Campaign 80 Highlights (Fall 1980: Part I)
Fall 1980: Kickoff to the 1980 Presidential campaign

Former CA Governor Ronald Reagan (R) kicked off the general election campaign following the GOP National Convention by doing an aggressive campaign blitz in the South, with the goal of cutting into the Southern support of Vice President Jimmy Carter. On August 27th, Reagan generated controversy & backlash when he delivered a campaign speech at the Neshoba County Fair in Philadelphia, MS (the site of where three voting rights workers will killed 16 years earlier): Reagan boasted of "States' Rights" & getting the federal government off of the American people's backs. Of course when asked of the controversy, Reagan denied the speech was racially-charged.

Vice President Carter blasted Reagan's controversial campaign kickoff speech at the Neshoba County Fair saying Reagan would gut all civil rights protections if he wins the Presidency & would set the country back to the 1840s. "America cannot afford a Reagan presidency that would roll back civil rights protections, gutting the Equal Rights Amendment, or destroy the progress that we've worked hard to achieve in the nearly 20+ years. We cannot give an untested novice with no foreign policy experience the keys of the Presidency when foreign leaders will test the leader of the free world in times of crisis."

BREAKING: United States Senator Dennis DeConicini (D-AZ) endorsing Reagan for President
The Arizona Republic reported that United States Senator Dennis DeConcini (D-AZ) confirmed he plans on endorsing the presidential campaign of former CA Governor Ronald Reagan (R) saying that Americans need a fresh face leading the country after four chaotic years of the Brown administration. DeConcini cited law & order & getting tough on crime as well as cutting unnecessary domestic programs as the main factors.

August 31st, 1980: Gallup Polling Survey
President Jerry Brown Job Approval Rating
Approve: 35%
Disapprove: 59%

First Lady Linda Ronstadt Brown Approval Rating
Approve: 83%
Disapprove: 11%

Vice President Jimmy Carter Approval Rating
Approve: 39%
Disapprove: 57%

Second Lady Rosalynn Carter Approval Rating
Approve: 73%
Disapprove: 23%

US Secretary of State Cyrus Vance Approval Rating
Approve: 43%
Disapprove: 55%

US Secretary of Defense Benjamin O. Davis, Jr., Approval Rating
Approve: 59%
Disapprove: 37%
Upcoming Segment in Chapter XIII 😎
Coming Up in the Cursed American Presidency
October 28th, 1980: The Big Presidential Debate between former CA Governor Ronald Reagan (R) vs Vice President Jimmy Carter
Campaign 80 Highlights (Fall 1980: Part II)
September 7th, 1980: Vice President Jimmy Carter punched in the face by baggy coat person during campaign rally
There was an ugly incident in Denver, CO where Vice President Jimmy Carter was holding a campaign rally along with United States Senator Gary Hart (D-CO), who was seeking reelection in the CO US Senate election. Carter was shaking hands with college students when someone wearing baggy jacket & looked older, walked up to the Vice President by badgering him about the inflation crisis, then the person in baggy clothes curtly said "Have a hotdog" & as the Vice President was about to ask for some ketchup, the person in baggy clothes raised his right fist & punched the Vice President in the face (who fell to the ground) to the absolute horror of those in the crowd as Secret Service agents took the Vice President to get medical attention while law enforcement officers from the Denver Police Department arrested the person in baggy clothes.

September 1980: Debates set for VP & President
The League of Women Voters confirmed there will be debates for President & Vice President. The first presidential debate is set for September 27th on the campus of the University of Maryland in College Park, MD; Second debate scheduled for October 6th in the LPB Studios in Baton Rouge, LA & the third debate will take place in Cleveland, OH on October 28th. Both Governor Reagan & Vice President Carter confirmed they'll be attending the debates, but neither have disclosed whether they'll do all three debates.

The Vice Presidential debate between former CIA Director George HW Bush & former US Secretary of State Walter Mondale will be set for October 13th in Phoenix, AZ; both Bush & Mondale confirmed they'll be attending.
Last edited:
National & International Segments (Fall 1980: Part III)
September 17th, 1980:

15 months after being ousted from office in the 1979 Sandinista Revolution, former Nicaraguan President Anastasio Somoza Debayle was assassinated as he was being driven from his home in Asuncion to a bank appointment by a team of Sandinistas consisting of four men & three women, who carried out Operation Reptile. At 10:08 AM, the former Nicaraguan President's vehicle was driving through a residential neighborhood on Avenida Espana, a stolen pickup truck had cut in front of the Mercedes & blocked Somoza's vehicle at the intersection of Avenida America. Three men in the truck were assisted by two additional men from the house around the corner of the neighborhood & fired automatic weapons striking Somoza 19 times; After killing the chauffeur, Hugo Iruzun, a member of the Sandinista team carrying out Operation Reptile, fired a rocket-launcher which destroyed the limousine, killing all inside the vehicle including the former President's financial consultant Jose Baittiner.

September 18th, 1980: Soviet lofting space capsule with Cuban astronaut
Arnaldo Tamayo Mendez of Cuba made history becoming the first person of African descent to travel in space, also becoming the first Cuban cosmonaut as he & Soviet astronaut Yuri V. Romanenko were launched on Soyuz 38 to the Salyut 6 space station.

September 20th, 1980:

Angered because of the League of Women Voters decision to inviting US Rep. John Anderson (I-IL) to the first presidential debate, Vice President Jimmy Carter refused to participate in the first presidential debate, which will be set in Baltimore, MD on September 27th. GOP Presidential nominee, former CA Governor Ronald Reagan (R) & Congressman Anderson will go ahead on debating each other in the upcoming first presidential debate.

September 21st, 1980: President Brown signs Intelligence Oversight Act into law
President Jerry Brown signed the Intelligence Oversight Act of 1980 into law, which requires the US government agencies in reporting covert actions to the intelligence committees of both the US House of Representatives & US Senate.
National & International Segments (Fall 1980: Part IV)
September 27th, 1980: First presidential debate occurs between Governor Reagan & Congressman Anderson
The first presidential debate between former CA Governor Ronald Reagan (R) & US Rep. John Anderson (I-IL) took place inside the Baltimore Convention Center in Baltimore, MD. The debate began at 10:00 PM EST & lasted for one HR; Reagan & Anderson each received six questions respectively, they were given two minutes to answering each question including one minute & 15 second rebuttal. Closing statements lasted three minutes.

