Mississippi and Louisiana flipping a year later during their off-year elections. Even in Arkansas, the GOP won three of six statewide down-ballot positions for which they had often not fielded candidates until recently; they also went from eight to 15 out of 35 seats in the State Senate and from 28 to 45 out of 100 in the State House of Representatives. In 2012, the Republicans finally took control of the Arkansas State Legislature and the North Carolina Governorship, leaving West Virginia as the last Solid South state with the Democrats still in control of the state legislature, as well as the governorship. In 2014, though, both houses of the West Virginia legislature were finally taken by the GOP, and most other legislative chambers in the South up for election that year saw increased GOP gains. Arkansas's governorship finally flipped GOP in 2014 when the incumbent termed out, as did every other statewide office not previously held by the Republicans. Many analysts believe the so-called "Southern Strategy" that has been employed by Republicans since the 1960s is now virtually complete, with Republicans in firm, almost total, control of political offices in the South.

The biggest exception to this trend has been the state of Virginia. It got an earlier start in the trend towards the Republican party than the rest of the region. It voted Republican for president in 11 of the 12 elections between 1952 and 1996, while no other Southern state did so more than 9 times (that state, Florida, is the other potential exception to the trend, but to a significantly lesser extent). Moreover, it had a Republican Governor more often than not between 1970 and 2002, and Republicans held at least half the seats in the Virginia congressional delegation from 1968 to 1990 (although the Democrats had a narrow minority throughout the 1990s), while with single-term exceptions (Alabama from 1965-1967, Tennessee from 1973-1975, and South Carolina from 1981-1983) and the exception of Florida (which had its delegation turn majority-Republican in 1989) Democrats held at least half the seats in the delegations of the rest of the Southern states until the Republican Revolution of 1994. However, thanks in large part to massive population growth in Northern Virginia and the orientation of that population with the political ideologies of the solidly Democratic Northeast, the Democratic party has won nearly every major statewide race since 2005, with the single exception being the Governor's race in 2009.[30]

Solid South in Presidential elections

While Republicans occasionally won southern states in elections in which they won the presidency in the Solid South, it was not until 1960 that a Republican carried one of these states while losing the national election.

Presidential l votes in southern states since 1876
Year Alabama Arkansas Florida Georgia Kentucky Louisiana Mississippi North Carolina Oklahoma South Carolina Tennessee Texas Virginia West Virginia
1876 Tilden Tilden Hayes[31] Tilden Tilden Hayes[31] Tilden Tilden No election[32] Hayes[31] Tilden Tilden Tilden Tilden
1880 Hancock Hancock Hancock Hancock Hancock Hancock Hancock Hancock No election Hancock Hancock Hancock Hancock Hancock
1884 Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland No election Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland
1888 Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland No election Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland
1892 Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland No election Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland Cleveland
1896 Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan McKinley Bryan Bryan Bryan No election Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan McKinley
1900 Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan No election Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan McKinley
1904 Parker Parker Parker Parker Parker Parker Parker Parker No election Parker Parker Parker Parker Roosevelt
1908 Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan Bryan Taft
1912 Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson
1916 Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Wilson Hughes
1920 Cox Cox Cox Cox Cox Cox Cox Cox Harding Cox Harding Cox Cox Harding
1924 Davis Davis Davis Davis Coolidge Davis Davis Davis Davis Davis Davis Davis Davis Coolidge
1928 Smith Smith Hoover Smith Hoover Smith Smith Hoover Hoover Smith Hoover Hoover Hoover Hoover
1932 Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt
1936 Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt
1940 Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt
1944 Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt Roosevelt
1948 Thurmond Truman Truman Truman Truman Thurmond Thurmond Truman Truman Thurmond Truman Truman Truman Truman
1952 Stevenson Stevenson Eisenhower Stevenson Stevenson Stevenson Stevenson Stevenson Eisenhower Stevenson Eisenhower Eisenhower Eisenhower Stevenson
1956 Stevenson Stevenson Eisenhower Stevenson Eisenhower Eisenhower Stevenson Stevenson Eisenhower Stevenson Eisenhower Eisenhower Eisenhower Eisenhower
1960 Byrd[33] Kennedy Nixon Kennedy Nixon Kennedy Byrd Kennedy Nixon Kennedy Nixon Kennedy Nixon Kennedy
1964 Goldwater Johnson Johnson Goldwater Johnson Goldwater Goldwater Johnson Johnson Goldwater Johnson Johnson Johnson Johnson
1968 Wallace Wallace Nixon Wallace Nixon Wallace Wallace Nixon[34] Nixon Nixon Nixon Humphrey Nixon Humphrey
1972 Nixon Nixon Nixon Nixon Nixon Nixon Nixon Nixon Nixon Nixon Nixon Nixon Nixon Nixon
1976 Carter Carter Carter Carter Carter Carter Carter Carter Ford Carter Carter Carter Ford Carter
1980 Reagan Reagan Reagan Carter Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Carter
1984 Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan Reagan
1988 Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Dukakis
1992 Bush Clinton Bush Clinton Clinton Clinton Bush Bush Bush Bush Clinton Bush Bush Clinton
1996 Dole Clinton Clinton Dole Clinton Clinton Dole Dole Dole Dole Clinton Dole Dole Clinton
2000 Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush
2004 Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush Bush
2008 McCain McCain Obama McCain McCain McCain McCain Obama McCain McCain McCain McCain Obama McCain
2012 RomneyRomneyObama RomneyRomney Romney Romney Romney Romney Romney Romney Romney ObamaRomney
2016 TrumpTrumpTrump TrumpTrump Trump Trump Trump TrumpTrump Trump Trump ClintonTrump
Year Alabama Arkansas Florida Georgia Kentucky Louisiana Mississippi North Carolina Oklahoma South Carolina Tennessee Texas Virginia West Virginia
Democratic Party nominee
Republican Party nominee
Third-party nominee or write-in candidate

