Talk:2012 U.S. presidential election

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This United States politics related article has been awarded BRONZE status for quality. It's getting there, but could be better with improvement. See RationalWiki:Article rating for more information.

Editorial notes

Surely the last one was only ten minutes ago! Scarlet A.pngbomination 23:21, 13 September 2010 (UTC)

That's what it feels like! But apparently it's been two years. Tetronian you're clueless 23:22, 13 September 2010 (UTC)
We almost made it halfway between the two! Tyrannis (talk) 23:24, 13 September 2010 (UTC)
Sorry, I was just curious as to who would be inflicted upon as as the world's most powerful (wo)man, should the Republicans win. Dalek (talk) 23:28, 13 September 2010 (UTC)
Meh. No problem. TOW has had their's up since the last election. Conservapedia probably has one already. Tyrannis (talk) 23:29, 13 September 2010 (UTC)
Conservapedia's been up since June 2009. [1] I guess I could just see which Conservapedia thinks is the best option, and consider it the worst. Dalek (talk) 23:32, 13 September 2010 (UTC)

I think at this point this should just be a forum discussion. Any objections to my moving it there, before I do? ħumanUser talk:Human 02:47, 14 September 2010 (UTC)

I'd be in favour of that, since it'd let people throw everything out there... and we can beat it into an article by, say, 2011.Dalek (talk) 02:54, 14 September 2010 (UTC)
Yeah, it is a little to early now for this page to exist in the mainspace, now that I think about it. --Onion Hi! :) 02:56, 14 September 2010 (UTC)
No harm, no foul. I see if simply moving it works to put it into the forum space. I suspect I'll have to add some header to it. ħumanUser talk:Human 03:40, 14 September 2010 (UTC)
That wasn't as easy as I'd like, but it worked. ħumanUser talk:Human 03:45, 14 September 2010 (UTC)

This is beginning to look much more like a real article to me. Do we have one on the 2008 election to match the title to if we move it back into the mainspace? ħumanUser talk:Human 21:53, 18 September 2010 (UTC)

Yes, it's at 2008 U.S. Presidential Election --Onion Hi! :) 21:59, 18 September 2010 (UTC)
OK, I moved it back. Hmmm, the "forum" header appears to have automagically disappeared. Weird. Should we add a section (or more) on the major issues yet? ħumanUser talk:Human 22:50, 18 September 2010 (UTC)

State wide[edit]

I'm tabultaing which GOP guy wins in each statesmost recent polls. Will done soon. Where do you want it in the article? Tyrannis (talk) 14:18, 20 September 2010 (UTC)

We might want to tag that section with when it was last updated? ħumanUser talk:Human 00:37, 3 October 2010 (UTC)


Is it worth adding Hillary Clinton as a possible Democratic candidate? There's vague rumors, but it's most right-wingers salivating at the thought of a sitting Democratic President having to fight for his own party's nomination. MDB (talk) 18:04, 14 September 2010 (UTC)

going by their 2008 battle, It'd be fun to watch. Totnesmartin (talk) 18:23, 14 September 2010 (UTC)
Not going to happen, unless things change drastically for the worse in a year and a half, or unless there's some serious shit going on behind the scenes we don't know about. DickTurpis (talk) 18:26, 14 September 2010 (UTC)
Absolutely zero chance.--ADtalkModerator 06:34, 15 September 2010 (UTC)
She'll besevenentyish I think. But she is an obvious choice. ħumanUser talk:Human 06:54, 15 September 2010 (UTC)
She'll be 65 on election day, that wouldn't be unprecedented, although recently elected Presidents have been rather young. Still, I don't see her challenging a sitting President either, especially since she's part of his administration. By hanging on and maybe switching posts with Biden, she can put herself in an excellent position for 2016 no matter whether Obama wins or not, so that's a much safer bet. Röstigraben (talk) 08:11, 15 September 2010 (UTC)
Oh, that's right, I was "remembering" figuring out that she'd be 69 in 2016, when she might have a viable run. ħumanUser talk:Human 21:44, 18 September 2010 (UTC)


I's too bad this isn't a "Fun" page, because I'd add "is the Devil" to Gingrich's section.