October 6th, 1980: Congressman John Anderson (I-IL) to appear on the election ballots in all 51 states including DC
US Rep. John Anderson (I-IL) accomplished his goal as a third-party candidate for the Presidency by being on the election ballots in all 51 states including the District of Columbia. According to the Chicago Tribune, the US Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals refused to abating the decision from a district court, which would require Anderson's name being placed on the ballots in the state of GA.

October 13th, 1980: Vice Presidential debate between Bush & Mondale occurs
Estimated 43.6 million Americans watched the only Vice Presidential debate between former CIA Director George HW Bush & former US Secretary of State Walter Mondale inside Arizona Public Broadcasting Studios in Phoenix, AZ; this was the second Vice Presidential debate in American history; the first was in 1976.

October 17th, 1980: US signs pact guaranteeing Israel oil supplies
US President Jerry Brown signed an agreement on behalf of the United States, committing the US to selling sufficient crude oil for Israel to meeting its needs for 14 years through 1994.

Gallup Polling Survey: October 21st, 1980
Former Governor Ronald Reagan (R-CA): 44%
Vice President Jimmy Carter (D-GA): 40%
Congressman John Anderson (I-IL): 13%

October 23rd, 1980:

In another attempt in rescuing the American hostages out of Iran, the Brown administration approved a secret US military operation with the goal of rescuing the 57 American hostages which consisted of seven helicopters turned into another epic disaster & it comes just five days before the second & final presidential debate between former CA Governor Ronald Reagan (R) & Vice President Jimmy Carter.

Details of the botched military mission revealed three out of seven helicopters failed because they were struck by Iranian air missiles. In the midst of the disaster, a helicopter & tramsport plane collided, killing 13 American servicemen & servicewomen plus injuring 25 others. Upon learning news of the botched secret mission & deadly aftermath, American public opinion turned strongly against President Brown despite his administration's efforts in negotiating the release of the hostages. Americans were not only furious & angry with the Brown administration's incompetence, but felt increasingly humiliated that the most powerful nation in the world wasn't able to free the hostages.
Last edited:
The Second Presidential Debate in Cleveland, OH
October 28th, 1980
Convention Center Music Hall
Cleveland, OH


Ruth Hinerfeld, League of Women Voters, Education Fund: "Good evening. I'm Ruth Hinerfeld of the League of Women Voters Education Fund. Next Tuesday is Election Day. Before going to the polls, voters want to understand the issues and know the candidates' positions. Tonight, voters will have an opportunity to see and hear the major party candidates for the Presidency state their views on issues that affect us all. The League of Women Voters is proud to present this Presidential Debate. Our moderator is Howard K. Smith."

Howard K. Smith (ABC News): "Thank you, Mrs. Hinerfeld. The League of Women Voters is pleased to welcome to the Cleveland, Ohio, Convention Center Music Hall Vice President Jimmy Carter of Georgia, the Democratic Party's candidate for the Presidency and Governor Ronald Reagan, the Republican Party's candidate for the Presidency. The candidates will debate questions on domestic, economic, foreign policy, and national security issues. The questions are going to be posed by a panel of distinguished journalists who are here with me. They are: Marvin Stone, the editor of US News & World Report; Harry Ellis, national correspondent of the Christian Science Monitor; William Hilliard, assistant managing editor of the Portland Oregonian; Barbara Walters, correspondent, ABC News. The ground rules for this, as agreed by you gentlemen, are these: Each panelist down here will ask a question, the same question, to each of the two candidates. After the candidates have answered, a panelist will ask follow up questions to try to sharpen the answers. The candidates will then have an opportunity each to make a rebuttal. That will constitute the first half of the debate, and I will state the rules for the second half later on. Some other rules: The candidates are not permitted to bring prepared notes to the podium, but are permitted to make notes during the debate. If the candidates exceed the allotted time agreed on, I will reluctantly but certainly interrupt. We ask the Convention Center audience here to abide by one ground rule. Please do not applaud or express approval or disapproval during the debate. Now, based on the toss of the coin, Governor Reagan will respond to the first question from Marvin Stone."

Marvin Stone (US News & World Report): "Governor, as you're well aware, the question of war and peace has emerged as a central issue in this campaign in the give and take of recent weeks. President Brown has been criticized for responding late to aggressive Soviet impulses, for insufficient build-up of our armed forces and a paralysis in dealing with Afghanistan and Iran. You have been criticized for being all too quick to advocate the use of lots of muscle-military action-to deal with foreign crises. Specifically, what are the differences between yourself and Vice President Carter on the uses of American military power?"

Governor Reagan: "I don't know what the differences might be, because I don't know what Vice President Carter's policies are. I do know what he has said about mine. And I'm only here to tell you that I believe with all my heart that our first priority must be world peace, and that use of force is always and only a last resort, when everything else has failed, and then only with regard to our national security. Now, I believe, also, that this meeting this mission, this responsibility peculiar to our country, and that we cannot shirk our responsibility as a leader of the free world because we're the only ones that can do it. Therefore, the burden of maintaining the peace falls on us. And to maintain that peace requires strength. America has never gotten in a war because we're too strong. We can get into a war by letting events get out of hand, as they have in the last three and a half years under the foreign policies of this administration that Mr. Carter is part of, until we're faced each time with a crisis. And good management in preserving the peace requires that we control the events and try to intercept before they become a crisis. I have seen four wars in my lifetime. I'm a father of sons; I have a grandson. I don't ever want to see another generation of young Americans bleed their lives into shady beacheads in the Pacific, or rice paddies and jungles in the in Asia or the muddy battlefields of Europe."

Howard K. Smith (ABC News): "Mr. Stone, do you have a follow-up question for the Governor?"

Marvin Stone (US News & World Report): "Yes. Governor, we've been hearing that the defense build-up that you would associate yourself with would cost tens of billions of dollars more than is now contemplated. Assuming the American people are ready to bear this cost, they nevertheless keep asking the following question: How do you reconcile huge increases in military outlays with your promise of substantial tax cuts and of balancing the budget, which in this fiscal year, the one that just ended, ran more than $60 billion in the red?"

