In November 2012, Libertarian nominees for U.S. House polled 1.14% of all the votes cast for U.S. House in the nation. This was the fifth time the Libertarian Party had met the 1% standard. The other times were 1998, 2000, 2002, and 2010.
The 2012 outcome is surprising, because no Libertarians appeared on the California ballot for U.S. House in California, which in the past had always been the state that contributed more votes for U.S. House to the Libertarian column than any other (except that in 2008 and 2010, Texas contributed more Libertarian votes). In November 2012, the California top-two law prevented any Californian from voting for any minor party members for Congress.
Other nationally-organized parties, besides the Democratic Party and the Republican Party, that polled at least 1% of the national U.S. House vote in the 20th century and this century are the Progressive Party in 1948; the Socialist Party 1902-1924 and also 1930-1932; the Farmer-Labor Party 1920-1924; the Progressive Party 1912-1914; the Prohibition Party 1900-1916; and the People’s Party 1900.
If the Libertarian Party had polled as much as 1% for President in 2012, it could say that it is the first third party since 1932 to have polled 1% for President, U.S. Senate, and U.S. House, all in the same election. However, Gary Johnson polled .99%. He would have exceeded 1% if he had been on the ballot in either Oklahoma or Michigan.
For U.S. Senate in 2012, Libertarian nominees polled 1.06%.
The calculations relating to this blog post exclude scattering (miscellaneous) write-in votes, because it is generally impossible and also relatively meaningless to classify them into any political party’s column, or into the “independent candidate” column either. However, even if these write-ins were included in the total vote cast, that would scarcely affect the calculations.