But on the other paw, is that an advantage or a disadvantage? MDB (talk) 19:18, 14 September 2010 (UTC)

Rick Perry[edit]

Why would he be running to be the leader of a country that he doesn't even want to be a part of? --Onion Hi! :) 19:58, 18 September 2010 (UTC)


Shouldn't we say how old they will be in Nov 2012? Current ages aren't very informative, and of course will change twice (at least) by then. Perhaps, say "born 1960, will be 52"? ħumanUser talk:Human 21:48, 18 September 2010 (UTC)

Oh, I see, we are using the "age" template. I added "will be" instances of it to a couple people. Anyone excited enough to pitch in on some of the others? Bueller? RA? ħumanUser talk:Human 00:52, 3 October 2010 (UTC)

Primary polls[edit]

"Currently gay activist Fred Karger is the only candidate running for the Republican nomination, ... Many of the candidates below are going to run once the election cycle actually starts (i.e., after the 2010 midterm elections, at the very soonest)." As a Brit who understandeth not this primary stuff, are Gingrich, Huckabee et al actually running or not? 02:17, 3 October 2010 (UTC) SusanG Toast

They aren't "running" until they formally declare and register with the Federal Elections Commission, at which point they can form their committee and raise money, etc. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:23, 3 October 2010 (UTC)
So what are these Primary Polls about?Th unsure.gif How come there's voting for someone who isn't running and might not run? It's all very strange. 02:36, 3 October 2010 (UTC) SusanG Toast
It's not voting, it's polling. The pollsters are calling "likely Republican voters" and asking who they prefer and reporting the results. I do recall that in UK, "polls" refer to real voting. Here they mostly mean idiots interrupting work or play with silly questions on t' telephone. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:42, 3 October 2010 (UTC)
Aah, I get you! Thanx. 02:43, 3 October 2010 (UTC) SusanG Toast

People who aren't running[edit]

Should they be put in a separate page, baleeted, left where they are, what? ТyTalk. 20:34, 22 February 2011 (UTC)

Your solution is fine. Wikipedia also keeps sections about rumoured candidates who never got out of the gate, it's good for having an account of the whole field as it was perceived at one point. Röstigraben (talk) 20:39, 22 February 2011 (UTC)
Alright then. ТyTalk. 20:40, 22 February 2011 (UTC)


So should we have joke candidates in or not? Chthulu is always funny, but Human reverted a joke I made about Jesus, who gets a fair number of write in votes every year. So should all non-human deity/figments of imagination go? ATP (talk) 21:51, 5 April 2011 (UTC)

Going to be an awfully long article if we start adding Jesus or Stewie Griffin or whoever. Perhaps we could fork them onto a fun page if it gets unwieldy. Totnesmartin (talk) 09:19, 6 April 2011 (UTC)


I don't understand all the dense wiki-fu used to make up these tables. Could someone who does maybe move Santorum to "Confirmed Running" and Huckabee to "Looked like they were going to, but declined"?--ADtalkModerator 01:26, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Can you give me a cite for each please? But yeah I'll get on it. ТyTalk. 01:27, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Huckabee won't run.
Santorum in first debate, which was only for declared candidates.--ADtalkModerator 01:57, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Thank you. ТyTalk. 01:57, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
That was fast! Wish I knew wikitables so well.--ADtalkModerator 02:00, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I don't. I just notice patterns. ТyTalk. 02:01, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Mitch Daniels isn't running.--ADtalkModerator 11:00, 22 May 2011 (UTC)

I'm new to this page, but I think I did what you suggested? --Sid (talk) 11:25, 22 May 2011 (UTC)
Thanks, perfect!--ADtalkModerator 11:38, 22 May 2011 (UTC)

Randall Terry[edit]