Governor Reagan: "Mr. Stone, I have submitted an economic plan that I have worked out in concert with a number of fine economists in this country, all of whom approve it, and believe that over a five year projection, this plan can permit the extra spending for needed refurbishing of our defensive posture, that it can provide for a balanced budget by 1983 if not earlier, and that we can afford-along with the cuts that I have proposed in government spending-we can afford the tax cuts I have proposed and probably mainly because Mr. Carter's economic policy is a continuation of the Brown administration's disastrous economic policy, which has built into the next five years, and beyond that, a tax increase that will be taking $86 billion more out of the people's pockets than was taken this year. And my tax cuts do not come close to eliminating that $86 billion increase. I'm only reducing the amount of the increase. In other words, what I'm talking about is not putting government back to getting less money than government's been getting, but simply cutting the increase in spending."

Howard K. Smith (ABC News): "The same question goes to Vice President Carter. Vice President Carter, would you like to have the question repeated?"

Marvin Stone (US News & World Report): "Yes, Vice President Carter, the question of war and peace, a central issue in this campaign. You and the Brown administration have been criticized for, in the give and take, for responding late to aggressive Soviet impulses, for an insufficient build-up of our armed forces, and a paralysis in dealing with Afghanistan and Iran. Governor Reagan, on the other hand, has been criticized for being all too quick to advocate the use of lots of muscle-military action-to deal with foreign crises such as I have mentioned. Specifically, what are the differences between the two of you on the uses of American military power?"

Vice President Carter: "Mr. Stone, under the Brown-Carter administration over the past four years, we had to make thousands of decisions since I have been serving as Vice President. And with each one of those decisions that affect the future of my country, I have learned in the process. I think I'm a much wiser and more experienced man than I was when I debated four years ago. I've also learned that there are no simple answers to complicated questions. H.L. Mencken said that for every problem there's a simple answer. It would be neat and plausible and wrong. The fact is that this nation, in the eight years before President Brown and I took office, had its own military strength decreased. Seven out of eight years, the budget commitments for defense went down, 37%, in all. Since the Brown-Carter administration has been in office, we've had a steady, carefully planned, methodical but, very effective increase in our commitment for defense. But what we've done is use that enormous power and prestige and military strength of the United States to preserve the peace. We've not only kept peace for our own country, but we've been able to extend the benefits of peace to others. In the Middle East, we've worked for a peace treaty between Israel and Egypt, successfully, and have tied ourselves together with Israel and Egypt in a common defense capability. This is a very good step forward for our nation's security, and we'll continue to do as we have done in the past. I might also add that there are decisions made in the Oval Office by every President if either of us is elected next Tuesday, which is profound in nature. There are always trouble spots in the world, and how these troubled areas are addressed alone in that Oval Office affects our nation directly, the involvement of the United States and also our American interests. That is a basic decision that has to be made so frequently, by every President who serves. That is what the Brown-Carter administration has tried to do successfully by keeping our country at peace."

Howard K. Smith (ABC News): "Mr. Stone, do you have a follow-up for?"

Marvin Stone (US News & World Report): "Yes. I would like to be a little more specific on the use of military power and let's talk about one area for a moment. Under what circumstances would you use military forces to deal with, for example, a shut-off of the Persian Oil Gulf (sic) if that should occur, or to counter Russian expansion beyond Afghanistan into either Iran or Pakistan? I ask this question in view of charges that we are woefully unprepared to project sustained-and I emphasize the word sustained-power in that part of the world."

Vice President Carter: "Mr. Stone, earlier this year, I pointed out that any threat to the stability or security of the Persian Gulf would be a threat to the security of our own country. In the past, we have not had an adequate military presence in that region. Now we have two major carrier task forces. We have access to facilities in five different areas of that region. And we've made it clear that working with our allies and others, that we are prepared to address any foreseeable eventuality which might interrupt commerce with that crucial area of the world. But in doing this, we have made sure that we address this questions peacefully, not injecting American military forces into combat, but letting the strength of our nation be felt in a beneficial way. This, I believe, has assured that our interests will be protected in the Persian Gulf region, as we have done in the Middle East and throughout the world."

Howard K. Smith (ABC News): "Governor Reagan, you have a minute to comment or rebut."

Governor Reagan: "Well yes, I question the figure about the decline in defense spending under the three previous administrations preceding eight years to this administration. I would call to your attention that we were in a war that wound down during those eight years, which of course made a change in military spending because of turning from war to peace. I also would like to point out that Republican presidents in those years, faced with a Democratic majority in both houses of the Congress, found that their requests for defense budgets were often cut. Now, Nelson Rockefeller left a five-year projected plan for a military build-up to restore our defenses, and President Brown's administration reduced that by 38 percent, cutting 60 ships out of the Navy building program that had been proposed, and stopped the B-1, delayed the cruise missile, stopped the production line for the Minuteman missile, stopped the Trident or delayed the Trident submarine, and now is planning a mobile military force that can be delivered to various spots in the world which does make me question his assaults on whether I am the one who is quick to look for use of force."

Howard K. Smith (ABC News): "Vice President Carter, you have the last word on this question."
Last edited:
National & International Segments (Fall 1980: Part V)
November 1st, 1980: Jobs Report showing US lost 773,000+ jobs during October; US now officially in economic recession
As if more bad news wasn't good enough, the ongoing inflation & economic crises which has engulfed the Brown administration including ongoing international incidents such as the Iran Hostage Crisis, the October Jobs Report turned into a complete disaster for the US: Newly published data revealed there had been a net loss of over 773,000 jobs lost during the month of October. This comes as the Brown administration & the Dem-controlled Congress has failed to come up with agreement on an economic recovery package & following avoiding a potential government shutdown in a last-minute compromise budget passed & signed into law back in September. However, the markets are still nervous with unclear political outcome of the coming months.

GOP Presidential nominee, former CA Governor Ronald Reagan (R) faulted both President Brown & the Dem-controlled Congress for "inaction and utter refusal to take any responsibility", during one of his last campaign stumps in Baton Rouge, LA just before heading back to the Golden State. Vice President Jimmy Carter reacted to the news & blasted GOP economic policies during a campaign rally in Seattle, WA St, on November 2nd. Carter again called for the need of zero-based budgeting including tax reforms needed which lowers tax rates for the middle class & raises some taxes for upper incomes including an economic recovery program for small businesses.