Bold denotes candidates elected as president

South in gubernatorial elections

Officials who acted as governor for less than ninety days are excluded from this chart. This chart is intended to be a visual exposition of party strength in the solid south and the dates listed are not exactly precise. Governors not elected in their own right are listed in italics.

The parties are as follows:   Democratic (D),   Farmers' Alliance (FA),   Prohibition (P),   Readjuster (RA),   Republican (R).

Governors of southern states since 1877
Year AlabamaArkansasFloridaGeorgiaKentuckyLouisianaMississippiNorth CarolinaOklahomaSouth CarolinaTennesseeTexasVirginiaWest Virginia
1877 George S. Houston (D) William Read Miller (D) George F. Drew (D) Alfred H. Colquitt (D) James B. McCreary (D) Francis T. Nicholls (D) John M. Stone (D)[35] Zebulon Baird Vance (D) Unorganized territory Wade Hampton III (D) James D. Porter (D) Richard B. Hubbard (D)[36] James L. Kemper (D) Henry M. Mathews (D)
1878 Frederick W. M. Holliday (D)
1879 Rufus W. Cobb (D) Thomas Jordan Jarvis (D) William Dunlap Simpson (D)[36] Albert S. Marks (D) Oran M. Roberts (D)
1880 Luke P. Blackburn (D) Louis A. Wiltz (D)[37] Thomas Bothwell Jeter (D)
1881 Thomas James Churchill (D) William D. Bloxham (D) Samuel D. McEnery (D) Johnson Hagood (D) Alvin Hawkins (R) Jacob B. Jackson (D)
1882 Robert Lowry (D) Hugh Smith Thompson (D)[38] William E. Cameron (RA)
1883 Edward A. O'Neal (D) James Henderson Berry (D) Henry Dickerson McDaniel (D) William B. Bate (D) John Ireland (D)
1884 J. Proctor Knott (D)
1885 Simon Pollard Hughes, Jr. (D) Edward A. Perry (D) Alfred Moore Scales (D) (D) Emanuel Willis Wilson (D)[39]
1886 Fitzhugh Lee (D)
1887 Thomas Seay (D) John B. Gordon (D) Robert Love Taylor (D) Lawrence Sullivan Ross (D)
1888 Simon Bolivar Buckner, Sr. (D) Francis T. Nicholls (D)
1889 James Philip Eagle (D) Francis P. Fleming (D) Daniel Gould Fowle (D)
1890 John M. Stone (D) Governors of Oklahoma Territory