Randall Terry did not announce he would be challenging President Obama in thevDemocratic prmaries? nobsdon't bother me 03:33, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Not particularly notable, but anyways, can you give me a citation Rob? ТyTalk. 03:35, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Would CNN be an acceptable source? [2] nobsdon't bother me 03:37, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Yes that works quite well. ТyTalk. 03:41, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Write it better. ħumanUser talk:Human 03:58, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I'll try. ТyTalk. 03:59, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Not very polite! I will help though.--ADtalkModerator 04:01, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
This reminds me of a joke: How many Ratwikians does it take to update a half sentence about the ongoings in the Democratic party that made news 5 months ago? nobsdon't bother me 04:08, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Four so far. - π 04:09, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for not hating on me friends. Yes, let us write it better. PS, I really do mean "thanks". It's been a couple days now since anyone told me to fuck off here, and it makes me feel so much more welcome than six months ago. I appreciate the effort. ħumanUser talk:Human 04:12, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
The new version id much better. Sorry if I used a heavy-handed method along the way. I appreciate everyone except the insane one's work on this. ħumanUser talk:Human 04:17, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

non notable?[edit]

If Randall Terry is non-notable, why does he have his own Rationalwiki bio? Maybe it should deleted. nobsdon't bother me 04:13, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

He is non-notable as a candidate. He is hilarious and on-mission as an RW article. Do you understand the difference, Rob? PS, I am still 403'd at CP, and I even sent you my IP address. Still waiting... ħumanUser talk:Human 04:17, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
You have a RationalWiki bio and I can honesty tell you nobody but people on this website give a fuck about you, sorry it is harsh but true. - π 04:14, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I should be thanked. This page looked like crap til I fixed it. Then it took a committee of four to rubber-stamp the work I did. nobsdon't bother me 04:24, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Thank you for your contributions.--ADtalkModerator 04:34, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Whatever would we do without you, Rob? Röstigraben (talk) 06:48, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Romney's wealth[edit]

The Romney entry refers to his personal "billions". Most estimates I've seen have a maximum for his wealth as $250 million. MDB (talk) 18:16, 15 August 2011 (UTC)

You're right. He recently had to hand in some information about his personal wealth, IIRC it was somewhere in the 150 million range. Röstigraben (talk) 18:30, 15 August 2011 (UTC)


Too bad we can't have a more realistic ranking system - I mean, Gingrich is essentially done, for example. There are three tiers of candidates: real ones (Romney, Bachmann, Perry, Huntsman, Paul), peddlers just looking to amass influence and sell their endorsement (Gingrich, Santorum, Palin), and guys just there for a cause (everyone else).--ADtalkModerator 07:25, 18 August 2011 (UTC)