The Washington Post reported that this report "pretty much shifted the balance in the presidential election back into Governor Reagan's favor." Independent economists called upon Congress & the Brown administration to setting up an economic & jobs program during the lame duck session, regardless of who wins the 1980 Presidential election.

November 2nd, 1980: Overall End-game for the Iranian government: Running out the clock on the Brown administration
According to foreign policy analysts, it's becoming more apparent that Iranian Islamic leader Ayatollah Khomeini was perhaps more interested in viciously punishing US President Jerry Brown than in humbling the United States. With two days left before the US presidential election of 1980, Iran announced stiff terms for release of the hostages------timing the announcement so it would have the strong maximum effect on American voters going to the polls on November 4th, which by coincidence marked the one year of captivity for the 57 American hostages.

November 3rd, 1980: Final campaign rallies

Vice President Jimmy Carter campaigning in Granite City, IL.

Following the second & final presidential debate, Vice President Jimmy Carter & former CA Governor Ronald Reagan (R) held their final campaign rallies during the closing stretch of the 1980 presidential election. Vice President Jimmy Carter campaigned in Brownsville, TX; San Antonio, TX; Abilene, TX; Fort Worth, TX; Milwaukee, WI; Chicago, IL on November 1st. On November 3rd, following campaign stops in Akron, OH; Granite City, IL; East St. Louis, IL; Springfield, MO; Detroit, MI; Portland, OR & held a final campaign rally in Seattle, WA St inside the Flightcraft Hangar of the Boeing Field International Airport where Carter put Reagan on full-blast by calling out the former CA Governor on opposing civil rights legislation, Medicaid, Medicare & other domestic programs. He also quoted a speech from the late United States Senator Robert F. Kennedy (D-NY St) & ended the campaign rally telling the crowd "Tomorrow, you have a decision to make as the nation is watching and the entire world. This is one of the most important elections in our lifetime since World War II. Vote for American democracy! Vote Democratic and most of all, vote for yourselves. Thank you very much."

Former CA Governor Ronald Reagan campaigns in Youngstown, OH during aggressive campaign blitz.

Over on the GOP side, Reagan held full-scale campaign blitz with stops in Youngstown, OH; Columbus, OH; Pittsburgh, PA; Lansing, MI; Springfield, IL; Nashville, TN; Phoenix, AZ & finally in Baton Rouge, LA before heading back to his home state of CA, where he delivered a special campaign address discussing his vision for America if elected President. OH Governor Jim Rhodes (R) was asked by local news affiliates about Reagan's chances in the Buckeye State, "Governor Reagan will win Ohio and it's 25 Electoral Votes and I am strongly confident he'll be our next President. Everywhere I've traveled in this great state, I'm hearing from Ohioans that they're ready to turn the page following four failed years of the incompetent and extremely chaotic Brown administration. I'll also further and predict Republicans will win back control of the United States Senate and you'll be surprised to see lots of Republican gains in the US House of Representatives, State Legislatures and Governorships."

Final Gallup Polling Survey: November 3rd, 1980
President Jerry Brown Job Approval Rating
Approve: 25%
Disapprove: 73%

Final Gallup Polling Survey: November 3rd, 1980
Former Governor Ronald Reagan (R-CA): 43%
Vice President Jimmy Carter (D-GA): 36%
Congressman John Anderson (I-IL): 6%

Coming Up: Election Night Results highlights from November 4th, 1980.
Last edited:
National & International Segments (Fall 1980: Part VI)
November 3rd, 1980: National & International Headlines:

*The next President will inherit major difficult problems both domestically & internationally
Chicago Tribune (November 2nd, 1980).

*What Carter can do to teach America & what the next four years of his presidency will impact overall?
Charlotte Observer (November 2nd, 1980).

*Could Anderson force the 1980 presidential election to be thrown to Congress? Americans waiting for conclusion of the suspense
Boston Globe (November 3rd, 1980).

*Polling experts: How long will the wait continue on a President-elect? The list of battleground states which could decide the Presidency
Baltimore Sun (November 3rd, 1980).

*Foreign Policy & International Affairs: The next President of the United States will need to repair these alliances with the following nations
Manila Times (November 3rd, 1980): Philippines.

*The US Presidential election Europe will remember for generations
Le Monde (November 3rd, 1980): France.

*US-Spain Relations will be beneficial under either Carter or Reagan administration
El Pais (November 3rd, 1980: Spain.

*Most important US Presidential election since 1932: How it'll impact US-Great Britain relations
BBC News (November 3rd, 1980): Great Britain.
Election Night in America: ABC News (Part I)
November 4th, 1980

6:00 PM EST
Frank Reynolds:
"Welcome back viewers. The 1980 presidential election has officially begun and it's 6:00 PM because the first polls have closed both in Indiana and Kentucky. And we've got a winner in both of them: According to our data and the ABC News Decision Desk, ABC News can project that former California Governor Ronald Reagan has won the state of Indiana and its 13 electoral votes, which go into the Republican column with 56 percent of the statewide vote there. As for Kentucky, Governor Reagan is the winner over there in the Bluegrass State. In 1976, President Jerry Brown carried Kentucky in his successful presidential campaign that year due to his Southern Strategy path."

Ted Koppel: "We need to add that while Governor Reagan won Kentucky and its 9 electoral votes, he won Kentucky very narrowly with 49.07 percent of the statewide vote. Vice President Jimmy Carter garnered 47.61 percent of the vote."

Former Governor Ronald Reagan (R-CA)/Former CIA Director George HW Bush (R-TX): 22 Electoral Votes
Vice President Jimmy Carter (D-GA)/Former US Secretary of State Walter Mondale (D-MN): 0 Electoral Votes
Polls Not Closed: 521 Electoral Votes

7:00 PM EST

Reagan: 49.57%
Carter: 48.04%

Frank Reynolds:
"The time is Seven o'clock and the time of the next polling closings in Vermont, Virginia, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida. We cannot make a projection for any of them expect for South Carolina and its 8 electoral votes, which will be going to Governor Reagan's column. What was once a Democratic state, its turned away from the Democrats in recent years at the national level once Democratic Presidents have begun supporting civil rights and the national Democratic Party has shifted to liberalism, which has alienated many conservative South Carolinians. In 1976, President Brown won the Palmetto State and now it's shifted back to the Republicans. Governor Reagan now has 30 electoral votes, bringing him to 30 electoral votes overall.

