Political Elections

The Elections channel includes information on topics related to elections, voting or running for political office. Learn more about presidential debates, the electoral college or the voting system.


A handful of write-in candidates have been elected to both the U.S. House and Senate, but it's a difficult way to win office.

Sometimes elections are just too close to call. That's when voters have to head back to the polls for a runoff.

Guess which president liked to skinny dip and which one liked petroleum jelly rubbed all over his head every morning.

Are there alternatives to the winner-take-all voting system? Ranked-choice voting is one, which supporters say would elect more centrist candidates. But critics worry about the downsides.

As Wisconsin starts retabulating its presidential ballots, we wonder whether a hand count is really more accurate.

Apparently, not just kids can be influenced by a sticker — it works for adults too.

The latest episode of our Stuff They Don't Want You to Know podcast examines the fringe ideas around the 2016 Republican nominee.

Think the Trump/Clinton presidential campaign is the strangest? It'll seem par for the course when you see what crazy things have happened in previous elections.

Splits with the European Union have happened before, but that doesn't mean the U.K.'s Brexit will be easy, or even have much in common with past instances.

Whether it's poll taxes, literacy tests, ID laws or limited polling hours, the U.S. has a long-running history of coming up with ways to restrict citizens' voting rights.

We buy airline tickets, transfer money and look for dates online. Why can't we vote?

A controversial recent study argues that the order of Google search results could determine an election's outcome. Could that really happen?

It might seem undemocratic to have an Electoral College in the U.S., but the Founding Fathers had some concerns about government "by the people."

Decades ago, two political scientists predicted Americans would ultimately move away from establishment, two-party politics. Were they right, and what makes voters go independent in the first place?

It took just about as much time for the ink to dry on the Declaration of Independence as it did for American politics to become another type of family business. What are 10 of the most successful political dynasties?

Come convention time, you’ll see attendees sporting head-to-toe political regalia. What’s the history of these tiny statement-makers, and which campaign tchotchkes make plain old buttons look dull?

We always hear about major government figures like the Secretary of State and the Attorney General, but who are these people, and how do they help the president? Meet the ladies and gentlemen of the Cabinet.

When it comes to politics, men tend to dominate, with women accounting for only about 10 percent of government leaders internationally. Which female politicians have trail-blazed a path to close that gender gap?

All they had to do was sit back and count the votes. They thought they had the presidential election in the bag -- until they didn't. Here's our list of some of the biggest collapses in presidential campaign history.

The use of political attack ads -- those that focus on rivals' shortfalls rather than preferred candidates' achievements -- has shot up in recent years. These negative ads may leave a bad taste in voters' mouths, but are they effective?

Presidential debates aren't really known for their fireworks, but these off-the-cuff moments definitely made sparks fly.

Historically in the United States, third parties have successfully steered political discourse and lawmaking, yet largely haven't stuck around long enough to get their own candidates into office. Which have had the best shot?

The probability of a single vote actually making a difference in a presidential election is one in 60 million. With those kinds of odds, what keeps people going out to the polls?

Lobbying has a long and storied history in American politics, but does it also deserve the bad rap it's taken for so long?

For years, pollsters and pundits have puzzled over how U.S. adults decide to cast their votes. Party affiliations and personal stances on electoral issues have a lot to do with it, of course, but does gender play a role, too?

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