I'm fine with that, as long as we avoid Andy's mistake and set up an objective standard for ranking candidates. We could reorder them into groups: a "top contenders" tier with, say, the three candidates who lead in nationwide polling, a "minor candidates" group, and one with "also-rans" containing everyone who's below 25% name recognition. That could be done rather easily, and updates wouldn't be an issue either, since the polling data is already there. Röstigraben (talk) 08:34, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
Unfortunately it'd just be a judgment call - no way to do it objectively. Gingrich still polls like a "real" candidate and Santorum polls like a third-tier guy for a cause. I'm not saying I want to change the article, because I can't think of any fair way to do it (McCain polled very badly this early in the race in 2008). I was just noting that it's funny that we have people like Perry, Gingrich, and McCotter all in this same category.--ADtalkModerator 08:52, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
Well, there's no way to include intangibles without drifting into punditry, and that would be problematic because different editors would probably disagree about the ranking. But the numbers we've got would already be enough to cull all the long-shots like McCotter, Roemer and Karger from the main list. Most people don't even know they're running, and they lack the resources to change anything about that. Then we could just let the field of "serious" candidates sort itself out as they quit the race one by one. Röstigraben (talk) 09:11, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
There's a weird thing that happens in the media in that regard. I mean, take Ron Paul, for example. Even though he has an amazing organization and absolutely devoted followers who contribute to his substantial fundraising (considering his profile) he is not considered a "serious" candidate - Fox News' coverage has strongly implied that there are only three major serious candidates right now (Perry, Romney, Bachmann). Why not include Ron Paul, since he just won a major straw poll and polls pretty well? Well, someone somewhere engaged in the punditry that says that he doesn't stand a chance in the real contest.
To some extent that's correct: polling also indicates that Paul has a sort of ceiling to his efforts, where he has difficulty penetrating past a very specific demographic. He's tried to expand this by emphasizing his social conservatism but he's unwilling to dampen his extremism on a lot of things so he suffers outside that very small sector. But even though he's never going to actually win, he might win a state or two and push his agenda forward (fuck Bachmann: Paul is the only tip of the spear around here). Which kind of makes him a cross between the first-rank and third, since in the end he's just going to be trying to slide the overton window towards the libertarian side.
I don't know... I think, on balance, that ranking wouldn't really work. It's way too early now, for one. Traditionally, polls at this stage are not predictive of actual victory - you can poll very badly this early and still win the primary - and even though they are predictive of continued candidacy (if you poll too badly no one may donate) that can be overcome by appealing to special interests or really dedicated campaigning. National polls are particularly worthless.
Maybe this is a project to undertake in a few months, when it's more sorted out. The second tier will be looking to peak and then sell their endorsement early on, and then the first and third tier are easily sorted with a polling ceiling. And once September passes or the like, the almost-rans like Palin will have decided they can't get any more glory by letting people beg them to run. What do you think, Rosti?--ADtalkModerator 09:28, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
I'm not proposing that we rank all the candidates by their polling numbers; as you said, that would be way too early, since most eventual voters haven't even tuned in to the primaries. But there is a group of candidates - almost half of our "confirmed running" list, actually - who dont have any chance at all, no matter what happens. None of them are included in surveys or allowed to participate in debates. I'd say we put them into a special section and continue with a shortlist of viable candidates. Based on polling and debate participation, that would be Romney, Bachmann, Perry, Paul, Cain, Gingrich, Santorum and Huntsman. My guess is that some of them, especially Newt, won't even survive until the winter, naturally reducing the list. There may be some new entrants to replace them, although I don't expect any major further additions to the field. When the actual voting is about to kick off, we could start ordering the remaining candidates based on robust data like intensive polling and fundraising. Paul, by the way, would do very well according to these metrics and closely trail Bachmann for 3rd place. He's still a long shot, but I agree that the media are a little rash in downplaying his candidacy, which is very viable according to the fundamentals. Röstigraben (talk) 09:49, 18 August 2011 (UTC)
That's a good plan! Maybe "Viable" and "Long-shot?" Let's do this next month, when we will be able to safely rule out those who haven't declared and eliminate the "may run" category (filing deadlines for SC aren't until May, but even Perry is at this point rushing to make up lost time).--ADtalkModerator 10:02, 18 August 2011 (UTC)

Field is narrowing[edit]

Essentially the race is Perry vs. Romney at this point, with Bachmann's campaign manager quitting as her funding and polling evaporates. Palin is definitely not going to get in the race, and the other candidates either squandered their chance or never had one. The upcoming GOP debate will really cement this in place - if Perry doesn't screw up, then he's locked himself in as one of the men in a two-man race. If he does screw up, he might have left some light in the race for someone else, but even then it's iffy. At this point, he's sucking up all the extremist and Tea Party support. Interesting stuff!--ADtalkModerator 10:38, 6 September 2011 (UTC)

Reply to myself: Perry screwed up!--ADtalkModerator 08:11, 30 November 2011 (UTC)

Joke Candidates[edit]

I'm stopping myself from putting in Robot Nixon right now. Should we keep it as it is? Osaka Sun (talk) 05:13, 27 September 2011 (UTC)

Yeah, the joke in joke candidates is already running pretty dry. Let's not push it. DickTurpis (talk) 05:18, 27 September 2011 (UTC)
You mean Richard Nixon's head? Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 05:37, 27 September 2011 (UTC)
What did you think? :P Osaka Sun (talk) 07:52, 27 September 2011 (UTC)

"can use tag line "Obama, you're Fired"."[edit]

Hahahhaa. Laughed loudly and colleagues looked at me strangely as there is nothing amusing about the work I am doing. Aceace 22:42, 5 October 2011 (UTC)