Ted Koppel: "Vice President Carter meanwhile hasn't even earned a single electoral vote as of yet. However, this isn't surprising at this stage of the campaign election results. Four years ago, Carter's presence on the ticket as a southerner helped the Democrats win Kentucky and South Carolina, but now both of these states have flipped Republican. This might be quite a long night if the current trend continues."

7:25 PM EST
(FL: 17 Electoral Votes: President)

Reagan: 55%✔
Carter: 38%

(VT: 3 Electoral Votes: President)
Reagan: 44%✔
Carter: 38%

(VA: 12 Electoral Votes: President)
Reagan: 54%✔
Carter: 37%

Ted Koppel: "Just hold on everyone because we've got new projections from the ABC News Decision Desk and I'm hearing that ABC News projects Governor Reagan has won three more states: Florida (17 electoral votes), Vermont (3 electoral votes) and the Commonwealth of Virginia (12 electoral votes). In the Sunshine State, Governor Reagan won there resoundingly by double digits with 55 percent of the statewide vote; In Vermont, Reagan edged out Carter by six percentage points in a three-way race since Congressman Anderson is on the ballot in all 51 states; and in the Commonwealth of Virginia: Governor Reagan won by double digits with 54 percent of the vote. Adding up the number of electoral votes, Governor Reagan now has 62 electoral votes while Vice President Carter is stuck at zero electoral votes."

7:37 PM EST
Frank Reynolds:
"ABC News projects Vice President Carter has won his home state of Georgia and its 12 electoral votes and garnering 55 percent of the statewide vote and overwhelmingly won the District of Columbia with 75 percent of the vote, putting the incumbent Vice President on the electoral vote board with 15 electoral votes overall. I believe we've got another call in terms of the United States Senate as incumbent Democratic United States Senator Wendell Ford of Kentucky has been reelected to a second term with 65 percent of the statewide vote. This is a very important call for Democrats if they want to maintain their majority in the United States Senate. Yet, there is a strong possibility Republicans have more avenues to flipping Senate seats in their goal of winning back control of the United States Senate after 26 years in the wilderness."

8:00 PM EST

Frank Reynolds:
"It's now eight o'clock and I believe you've got more projections for us, Ted?"

Ted Koppel: "Yes sir Frank. I want to give two more additional updates because ABC News projects Governor Reagan will be the winner in Delaware and its 3 electoral votes and Mississippi with 7 electoral votes according to the preliminary reports of the ABC News Decision Desk. Big question is whether could we be looking at a potential Reagan landslide victory tonight or will we be in for a long night like all of us were back in 1976?"

Frank Reynolds: "That's a good question Ted. Four years ago, the uncertainty of the 1976 presidential election hinged upon Texas: which the United States Supreme Court ultimately ruled in favor of the Jerry Brown campaign that year and ultimately made Brown the 40th President of the United States in December of 1976. Could history repeat itself again? 1960, 1968 and 1976 have had close election results. I believe we've got George Will here with us to discuss what's happening here tonight on the election results including Republicans' quest of winning back control of the United States Senate for the first time since 1952."


Former Governor Ronald Reagan (R-CA)/Former CIA Director George HW Bush (R-TX): 72 Electoral Votes
Vice President Jimmy Carter (D-GA)/Former US Secretary of State Walter Mondale (D-MN): 15 Electoral Votes
Polls Not Closed: 456 Electoral Votes
Last edited:
Election Night in America: ABC News (Part II)
8:25 PM EST
Frank Reynolds:
"Welcome back, Ladies and Gentlemen, to ABC News' special coverage of the 80 Vote on election night. Less than an hour ago, the polls have closed in the following states: West Virginia, Ohio, North Carolina. As Governor Reagan and Vice President Carter are facing off in an epic close battle for the White House in who'll be succeeding outgoing President Brown, who isn't seeking reelection after four years in office. I believe we've got more information on the Senate. Ted, what do we have?"

Ted Koppel: "Let me give you some sense of what's happening in Georgia on the Senate side, as incumbent Democratic United States Senator Herman Talmadge, who was facing some trouble in the Democratic primary against Georgia Lieutenant Governor Zell Miller which went into a runoff, where Talmadge emerged victorious but he was facing a tough general election campaign by Republican challenger Mack Mattingly but we are confident enough to project Senator Talmadge has been reelected to a fifth term in the United States Senate. Talmadge was recently denounced by the Senate Ethics Committee for financial improprieties that had been committed during his last senatorial reelection campaign in 1974, so there was some sense that Talmadge could be in trouble not enough trouble though to, take that seat away from him. Herman Talmadge has maintained his Senate seat in the US Senate. Let's go now to Lynn Sherr who has some more information on exit polls."

Lynn Sherr: "Ted, one of the things that Vice President Carter was counting on was a rather large women's vote that was supposed to be because women are considered more dovish than men and the Democrats were hoping that would therefore be to their advantage but it turns out that as far it isn't happening, let's take a look at the women's vote overall right now. It appears to us as if Vice President Carter is not winning the women's vote as he is not overall apparently we do not have our graphics prepared yet for that but let me tell you about it, the women's vote at the moment appears to be going 50 percent half of it for Governor Reagan and 40 percent for Vice President Carter and 8 percent for Congressman Anderson there you can see it; you didn't tell that Governor Reagan is winning it, Vice President Carter isn't doing all that well now just for your information, that's not all that different from the way the men's vote is breaking down so we should point out that while some women did say that the, there's are, the male voters bored, let's tell you about that. Vice President Carter getting 34 percent of the men's vote; Governor Reagan getting 55 percent and Congressman Anderson getting 9 percent. Again pretty close to the way it was before.
So as we say, there is no so-called women's vote at least not on that issue so far in this election that something Vice President Carter was hoping he would get, Frank."

