Gary Johnson Vote Effect on Libertarian Party Ballot Access (2016)
Gary Johnson was the Libertarian Party presidential nominee in 2016. He was on the ballot in all fifty states plus D. C., but was only listed as a Libertarian on the ballot in forty-seven of those states plus D. C. Nationwide, he received approximately 3.24% of the vote. He received between 1.19% and 9.34% in each of the fifty states plus D. C.
Because presidential candidate election results affect ballot access, Johnson's run was able to secure ballot access for the Libertarian Party for at least one election cycle in twenty-two states. In eighteen of those states, Libertarian Party ballot access is secured for all offices. In two of those states, Johnson only secured ballot access for the 2020 Libertarian Party presidential nominee. In Georgia, Johnson only secured ballot access in 2018 to Libertarian candidates running for statewide offices, while in Pennsylvania, Johnson was only able to secure Libertarian Party ballot access in special elections in 2017 and 2018.
|Johnson met the threshold, and ballot access qualification or retention applies to all offices|
|Johnson met the threshold, but ballot access qualification or retention does not apply to all offices|
|Johnson met the threshold, but was listed on the ballot as an independent, meaning no benefit is accrued to the Libertarian Party|
|Johnson did not meet the threshold, or there was no threshold to meet|
|State||Percent needed||Percent attained||How long status lasts||Application to all offices?|
|Alaska||3%||5.75%||2020, but not 2018||no, only president in 2020|
|Arizona||5%||3.83%||2018 and 2020||yes|
|Colorado||1%||5.06%||2018 and 2020||yes|
|Connecticut||1%||3.02%||2020, but not 2018||no, only president in 2020|
|D. C.||7,500 votes||4,501 votes||2018||yes|
|Georgia||approximately 1.5%||3.07%||2018||no, only statewide offices|
|20% nationwide||3.24% nationwide||2018 and 2020||yes|
|Illinois||5%||3.78%||2018||no, only statewide offices|
|Kentucky||2%||2.79%||2018, 2019, 2020||yes|
|Louisiana||5%||1.88%||2018, 2019, 2020||yes|
|Michigan||16,490 votes||172,726 votes||2018||yes|
|Minnesota||5%||3.85%||2018 and 2020||yes|
|Missouri||2%||3.47%||2018 and 2020||yes|
|Montana||12,529 votes||27,263 votes||2018 and 2020||yes|
|Nebraska||5%||4.67%||2018 and 2020||yes|
|North Carolina||2%||2.72%||2018 and 2020||yes|
|Ohio||3%||3.18%||2018 and 2020||yes|
|Oregon||1%||4.63%||2018 and 2020||yes|
|Pennsylvania||approximately 1%||2.39%||2017 and 2018||only special elections|
|Rhode Island||5%||3.20%||2018 and 2020||yes|
|Utah||2%||3.22%||2018 and 2020||yes|
|Virginia||10%||3.00%||2017 and 2018||yes|
|Washington||5%||4.20%||2018 and 2020||yes|
Johnson was listed as an independent on the ballots of Alabama, Ohio, and Tennessee, meaning his vote total could not have any effect on Libertarian Party ballot access in those states.
While the vote tests of most states that have ballot access vote tests apply to all statewide offices, Kentucky and Washington only use presidential votes in their vote tests. Johnson succeeded in retaining ballot access in Kentucky, but not in Washington.
- 2016 Presidential General Election Results, Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections, cited 10 November 2016. For state-by-state results, click on the state in question. Note: at this time, the popular vote counts listed here are unofficial, and the electoral vote counts are projected. The site lists its sources here.
- "2016 Presidential Vote Effect on Party Qualification or Retention," Ballot Access News 32, no. 3 (1 August 2016).
- Brian Doherty, "How Gary Johnson's Vote Percentages Will Affect Libertarian Party Ballot Access, State By State," Hit & Run Blog, (reason.com, 3 November 2016, with corrections).
- Ballot access requirements for political parties in Michigan, ballotpedia.org (cited 11 November 2016). Ruth Johnson received 1,649,047 votes for Secretary of State of Michigan in 2014 according to Wikipedia (cited 11 November 2016).
- Ballot access requirements for political parties in Montana, ballotpedia.org (cited 11 November 2016). Steve Bullock received 250,571 votes for Govenor of Montana in 2016 according to Wikipedia (cited 11 November 2016).