(appointed by the President of the United States with the consent of the Senate)

Philip W. McKinney (D) Aretas B. Fleming (D)[40]
1891 Thomas G. Jones (D) William J. Northen (D) Thomas Michael Holt (D) John P. Buchanan (D) Jim Hogg (D)
1892 John Y. Brown (D) Murphy J. Foster (D)
1893 William Meade Fishback (D) Henry L. Mitchell (D) Elias Carr (D) Peter Turney (D) William A. MacCorkle (D)
1894 Charles Triplett O'Ferrall (D)
1895 William C. Oates (D) James Paul Clarke (D) William Yates Atkinson (D) Charles A. Culberson (D)
1896 William O. Bradley (R) Anselm J. McLaurin (D)
1897 Joseph F. Johnston (D) Daniel Webster Jones (D) William D. Bloxham (D) Daniel Lindsay Russell (R) Robert Love Taylor (D) George W. Atkinson (R)
1898 James Hoge Tyler (D)
1899 Allen D. Candler (D) Benton McMillin (D) Joseph D. Sayers (D)
1900 [41] William Wright Heard (D) Andrew H. Longino (D)
J. C. W. Beckham (D)[42]
1901 William J. Samford (D)[37] Jeff Davis (D) William S. Jennings (D) Charles Brantley Aycock (D) Albert B. White (R)
William D. Jelks (D)[43][44]
1902 Andrew Jackson Montague (D)
1903 Joseph M. Terrell (D) James B. Frazier (D)[45] S. W. T. Lanham (D)
1904 Newton C. Blanchard (D) James K. Vardaman (D)
1905 Napoleon B. Broward (D) Robert Broadnax Glenn (D) John I. Cox (D)[46] William M. O. Dawson (R)
1906 Claude A. Swanson (D)
1907 B. B. Comer (D) (D) M. Hoke Smith (D) Charles N. Haskell (D) Malcolm R. Patterson (D) Thomas Mitchell Campbell (D)
1908 Augustus E. Willson (R) Jared Y. Sanders, Sr. (D) Edmond Noel (D)
1909 Albert W. Gilchrist (D) George Washington Donaghey (D) Joseph M. Brown (D) William Walton Kitchin (D) William E. Glasscock (R)
1910 William Hodges Mann (D)
1911 Emmet O'Neal (D) [47] Lee Cruce (D) Ben W. Hooper (R) Oscar Branch Colquitt (D)
1912 James B. McCreary (D) Luther E. Hall (D) Earl L. Brewer (D)
1913 (D)[48] Park Trammell (D) John M. Slaton (D) Locke Craig (D) Henry D. Hatfield (R)
1914 George Washington Hays (D)[49] Henry Carter Stuart (D)
1915 Charles Henderson (D) Nathaniel E. Harris (D) R. L. Williams (D) Tom C. Rye (D) James E. Ferguson (D)[50]
1916 Augustus O. Stanley (D)[51] Ruffin G. Pleasant (D) Theodore G. Bilbo (D)
1917 Charles Hillman Brough (D) Sidney Johnston Catts (P) Hugh M. Dorsey (D) Thomas Walter Bickett (D) William P. Hobby (D)[42] John J. Cornwell (D)
1918 Westmoreland Davis (D)
1919 Thomas Kilby (D) James D. Black (D)[36] James B. A. Robertson (D) A. H. Roberts (D)
1920 Edwin P. Morrow (R) John M. Parker (D) Lee M. Russell (D)
1921 Thomas Chipman McRae (D) Cary A. Hardee (D) Thomas W. Hardwick (D) Cameron Morrison (D) Alfred A. Taylor (R) Pat Morris Neff (D) Ephraim F. Morgan (R)
1922 Elbert Lee Trinkle (D)
1923 William W. Brandon (D) Clifford Walker (D) Jack C. Walton[52] Austin Peay (D)[53]
1924 William J. Fields (D) Henry L. Fuqua (D)[37] Henry L. Whitfield (D)[37] Martin E. Trapp (D)[36]
1925 Tom Jefferson Terral (D) John W. Martin (D) Angus Wilton McLean (D) Miriam A. Ferguson (D) Howard M. Gore (R)