Frank Reynolds: "Thank you Lynn. Let's briefly review where we stand at this point on election night with a look at our national vote totals with only six percent in its 53 percent to 42 percent for Governor Reagan leading Vice President Carter at this point. The victory for Governor Reagan in the state of Florida however was projected by ABC News is quite significant because it indicate that he probably wasn't hurt by one of the key issues the Vice President Carter raised against him, namely worries that Governor Reagan's election might in some way jeopardized a social security system which is a very important issue in the state of Florida. We'll have more on the 80 Vote right after these commercial breaks."
Last edited:
Election Night in America: ABC News (Part III)
8:37 PM EST
Ted Koppel:
"ABC News is now able to project that incumbent United States Senator John Glenn of Ohio will win reelection in a resounding massive landslide victory, holding onto his Senate seat there. So lets Glenn over Jim Betts in fact, Jim Betts, the, the, Republican Party had trouble finding anyone to run against John Glenn and they finally found Mr. Betts, who was willing to do battle, it wasn't good enough. We are going to have some projections now on some early House races in Washington, here's Britt Hume."

Britt Hume: "Ted, the Republicans are expected to gain ground in the House tonight but not nearly enough to get control of the House. However, a number of House leaders are in very tough races for reelection including House Majority Whip John Brown Imus out in Indiana, a state which you gentlemen earlier this evening projected for Governor Ronald Reagan a winner for Brown Imus' Senate colleague, Birch Bayh a loser and it appears that Mr. Brown Imus is in very severe trouble out there tonight and in a very close race indeed. On the Republican side, all the official leaders appear to be in good shape, but the unofficial conservative floor leader Robert Bauman of Maryland is in very serious trouble that the result of his being placed on probation in a case involving an allegation of homosexual solicitation.
Tonight, we will also see the result of one of the most interesting spectacles of the current campaign and that's been the site of a number of House members running hard for reelection while facing criminal charges as a result of the FBI's Abscam operation."

*(Hume's segment on the House incumbents facing corruption allegations)

Brit Hume:
"It is a paradox of American politics that the public tends to hold Congress in low esteem but to exempt their own individual congressmen from that judgement; the Abscam defendants would be seeming to be giving that principle a stiff test tonight, Frank."

Frank Reynolds: "Thank you Britt, we'll keep track of all the Abscam types as we go on through the evening, ABC News has projected in the presidential race: Indiana, Delaware, Mississippi, Kentucky, South Carolina, Florida, Vermont and Virginia for Governor Reagan; Georgia and the District of Columbia for Vice President Carter. The polls have closed in Ohio including a number of other states and we'll be right on top of that too. Well, it is November 4th and what happened on November 4th, 1979, everybody knows the situation is still the same although of course there is renewed hope now particularly in the last couple of days.
Barbara Walters is waiting to talk with a distinguished woman who much against her will, I suspect has become a public figure in this last year, Mrs. Kennedy, Barbara?"

Barbara Walters: "Thank you Frank. This is Louisa Kennedy, Mrs. Morehead Kennedy, Jr., whose husband is one of the hostages in Iran. Mrs. Kennedy has not heard from him since last August and this is a grim anniversary to be celebrating or celebrating is the wrong word to be a commemorating yes, but I must ask you with all of the ups and downs and everything you've been through what are your feelings tonight?"

Louisa Kennedy: "Very expectant. I think I'm talking about two things first of all the three elections tonight which we have finally gotten to here and which spell something of such importance for the next four years for the United States. At the same time, this week certainly has offered us some positive signs coming from Tehran and although it hasn't practice of today it does because it will very soon."

(Discussion between Barbara Walters & Louisa Kennedy on the situation with the American hostages in Iran, etc.,)
Last edited:
Election Night in America: ABC News (Part IV)
8:52 PM EST

Frank Reynolds:
"Now we have another important race on the gubernatorial level, Max?"

Max Robinson: "Frank, ABC News is now able to project that incumbent Democratic Governor James Hunt in North Carolina is the winner of the North Carolina gubernatorial election. James Hunt, powerful and popular Governor of North Carolina in his reelection campaign against State Senator I. Beverly Lake, who changed his party affiliation to run against Hunt with the backing of conservative Republican Senator Jesse Helms. Many feel that Hunt, who will serve another four years and will not be able to succeed himself will run against Jesse Helms four years from now when Jesse Helms' Senate seat is up and they figure at that point, the two most powerful political forces in the state will collide, Frank."

Frank Reynolds: "Thank you, Max. If you saw the evening news broadcast tonight, you saw an emotional moment when Vice President Carter was addressing the townspeople in Plains, Georgia and talking to them about how he strove, fought to keep his commitment to them and to uphold the honor and integrity of the country. Well thus far, it must be said the news tonight is not encouraging for the Vice President, we want to go to the Number One Observatory Circle now to our White House correspondent who logged more than 6,000 miles traveling with Mr. Carter yesterday we want to congratulate him first of all on being able to stand up, Sam Donaldson."

Sam Donaldson: "Well, Frank, the mood here at the Number One Observatory Circle is one of resignation tinged with serenity interestingly enough, no one seems to be bitter, no one seems to be angry, but there is a deep understanding here of what has happened to Vice President Carter today as I reported on the evening news before the polls opened this morning, Mr. Carter's pollster, Pat Caddell had told campaign officials that the numbers were not there for him and that he was not going to win this election and so Mr. Carter, I thought carried it off very well this morning in Plains, he voted and he came out of the voting booth and we all asked him who he voted for. Well, he said he voted for himself, the best man. And I asked him what would you do Mr. Vice President if you lose?
And he said, well, I will abide by the judgement of the American people and I said no no, I mean what are your plans? And he said "Oh well, I don't intend to lose." He knew at that time, that the numbers weren't there and then as you point out he went to the train station and it was reminiscent of that glorious morning four years ago when he and then-Governor Brown had won the election narrowly and he was there in the street with his wife and there was another emotional moment as he talked about a new day dawning. This morning, he talked about hoping that he had kept commitments to his townspeople and his fellow Georgians into the country hoped that he had been worthy of their having sent him to Washington to be Vice President and he choked up and then finally got through it and said God bless you.
So Mr. Carter is here in the Number One Observatory Circle tonight at some point this evening, he will go to a local hotel where a celebration is planned but of course it will not be a celebration, he will make a statement and then he will retire and I'm certain in his own mind, he will have felt that he had done his best and then he would have no regrets about the campaign or about his Vice Presidency, gentlemen."

