Name That Electoral Map

Slate has a fun quiz out today for political geeks:

Today, Slate challenges its readers to demonstrate their grasp of presidential election history. Check out the 12 electoral maps randomly generated from presidential elections since 1860. States are shaded according to the party of the candidate who won them: red for Republicans, blue for Democrats, and green for third parties or even splits. For each map, pick the proper election out of four choices before the timer runs out. Every correct answer is worth 45 electoral votes. Collect 270 to come out on top.

I went 12 for 12 and got 540 “Electoral Votes”

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Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. OzarkHillbilly says:

    I went 12 for 12 and got 540 “Electoral Votes”

    12 for 12? Doug, you need to find something other than politics to spend your time on. I doubt I could get even 1 right.

  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Ok, I got seven right…. But there was only one where I wasn’t just plain guessing. The rest of them I didn’t have a clue.

  3. Tsar Nicholas says:

    It is amazing to go back over prior election cycles, even those from the relatively recent past.

    Not that long ago California and New York were solid Republican strongholds, the South was Democrat to the core and a Republican couldn’t have won Texas literally running unopposed. Shit, as recently as the late-1980’s the notion of a Democrat presidential nominee winning California was ludicrous and if you said that Republicans soon would hold every statewide office in Texas they would have sent you off to Bellevue for shock therapy.

    My how things change, especially as they pretty much stay the same.

  4. Scott says:

    I got about 10 out of 12 right primarily using knowing when states became states (e.g Oklahoma didn’t become a state until 1907, and Hawaii and Alaska until 1960 and 1959), a little basic history, and process of elimination.

  5. Franklin says:

    @Tsar Nicholas:

    My how things change, especially as they pretty much stay the same.

    I assume you’re referring to the stability of the Democrat/Republican divide. I think it’s because they’re constantly adjusting to compete with each other. If one side has clearly won a particular issue, it is eventually picked up by the other side to negate the advantage.

  6. mantis says:

    I got 9 of 12, which was better than I expected. My knowledge of 19th century elections is a bit lacking…

  7. Franklin says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Those were exactly my results as well, including the amount of guessing.

  8. gimmeabreak says:

    I got a 360 – didn’t notice how many I missed. I’ll take it. I’m a proud political nerd. I

  9. Ben says:

    I went 10 for 12, for a score of 450 and a rank of “Eisenhower”. I knew most of them pretty certainly, had to guess on about 4 or 5, but even for those I was able to narrow it down to a 50/50 shot. Fun quiz.

  10. Bill says:

    I scored 405. A key to good scoring- Hawaii and Alaska. You can usually eliminate 2 out of 4 choices based on whether those states outcomes aka whether they had a vote or not.

  11. Curtis says:

    I got 10 of 12 as well, and one of the misses was the wrong FDR re-election. So I am pretty happy with that. Which states were in the Union were a good clue, and then whether the south was red or blue was the other.