North Carolina saw a huge surge in write-in votes in 2016 as thousands of voters chose to write-in a candidate on Election Day rather than voting for any of the Presidential candidates actually on the ballot.
While 69% of registered voters in the state turned out to vote,1.26% of votes cast in North Carolina were for write-in options. 5-times as many 2016 voters chose alternative options than did so in 2012. The rate of write-in votes in 2016 was also 4-times higher than 2008.
The different choices voters made were abundant, as in Wake County alone voters chose 1,253 different names or phrases to write-in.
Among the actual candidates who ran for President but were not on the ballot in North Carolina, Independent candidate Evan McMullin was the top vote getter, receiving 1,839 votes in Wake County. After McMullin was Green Party candidate Jill Stein with 1,740 and Socialist Bernie Sanders with 1,148.
Republicans who lost the nomination to Donald Trump were also selected, but it was John Kasich who led the way with 603 votes. Senator Rand Paul received 41 votes.
Here are some highlights from Wake County’s hilariously awesome write-in votes:
- Jesus received 122 votes and God pulled in another 15.
- Batman, Bugs Bunny, Donald Duck, Snoopy, Winnie-the-Pooh, Superman and Captain America all received votes, but Micky Mouse remains the cartoon character of choice as 43 voters chose to go with the mouse.
- Deceased Presidents were a popular choice amongst voters with George Washington, John Adams, Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson receiving votes.
- Living Presidents George W. Bush (1), Jimmy Carter (2) and Barack Obama (9) were also choices voters made.
- President Ronald Reagan was the most popular former President voters wrote-in. He received 12 votes total.
- Chuck Norris, Lady Gaga, Tom Hanks, Tom Cruise, Jerry Garcia, Bruce Springsteen and LeBron James all received a vote, but it was Bill Murray who topped the celebrity list with 5 total votes.
- Random names such as Chuck Smith, Erik Dixon, Gary Watkins, “Meatballs and Pug” and “Limberbutt McCubbins” all received votes.
- One voter even chose to go with “Sweet Meteor O’Death” over all the choices available.