1926 Oramel H. Simpson (D)[36] Harry F. Byrd (D)
1927 Bibb Graves (D) John Ellis Martineau (D)[54] Lamartine G. Hardman (D) Dennis Murphree (D)[36] Henry S. Johnston (D)[55] Dan Moody (D)
1928 Harvey Parnell (D)[42] Flem D. Sampson (R) Huey Long (D) Theodore G. Bilbo (D) Henry Hollis Horton (D)[56]
1929 Doyle E. Carlton (D) Oliver Max Gardner (D) William J. Holloway (D)[36] William G. Conley (R)
1930 John Garland Pollard (D)
1931 Benjamin M. Miller (D) Richard Russell, Jr. (D) William H. Murray (D) Ross S. Sterling (D)
1932 Ruby Laffoon (D) Alvin Olin King (D)[57] Martin Sennett Conner (D)
1933 Junius Marion Futrell (D) David Sholtz (D) Eugene Talmadge (D) Oscar K. Allen (D)[37] John C.B. Ehringhaus (D) Harry Hill McAlister (D) Miriam A. Ferguson (D) Herman G. Kump (D)
1934 George C. Peery (D)
1935 Bibb Graves (D) Ernest W. Marland (D) James V. Allred (D)
1936 Happy Chandler (D)[58] James A. Noe(D) Hugh L. White
1937 Carl Edward Bailey (D) Fred P. Cone (D) Eurith D. Rivers (D) Clyde R. Hoey (D) Gordon Browning (D) Homer A. Holt (D)
1938 James H. Price (D)
1939 Frank M. Dixon (D) Keen Johnson (D)[42] Leon C. Phillips (D) Prentice Cooper (D) W. Lee O'Daniel (D)[59]
1940 Sam H. Jones (D) Paul B. Johnson, Sr. (D)[37]
1941 Homer Martin Adkins (D) Spessard Holland (D) Eugene Talmadge (D) J. Melville Broughton (D) Matthew M. Neely (D)
1942 Coke R. Stevenson (D)[42] Colgate Darden (D)
1943 Chauncey Sparks (D) Ellis Arnall (D) Dennis Murphree (D)[36] Robert S. Kerr (D)
1944 Simeon S. Willis (R) Jimmie Davis (D) Thomas L. Bailey (D)[37]
1945 Benjamin Travis Laney (D) Millard F. Caldwell (D) R. Gregg Cherry (D) Jim Nance McCord (D) Clarence W. Meadows (D)
1946 Fielding L. Wright (D)[42] William M. Tuck (D)
1947 Jim Folsom (D) Melvin E. Thompson (D) Roy J. Turner (D) Beauford H. Jester (D)[60]
1948 Earle C. Clements (D)[51] Earl Long (D)
1949 Sid McMath (D) Fuller Warren (D) Herman Talmadge (D) W. Kerr Scott (D) Gordon Browning (D) Allan Shivers (D)[42] Okey L. Patteson (D)
1950 John S. Battle (D)
1951 Gordon Persons (D) Lawrence W. Wetherby (D)[42] Johnston Murray (D)
1952 Robert F. Kennon (D) Hugh L. White (D)
1953 Francis Cherry (D) Daniel T. McCarty (D)[37] William B. Umstead (D)[37] Frank G. Clement (D) William C. Marland (D)
1954 Charley Eugene Johns (D)[61] Luther Hodges (D)[42] Thomas Bahnson Stanley (D)
1955 Jim Folsom (D) Orval Faubus (D) LeRoy Collins (D) Marvin Griffin (D) Raymond D. Gary (D)
1956 Happy Chandler (D) Earl Long (D) James P. Coleman (D)
1957 Price Daniel (D) Cecil H. Underwood (R)
1958 James Lindsay Almond, Jr. (D)
1959 John Malcolm Patterson (D) Ernest Vandiver (D) J. Howard Edmondson (D) Buford Ellington (D)
1960 Bert T. Combs (D) Jimmie Davis (D) Ross Barnett (D)
1961 C. Farris Bryant (D) Terry Sanford (D) William Wallace Barron (D)
1962 Albertis S. Harrison, Jr. (D)
1963 George Wallace (D) Carl Sanders (D) Henry Bellmon (R) Frank G. Clement (D) John Connally (D)