I've stripped Romney's label as frontrunner. There's no clear frontrunner at this point between Gingrich or Romney. The latter has an advantage in his well-built campaign, but Gingrich is up by almost double digits in both early primary states, and with Cain's support dropping (he's considered dropping out) most of that is going to go to Gingrich. With only a month left, it looks like Gingrich will be the Not Romney.--ADtalkModerator 08:09, 30 November 2011 (UTC)

Ron Paul[edit]

When can we move him to the "No fucking chance" section? He's won no states, the media is ignoring him and he hasn't even gone to some of the debates. -- Seth Peck (talk) 18:22, 14 March 2012 (UTC)

He's banking on the brokered convention or something. Тyrannis 18:39, 14 March 2012 (UTC)
There's still time for him to run as an independent, right? Osaka Sun (talk) 19:11, 14 March 2012 (UTC)
He won't. His son's future would be badly damaged.
I don't think he should be moved. There's only four candidates, and Ron Paul is getting delegates and has come in the 40% or so range in some states. Newt has just as poor a chance as Paul, so if you move one you'd have to move both.--ADtalkModerator 19:53, 14 March 2012 (UTC)

Palpatine's lack of entering the race[edit]

Should we add emperor palpatine's to the list of people that Looked like they were going to, but declined

here's the reference174.93.171.250 (talk) 03:02, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

There are already three fake-candidates on the page, and for a pretty lame joke it becomes even less funny each time it is repeated.--ADtalkModerator 03:47, 20 March 2012 (UTC)
Up to a point...then it becomes funny again, sometimes even funnier than the initial joke...then it can turn into a meme, then ::squirrel!:: cliche. 03:56, 20 March 2012 (UTC) C®ackeЯ

Contradictions about popularity[edit]

I've found two contradictory statements about the popularity of Obama and Romney [3]. Shall we do an article about unscientific polling? I'm not Jesus (talk) 14:11, 18 May 2012 (UTC)

It'd be better to have a talk page thread about people adding the latest things to the article without reading the rest of it first. Sophiebecause liberals 16:18, 18 May 2012 (UTC)

Secret Squirrel[edit]

Quit calling me an "Obama fanboy", and quit reverting my edits without a real reason. My version still includes the views; your version, however, explicitly supports them. If I was inserting my views, it would say "claims that Obama is waging a war on civil liberties and failed health care reform are false". But I did not. I merely changed two words to more neutral statements that clearly set them as the view of some individuals and not everybody.

Ironically, your changes were the ones that inserted a specific POV, not mine. I stated in an edit description why the "HCR failure" statement is an opinion not a fact. In the area of civil liberties, it is more murky as he has made both advancements and retreats in that area, and whether he is "assaulting" civil liberties (in general a vague area) depends on prioritizing of certain issues and defining intent. Mr. Anon (talk) 02:25, 19 May 2012 (UTC)