Ted Koppel: "Well, it is of course much too early for anyone to make any firm projection, most of the nation's polls are still open and we are not in the business of making projections yet on who is winning the presidential race. It has been projected in a number of states and Frank, I think you'll agree particularly in states like Mississippi, Delaware, South Carolina and Kentucky, that is not good news for Vice President Carter and it certainly doesn't look as though Mr. Carter is going to be able to keep the Presidency in Democratic hands. One of the big questions is how much of a margin if in fact Ronald Reagan wins by how much of a margin and how many Republican Senators he can bring with him. Let's take a quick look at some of the Senate races we have called already.
Not too surprisingly, Herman Talmadge in Georgia over Mack Mattingly, Wendell Ford in Kentucky over Mary Louise Foust, John Glenn in Ohio over Jim Betts, and Fritz Hollings in South Carolina over Marshall Mays. The big surprise, not the big surprise, because he had been targeted heavily by conservative groups but the big change over a Democratic seat, Birch Bayh's Senate seat in Indiana has now gone over to Dan Quayle, the 33-year-old Congressman. So there's the first change, there maybe others as the evening progresses, Frank."

Frank Reynolds: "Thank you, Ted. The vote totals, the national popular vote totals with three percent of the precincts reporting in: 52 percent for Governor Reagan, 43 percent for Vice President Carter and 4 percent for Congressman Anderson. Our electoral college election night map shows red for Reagan and blue for Vice President Carter: the only blue state you see there is Georgia including the District of Columbia. That's those are the electoral college votes have gone to here, that's the national election picture at 52 minutes after the hour."

(Music blaring of the ABC News theme for The 80 Vote)
Last edited:
Election Night in America: ABC News (Part V)
9:00 PM EST

(OH 25 Electoral Votes: President)
Reagan: 55%
Carter: 35%
Anderson: 8%

(WV 6 Electoral Votes: President)
Carter: 55%
Reagan: 40%
Anderson: 5%

Frank Reynolds:
"Good evening once again. While we were away, an immensely important state was projected by ABC News. Ohio with its 25 electoral votes will go for Governor Ronald Reagan, the Republican candidate. This is a reversal, President Jerry Brown won Ohio in 1976 and Ohio's 25 votes were crucial to his victory because he won by only 27 but we have projected now that Governor Ronald Reagan will take Ohio. We have another projection. This one is not a surprise, West Virginia will go for Vice President Carter according to ABC News on the basis of returns from our key precincts; Six electoral college votes, Vice President Carter winning West Virginia by a comfortable margin see if I have, its comfortable also for Reagan in Ohio. Let's have a quick at our map now to show you just exactly how this stacks up at this stage of the election night.
Red for Governor Regan and blue for Vice President Carter.
Reagan has won nine states for a total of 97 electoral college votes and Vice President Carter has won two states: West Virginia and Georgia including the District of Columbia for a total of 21 electoral college votes. The map does not actually show the electoral college votes, but that's the set up as of right now. 97 for Governor Reagan and 21 for Vice President Carter with 270 needed to win the Presidency. So, Reagan has taken Ohio, Carter has taken West Virginia. That's the latest news now to find out what happened in Ohio and just why the people there reversed their decision of 1976, we go again to Lynn Sherr, Lynn?"


Former Governor Ronald Reagan (R-CA)/Former CIA Director George HW Bush (R-TX): 97 Electoral Votes
Vice President Jimmy Carter (D-GA)/Former US Secretary of State Walter Mondale (D-MN): 21 Electoral Votes
Polls Not Closed: 425

Last edited:
Election Night in America: ABC News (Part VI)
9:04 PM EST
(AL 9 Electoral Votes: President)
Carter: 48%✔
Reagan: 47%

(NC 13 Electoral Votes: President)
Carter: 49%✔
Reagan: 47%

Frank Reynolds:
"Alabama and its 9 electoral votes will go to Vice President Carter, who won the Land of Dixie very narrowly with 48 percent of the statewide vote while Governor Reagan garnered 47 percent. And ABC News can also project that North Carolina and its 13 electoral votes will go to Vice President Carter, who won the Tar Heel State with 49 percent to Governor Reagan's 47 percent. I am not sure if we could be seeing some sort of a so-called "Carter Surge" in the South or not, but there is a slight and I mean slight possibility that this election might not be called this evening. Ted, this has to be a huge deal for the Carter campaign, who had earlier assumed this would be a blowout loss tonight and this might change the whole game because we haven't called other states in the South: Oklahoma, Maryland, Arkansas, Tennessee, Texas and Louisiana."

Ted Koppel: "I agree with you Frank because if Vice President Carter can somehow pull off some wins in Arkansas, Maryland, Tennessee and Louisiana, we could be seeing a whole new ball game here. However, we can expect Governor Reagan to easily win Oklahoma and Texas due to strong turnout among conservatives and Republicans gaining in both of these states."


Former Governor Ronald Reagan (R-CA)/Former CIA Director George HW Bush (R-TX): 97 Electoral Votes
Vice President Jimmy Carter (D-GA)/Former US Secretary of State Walter Mondale (D-MN): 43 Electoral Votes
Polls Not Closed: 403
Last edited:
Election Night in America: ABC News (Part VII)
9:07 PM EST

Ted Koppel:
"All right back on the theme of some of these conservative groups that have been trying to knock off some liberal candidates: their first success of the night appears to have been Birch Bayh in Indiana when I say appears to have been, he has lost in Indiana whether or not the conservatives are responsible for that, no one knows but if, if anyone has an insight into the campaign there and Birch Bayh's years in the Senate; it is our Senate correspondent Cassie Mackin, Cassie?"

Cassie Mackin: "Yes, Ted. Bayh was chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee and through his three terms in the Senate, he had worked his way all the way up to second ranking member on the Senate Judiciary Committee, that committee is chaired by Senator Edward Kennedy but Bayh was also chairman of the Subcommittee on the Constitution and as chairman of that subcommittee, he shepherded through the Congress: the constitutional amendments on the 18-year-old vote; on presidential succession and on the Equal Rights Amendment, so the man has quite a distinguished record in the United States Senate; he is a reliable liberal middle-of-the-road Senator, he is well-liked, well respected by his fellow Senate colleagues and there is no question that his leaving here will leave a big empty space among his fellow Democrats."

Ted Koppel: "Thank you Cassie. We'll have more on the 80 Vote right after these commercial breaks."