1964 Edward T. Breathitt (D) John McKeithen (D) Paul B. Johnson, Jr. (D)
1965 W. Haydon Burns (D) Dan K. Moore Robert Evander McNair (D)[42] Hulett C. Smith (D)
1966 Mills E. Godwin, Jr. (D)
1967 Lurleen Wallace (D)[37] Winthrop Rockefeller (R) Claude R. Kirk, Jr. (R) Lester Maddox (D) Dewey F. Bartlett (R) Buford Ellington (D)
1968 Louie B. Nunn (R) John Bell Williams (D)
1969 Albert Brewer (D)[36] Robert W. Scott (D) Preston Smith (D) Arch A. Moore, Jr. (R)
1970 A. Linwood Holton, Jr. (R)
1971 George Wallace (D) Dale Bumpers (D) Reubin Askew (D) Jimmy Carter (D) David Hall (D) John C. West (D) Winfield Dunn (R)
1972 Wendell H. Ford (D)[51] Edwin Edwards (D) Bill Waller (D)
1973 James Holshouser (R) Dolph Briscoe (D)
1974 Mills E. Godwin, Jr. (R)
1975 David Pryor (D) George Busbee (D) Julian Carroll (D)[42] David L. Boren (D) James B. Edwards (R) Ray Blanton (D)
1976 Cliff Finch (D)
1977 James B. Hunt, Jr. (D) Jay Rockefeller (D)
1978 John N. Dalton (R)
1979 Fob James (D) Bill Clinton (D) Bob Graham (D) George Nigh (D) Richard Riley (D) Lamar Alexander (R) Bill Clements (R)
1980 John Y. Brown, Jr. (D) Dave Treen (R) William Winter (D)
1981 Frank D. White (R)
1982 Chuck Robb (D)
1983 George Wallace (D) Bill Clinton (D)[62] Joe Frank Harris (D) Mark White (D)
1984 Martha Layne Collins (D) Edwin Edwards (D) William Allain (D)
1985 James G. Martin (R) Arch A. Moore, Jr. (R)
1986 Gerald L. Baliles (D)
1987 H. Guy Hunt (R)[63] Bob Martinez (R) Henry Bellmon (R) Carroll A. Campbell, Jr. (R) Ned McWherter (D) Bill Clements (R)
1988 Wallace G. Wilkinson (D) Buddy Roemer (D/R)[64] Ray Mabus (D)
1989 Gaston Caperton (D)
1990 Douglas Wilder (D)
1991 Lawton Chiles (D) Zell Miller (D) David Walters (D) Ann Richards (D)
1992 Brereton Jones (D) Edwin Edwards (D) Kirk Fordice (R)
1993 Jim Folsom, Jr. (D)[36] Jim Guy Tucker (D)[42][65] James B. Hunt, Jr. (D)
1994 George Allen (R)
1995 Fob James (R) Frank Keating (R) David Beasley (R) Don Sundquist (R) George W. Bush (R)[66]
1996 Paul E. Patton (D) Murphy J. Foster, Jr. (R)
1997 Mike Huckabee (R)[42] Cecil H. Underwood (R)
1998 Jim Gilmore (R)
1999 Don Siegelman (D) Jeb Bush (R) Roy Barnes (D) Jim Hodges (D)
2000 Ronnie Musgrove (D)
2001 Mike Easley (D) Rick Perry (R)[42] Bob Wise (D)
2002 Mark Warner (D)
2003 Bob Riley (R) Sonny Perdue (R) Brad Henry (D) Mark Sanford (R) Phil Bredesen (D)
2004 Ernie Fletcher (R) Kathleen Blanco (D) Haley Barbour (R)
2005 Joe Manchin (D)[67]
2006 Tim Kaine (D)
2007 Mike Beebe (D) Charlie Crist (R/I)[68]
2008 Steve Beshear (D) Bobby Jindal (R)
2009 Beverly Perdue (D)
2010 Bob McDonnell (R)
2011 Robert Bentley (R) Rick Scott (R) Nathan Deal (R) Mary Fallin (R) Nikki Haley (R) Bill Haslam (R) Earl Ray Tomblin (D)[69]
2012 Phil Bryant (R)
2013 Pat McCrory (R)
2014 Terry McAuliffe (D)
2015 Asa Hutchinson (R) Greg Abbott (R)
2016 Matt Bevin (R) John Bel Edwards (D)
Year AlabamaArkansasFloridaGeorgiaKentuckyLouisianaMississippiNorth CarolinaOklahomaSouth CarolinaTennesseeTexasVirginiaWest Virginia

