Coast To Coast, Primary Candidates From All Over Make Their Way To N.H.

Nov 26, 2019

Where are all of these presidential candidates coming from?

If you've lived through a presidential primary in New Hampshire, you've probably wondered this at one point or another. But we also wondered where all of the candidates for president have come from, literally — in other words, what states are most popular for modern New Hampshire presidential primary candidates?

New Hampshire is, perhaps unsurprisingly, one of the top producers of first-in-the-nation primary candidates — though none of them made it very far, in either their home state's primary or other political contests. But the Granite State actually trails behind California, New York and Florida in producing the most presidential primary candidates over the past three decades, according to state records.

(Related story: When it Comes to N.H. Primary, It Often Helps to Be Neighborly)

Using candidate lists produced by the New Hampshire Secretary of State, we mapped the states represented on the New Hampshire presidential primary ballot dating back to 1988. (We weren't able to find a source that consistently tracked the home states of all primary candidates prior to that election.)

For elections since 2012, we pulled these lists from the Secretary of State's website; for elections in 2008 and earlier, we used archived copies of the "red book," or Manual for the New Hampshire General Court, which tracks information about presidential primaries. 

Click through the tabs below to explore the overall geographic landscape of New Hampshire primary candidates and how it breaks down by party. If you hover over or click on an individual state, you can see more details about the candidates who hailed from that place and when they ran for president.

Keep in mind: These maps reflect the state a candidate claimed as their home at the time they were running for president, not necessarily where they were born or where they spent most of their political career. For example, while Marianne Williamson spent most of her recent career in California, she is listed as an Iowan in the 2020 race, because she moved to the first-in-the-nation caucus state earlier this year, so that's her address on record with the New Hampshire Secretary of State's office. Similarly, President Donald Trump appears as both a New Yorker and a Floridian — because he claimed New York as his home when filing for the 2016 primary, but later claimed Florida as his home for 2020.

If you don't see the map below, or are having trouble exploring it on your device, try this link to view it in a new window.