Quit trying to tone down criticism of Obama's record. He is as bad as Bush on foreign policy and worse than Bush on civil liberties, and only marginally better on some other things. Secret Squirrel (talk) 02:30, 19 May 2012 (UTC)
That is an opinion. All I have done is set those aside as such. I have not, contrary to your claims, turned this article into simply praising Obama. The criticism of him is still there, but it is made more clear who the criticism is coming from. Mr. Anon (talk) 02:32, 19 May 2012 (UTC)
I also love how you still haven't given a specific reason why you reverted my edits. You resort to strawmans and refuse to specifically address my edits. I'm not saying anything about Obama's foreign policy/civil liberties record. I'm not saying anything about what good health reform should be. I'm just saying that these are opinions, not clear stances. Obama hasn't said "I'm going after civil liberties". Obama has just made a couple of foreign policy decisions, and it is people like us that interpret them as being good or bad on civil liberties. Mr. Anon (talk) 02:36, 19 May 2012 (UTC)
Since arriving here you have frequently added attacks on people like Glenn Greenwald and Ralph Nader and toned down anything critical of Obama. The Obama administration revived the government's prosecution of Thomas Drake after the Bush administration dropped it. Obama personally campaigned for the extension of the Patriot Act. The no-fly list is now over twice as large as it was when Bush left office. When Bush left office there were no full body scanners in airports, now there are. Bradley Manning is sitting in jail and Julian Assange is still facing prosecution. Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for no legitimate reason, just a few days after escalating the Afghanistan war. This is just the tip of the iceberg with this creep. I'm going to stand by my view that the last if not the only decent Democrats to ever win the preisdential nomination were McGovern, Carter, and Dukakis; the only real progressive choice in 1996 and 2000 was Ralph Nader; Ron Paul - although I do not by any means support him - is a legitimate protest vote in the current environment - and Obama should be sharing a cell with Bush and Cheney.
Your continued removal of criticism of Obama and adding more attacks on Greenwald, Nader, Paul etc is no longer going to be tolerated. You are from now on a revert on sight editor. Secret Squirrel (talk) 02:55, 19 May 2012 (UTC)
None of this is relevant. This isn't a debate on Obama's record. This is a debate over literally two words that I changed in the article to clarify passages. The viewpoints are still there.
I'm willing to make concessions on my Greenwald edits, as I made those edits months ago. The only criticism of Nader I added was his apparent support of Ron Paul (indeed, in his Time article about the man he was very favorable towards him). I never attacked Nader on his 2000 election results - the only opinions I expressed on that were on the talk page. Mr. Anon (talk) 03:01, 19 May 2012 (UTC)
Okay, then let's clean up the Glenn Greenwald article, because right now it is in a very sorry state. Secret Squirrel (talk) 03:04, 19 May 2012 (UTC)
I've restored it to what it was before I made my edits. Mr. Anon (talk) 03:39, 19 May 2012 (UTC)
As a clarification, ListenerX's version is perfectly fine (as I have always stated, I am not good at snark). Other versions that I would have been fine with are statements like "people on the left are discontent with Obama because of his killing of Anwar Al-Awlaki, a US citizen, his prosectution of whistleblowers like Thomas Drake, and extension of the Patriot Act". This highlights specific issues, and is overall neutral (it is a fact that some people are discontent with him for that). Mr. Anon (talk) 03:59, 19 May 2012 (UTC)

Gary Johnson[edit]

Polls 9% in Arizona. He might very will be a spoiler, helping Obama win southern states like Texas and Arizona. Already I see him as alone having the potential of getting over 5% of the general election popular vote, which will be historically significant. Backed by Ron Paul, I could see him getting as much as 15%, and if he does as well in the polls beforehand we might see him in the debates, which will be fun. A lot of ifs and mights here, but he is a formidable third party candidate, so we might as well have an article on him. Mr. Anon (talk) 01:31, 30 May 2012 (UTC)

But I thought Ron Paulism was supposed to be a plague to be opposed at all costs? Maybe not if it takes votes away from Romney and helps Mr. Hopey Changey get re-elected, eh? Secret Squirrel (talk) 00:11, 3 June 2012 (UTC)
Paul is a racist, misogynist antisemite who denies climate change and is a defender of civil liberties by proposing private mercenaries funded by the government take down Al-Qaida. Gary Johnson, while bad on economic issues, knows what he is talking about for a change, acknowledges science, and is not completely anti-women. The latter I respect as a legitimate third party candidate (but not a valid vote for progressives) while the former is just in there to "send a message" deeply rooted in conspiracy. My deep, arguably personal, hatred of Paul is mainly due to his defenders claiming he is a candidate that he is not. Anyone who thinks he's in any way progressive is wrong. I have not heard people claim the same about Gary Johnson; he is running for the libertarian party after all. Mr. Anon (talk) 01:43, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

Might be an idea to update this article properly?[edit]

I see we're all doing our fun discussion of last night's results over on CP:Talk. Maybe we'd be better moving general discussion here? DogP (talk) 01:00, 8 November 2012 (UTC)

there was a whole subpage on election night. Somebody keeps shunting it to RW space though. SophieWilder 10:11, 8 November 2012 (UTC)