11

In the Wikipedia article for the results of the 2016 US Presidential Election, it shows 1 red vote in Maine:

Cropped screenshot of election results

Also, the "States carried" says "ME-02". What does that mean? I thought winning a state meant the winner gets to select the electors for that state.

3
  • 2
    Maine and one other state I can't remember (probably NE) divide their electoral votes based on Senate districting (I believe). Google around for more.
    – user2565
    Nov 21 '16 at 19:29
  • 3
    @barrycarter It is Nebraska and it's congressional districts. Senators are state-wide. Nov 22 '16 at 17:17
  • Note that if all the states had done this President-Elect Trump would have won by a wider margin. Nov 23 '16 at 22:55
25

Maine and Nebraska award their electoral college votes to the winners of each congressional district. That's two votes to the statewide winner (Senate seats are statewide and there are two per state). And one vote for each House district.

ME-01 means the first congressional (House) district of Maine. The voters there voted for Hillary Clinton. ME-02 is the second congressional district of Maine. Those voters voted for Donald Trump. Overall, Maine voted for Clinton, so she received three votes, one for ME-01 and two for the state. By convention, they only mention explicitly the vote that does not align with the statewide vote.

In 2008, the same thing happened with NE-02 which is the Nebraskan district for Omaha. Barack Obama won the urban district but lost the other two.

ME and NE are the postal codes for Maine and Nebraska respectively. They just happen to be similar. Using the postal codes with two digits is a common way to represent congressional districts. If you see something like WY-AL, that means that the state (e.g. Wyoming) has just one at-large congressional district.

1
  • Note that if the other states had done it this way, President-Elect Trump would have won by a wider margin. Nov 23 '16 at 23:00
15

Maine and Nebraska use the appropriately named Maine-Nebraska System, rather than the winner-take-all method of other states. In Maine and Nebraska, each congressional district has its own electoral vote. So it's possible for each congressional district to vote a different way.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .