White text and a white illustration of the state of Illinois on a dark blue background
WISCONSIN DEMOCRATS FOR CHANGE IN 1980, LOUISE UPHOFF, TREAS. MADISON, WISCONSIN
Edward Moore “Ted” Kennedy (1932-2009), Massachusetts Senator and part of the famous Kennedy clan, ran against incumbent Jimmy Carter in the 1980 Presidential Primary for the Democratic ticket. Kennedy was encouraged to run against Carter due to the President’s extremely poor approval rating as a result of the ongoing energy crisis and the Iran hostage situation. To date, this was the last primary in which an incumbent lost electoral states to another candidate in a presidential primary. Although Kennedy won 12 states, he lost in Wisconsin, with 56.17% of votes going to Carter and Kennedy receiving 30.10%. The victories were not enough to secure the nomination, and Carter went on to represent the Democratic Party. Kennedy returned to his post as Senator, where he served out a 47 year term as the Senator from Massachusetts.