It’s been 40 years since Louisiana voters opted for a presidential candidate who did not win the overall national election. In last night’s election, Louisiana was one of 22 states whose voters opted for Republican John McCain rather than Democrat Barack Obama, now the president-elect. Perhaps a sign that Louisiana has been turning increasingly red, the state gave McCain a strong showing, with 58.6 percent of the vote and a 366,622 edge over Obama. Only Oklahoma, Texas, Alabama, and Tennessee had higher margins for McCain.

The last time Louisiana supported the loser in the presidential race was 1968, when the state went for Alabama Gov. and third-party candidate George Wallace. Louisiana also was among states supporting the failed bid of Republican candidate Barry Goldwater, who lost in a landslide to Lyndon Johnson in 1964. From 1968 to this year, Louisiana supported the winning presidential candidate in nine straight elections.

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