See also


  1. Dewey W. Grantham, The Life and Death of the Solid South: A Political History (1992).
  2. "Archives of Maryland Historical List: Constitutional Convention, 1864". November 1, 1864. Retrieved 2012-11-18.
  3. "Missouri abolishes slavery". January 11, 1865. Retrieved 2012-11-18.
  4. "Tennessee State Convention: Slavery Declared Forever Abolished". NY Times. January 14, 1865. Retrieved 2012-11-18.
  5. "On this day: 1865-FEB-03". Retrieved 2012-11-18.
  6. "Slavery in Delaware". Retrieved 2012-11-18.
  7. Lowell Hayes Harrison and James C. Klotter (1997). A new history of Kentucky. p. 180. In 1866, Kentucky refused to ratify the 13th Amendment. It did ratify it in 1976.
  8. George C. Rable, But There Was No Peace: The Role of Violence in the Politics of Reconstruction (1984), p. 132
  9. Gordon B. McKinney, Southern Mountain Republicans, 1865–1900: Politics and the Appalachian Community (1998)
  10. C. Van Woodward, The Origins of the New South, 1877–1913 (1951) pp 235–90
  11. 1 2 3 4 Richard M. Valelly, The Two Reconstructions: The Struggle for Black Enfranchisement University of Chicago Press, 2009, pp. 146–147
  12. Richard H. Pildes, "Democracy, Anti-Democracy, and the Canon", Constitutional Commentary, Vol.17, 2000, p.10, Accessed 10 Mar 2008
  13. Glenn Feldman, The Disenfranchisement Myth: Poor Whites and Suffrage Restriction in Alabama, Athens: University of Georgia Press, 2004, pp. 135–136
  14. Michael Perman.Struggle for Mastery: Disenfranchisement (sic) in the South, 1888–1908 (2001), Introduction
  15. Connie Rice: Top 10 Election Myths to Get Rid Of : NPR The situation in Louisiana was an example—see John N. Pharr, Regular Democratic Organization#Reconstruction & aftermath, and the note to Murphy J. Foster (who served as governor of Louisiana from 1892 to 1900).
  16. Jeffery A. Jenkins, Justin Peck, and Vesla M. Weaver. "Between Reconstructions: Congressional Action on Civil Rights, 1891–1940." Studies in American Political Development 24#1 (2010): 57–89. online
  17. Kari A. Frederickson, The Dixiecrat Revolt and the End of the Solid South, 1932–1968 (2001).
  18. Foner, Eric, Reconstruction: America's Unfinished Revolution, 1863–1877, Harper Collins, 2002, pg. 38
  19. Snell, Mark A., West Virginia and the Civil War. History Press, 2011, pg. 28
  20. Bastress, Robert M., The West Virginia State Constitution, Oxford Univ. Press, 2011, pg. 21
  21. Ambler, Charles Henry, A History of West Virginia, Prentice-Hall, 1937, pg. 376.
  22. Williams, John Alexander, West Virginia, a History, W.W. Norton, 1984, pg. 94
  23. Herbert, Hilary Abner Why the Solid South? Or, Reconstruction and Its Results, R.H. Woodward, 1890, pgs. 258–284
  24. Tumulty, Karen (26 October 2013). "A Blue State's Road to Red". The Washington Post. Retrieved 24 July 2016.
  25. Woodruff, Betsy (29 October 2014). "Goodbye West Virginia". Slate. Retrieved 24 July 2016.
  26. Dawson, Marion L.,Will the South Be Solid Again?, The North American Review, Volume 164, 1897, pgs. 193–198
  27. Too Close to Call: Presidential Electors and Elections in Maryland, featuring the Presidential Election of 1904. Archives of Maryland Documents for the Classroom.
  28. Second Thoughts: Reflections on the Great Society New Perspectives Quarterly, Winter 1987
  29. Rosenberg, Paul (December 8, 2015), "The South won the Civil War: White men, racial resentment, and how the Bitter Minority came to rule us all", Salon
  30. Farnswoth, Stephen and Hanna, Stephen (16 November 2012). "Why Virginia's purple is starting to look rather blue". Washington Post. Retrieved 24 July 2016.
  31. 1 2 3 Electoral votes awarded by the Electoral Commission
  32. Oklahoma was not a state until 1907 and did not vote in presidential elections until 1908
  33. Five of Alabama's electoral votes went to John F. Kennedy.
  34. One North Carolina Republican elector switched his vote to Wallace.
  35. Since both the Governor and Lieutenant Governor had been impeached, the former resigning and the latter being removed from office, Stone, as president of the Senate, was next in line for the governorship. Filled unexpired term and was later elected in his own right.