(Music theme from ABC Evening World News on The 80 Vote)

9:19 PM EST

(NH 4 Electoral Votes: President)
Reagan: 71%✔
Carter: 24%

Frank Reynolds:
"Another projection now by ABC News, this our first from New England: but from a state this is not exactly a stranger to politics, New Hampshire will give its 4 electoral votes to Governor Ronald Reagan, the Republican candidate. It's always ironic how hard the Democrats work up there to win the New Hampshire primary and then New Hampshire forgets about them and they forget about New Hampshire. You notice that the size of the vote was very, very small there but we do this on the basis of our key precincts that are reported in and also of course with the great help of the League of Women Voters who phone in the results from these key precincts were very grateful to them for their cooperation and we want to thank them not only now but many times through this evening for volunteering their effort. Ted, you have a Senate projection."

Ted Koppel: "I do indeed. No great surprise, there a wide margin: Robert Dole of Kansas, the Republican has defeated his Democratic opponent, John Simpson, who had previously been a Republican but switched parties just to challenge Senator Dole. So Senator Bob Dole has been reelected by an overwhelming wide margin in the Kansas Senate race. Let's go now to Jim Wolf."

Jim Wolf: "Uh Frank and Ted, I'm here with chairman William Brock of the Republican National Committee. It's a different sort of evening tonight for you than it was four years ago. You're winning in Ohio, we've projected you to win in Florida, you must feel pretty good about how things are going right now."

RNC Chairman William Brock: "I feel fantastic. We're gonna have a, I think an incredible win for Governor Reagan which was well deserved and I think the party will have a wide win all the way down to the legislative level and that's the fun of it, it's going to be a good night."

Jim Wolf: "Now we're getting reports that there was heavy turnout in a great many of these states in which Governor Reagan seems to be doing really very well; that goes against the traditional, the conventional wisdom that heavy turnouts help Democrats. Is the conventional wisdom dead this year, this time?"

RNC Chairman William Brock: "Yeah, because people when they get mad and they get hurt as they have been by unemployment, by inflation, they're gonna vote for a change and the way to do that, that's been our message all year to vote Republican for a change and I think that's exactly what we've seen where I had hope very much for a large turnout because we thought this was what would happen."

Jim Wolf: "Well now you're talking about specific issues that have worked against Vice President Carter obviously inflation and unemployment, the entire economic scene. Is there a sense in the Republican executive ranks at least the strategists and the wise men of your party that this is actually a realignment? That there is a major realignment going on here?"

RNC Chairman William Brock: "We've been trying for it for four years, we're getting very strong support because you've noticed from the Catholic community not a traditional Republican community, from blue-collar workers, from union members, we're getting 25 percent of the Democrats in this country so far. Now what that does is it gives you a chance to build a coalition and it is through coalition that you govern and govern effectively, I think that's one of the more important things that's happening in this election because it does argue for a very strong administration that's what we need."

Jim Wolf: "Are you persuaded that voters, Democrats for instance, who went more to Reagan this time then they did to Carter. Are they just satisfied with Carter or more attracted to Reagan? What's your instinct on that?"

RNC Chairman William Brock: "Yes (laughter ensues). Well we've tried to do and arguing for a vote up and down the whole ticket this year is to say that the Democrats have been in power now for 25 consecutive years in the Congress. It isn't just in the White House that we need to make changes and I think voters have decided that perhaps we really need a lot of new faces in politics; better faces, people that are you know, newly elected because that means they'll pay more attention to the average voter."

Jim Wolf: "Thank you Chairman Brock, Frank?"


Frank Reynolds: "Bill Brock, the Republican National Chairman, who lost his Senate seat four years ago to Senator Jim Sasser in a Brown sweep of the state of Tennessee. Well, if you were watching that interview as well as listening to it, you saw that ABC News has now projected Kansas' electoral college votes: seven in all, will go to Governor Ronald Reagan. So ABC News now has projected Governor Reagan the winner in eleven states for the total of 108 electoral college votes; Vice President Carter in four states including the District of Columbia with a total of 43 electoral college votes. If there not breaking out the champagne at the Reagan headquarters now, it's only because they're, well they can't find an opener. ABC News can also project that Oklahoma and it's eight electoral votes will go to Governor Reagan, giving him 116 electoral votes while Vice President Carter has 43 electoral votes."
Last edited:
Election Night in America: ABC News (Part X)
Reagan: 56%
Carter: 36%
Anderson: 7%

(African Americans)
Carter: 83%
Reagan: 14%
Anderson: 3%

Carter: 56%
Reagan: 37%
Anderson: 7%

Carter: 45%
Reagan: 44%
Anderson: 11%

Carter: 44%
Reagan: 44%
Anderson: 10%

Reagan: 55%
Carter: 38%
Anderson: 7%

Reagan: 55%
Carter: 39%
Anderson: 6%

Reagan: 55%
Carter: 41%
Anderson: 4%
Election Night in America: ABC News (Part XI)
9:25 PM EST

Frank Reynolds:
"We've got new projections coming out as ABC News projects that Pennsylvania (27 electoral votes); North Dakota (3 electoral votes); South Dakota (4 electoral votes); Nebraska (5 electoral votes) and Connecticut (8 electoral votes) will all go to Governor Ronald Reagan, giving him 163 electoral votes overall. He is just 107 votes away from reaching the necessary 270 mark of electoral votes to winning the Presidency."


Former Governor Ronald Reagan (R-CA)/Former CIA Director George HW Bush (R-TX): 163 Electoral Votes
Vice President Jimmy Carter (D-GA)/Former US Secretary of State Walter Mondale (D-MN): 55 Electoral Votes
Polls Not Closed: 398
Ted Koppel: "Frank, the ABC News Decision Desk has gotten confirmation that Missouri and its 12 electoral votes will go to Vice President Jimmy Carter, giving him 55 electoral votes overall. In the Show Me State, there's a hotly contested US Senate race and gubernatorial race as well. In the Missouri US Senate race, incumbent United States Senator Thomas Eagleton, who was briefly the Democratic nominee for Vice President in 1972 before controversial records of his health forced him to drop out, is up for reelection to a third term against Saint Louis County Executive Gene McNaray. And over in the battle for the Missouri Governorship: incumbent Democratic Governor Joseph Teasdale is facing off against his Republican opponent, former Governor Christopher Bond in a rematch from their 1976 matchup, where Teasdale defeated Bond that year. Keep in mind that ABC News will also bring you coverage in the Gubernatorial elections as well."
Last edited:

Users who are viewing this thread