  36. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 As lieutenant governor, filled unexpired term.
  37. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Died in office.
  38. Resigned upon appointment as Assistant Secretary of the Treasury.
  39. Did not run for re-election in 1888, but due to the election's being disputed, remained in office until February 6, 1890.
  40. Elected in 1888 for a term beginning in 1891, an election dispute prevented Fleming from taking office until February 6, 1890
  41. William S. Taylor (R) was sworn in and assumed office, but the state legislature challenged the validity of his election, claiming ballot fraud. William Goebel (D), his challenger in the election, was shot on January 30, 1900. The next day, the legislature named Goebel governor. However, Goebel died from his wounds three days later.
  42. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 As lieutenant governor, acted as governor for unexpired term and was subsequently elected in his own right.
  43. As President of the state Senate, filled unexpired term and was subsequently elected in his own right.
  44. Gubernatorial terms were increased from two to four years during Jelks' governorship; his first term was filling out Samford's two-year term, and he was elected in 1902 for a four-year term.
  45. Resigned to take an elected seat in the United States Senate. Mar. 21, 1905
  46. As Speaker of the Senate, ascended to the governorship.
  47. The elected governor, Hoke Smith resigned to take his elected seat in the United States Senate. John M. Slaton, president of the senate, served as acting governor until Joseph M. Brown was elected governor in a special election.
  48. The elected Governor,Joseph Taylor Robinson, resigned on March 8, 1913 to take an elected seat in the United States Senate. President of the state Senate William Kavanaugh Oldham acted as governor for six days before a new Senate President was elected. Junius Marion Futrell, as the new president of the senate, acted as governor until a special election.
  49. Elected in a special election.
  50. Resigned on the initiation of impeachment proceedings. Aug. 25, 1917.
  51. 1 2 3 Resigned to take an elected seat in the United States Senate.
  52. Impeached and removed from office. Nov. 19, 1923
  53. Died in his third term of office. Oct. 2, 1927.
  54. Resigned to be a judge on the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas.
  55. Impeached and removed from office. Mar. 21, 1929
  56. As Speaker of the Senate, ascended to the governorship. Subsequently elected for two full terms.
  57. Paul N. Cyr was lieutenant governor under Huey Long and stated that he would succeed Long when Long left for the Senate, but Long demanded Cyr forfeit his office. King, as president of the state Senate, was elevated to lieutenant governor and later governor.
  58. Resigned to take an appointed seat in the United States Senate.
  59. Resigned upon victory in the Democratic primary for the United States Senate. Aug. 4, 1941.
  60. Died in office. Jul. 11, 1949
  61. As President of the state Senate, filled unexpired term.
  62. Resigned upon election to the Presidency of the United States.
  63. Removed from office upon being convicted of illegally using campaign and inaugural funds to pay personal debts; he was later pardoned by the state parole board based on innocence.
  64. Elected as a Democrat in 1987 but switched to Republican in 1991.
  65. Resigned after being convicted of mail fraud in the Whitewater scandal.
  66. Resigned upon election to the Presidency of the United States. Dec. 21, 2000
  67. Resigned to take an elected seat in the U.S. Senate. Nov. 15, 2010
  68. Elected as a Republican, Crist switched his registration to independent in April 2010.
  69. As president of the senate, served as acting governor until he won a special election in 2011.

Further reading

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