Presidential Election Concession Speeches and Messages

These statements demonstrate a tradition in American politics of almost immediate concession of defeat by the losing candidate in presidential contests.  These remarks and messages have typically included congratulations to the winner, acknowledgement of the workings of democracy, and pledging to work for common solutions to problems in the future.  The practice has been observed whether the margin of victory was extremely narrow or quite large and whether the campaign was bruising or more gentle.

We at the APP plan to fill out this collection of interesting documents to be as inclusive as possible.

  Losing Candidate Concession Date Election Date
2020 Donald Trump TBD November 3
2016 Hillary Clinton November 9 - 11:40 am ET November 8
2012 Mitt Romney November 7 - 12:55 am ET November 6
2008 John McCain November 4 - 11:18 pm ET November 4
2004 John Kerry November 3 November 2
2000 Albert Gore, Jr. December 13 November 7
1996 Robert Dole November 5 - 11:25 pm ET November 5
1992 George Bush November 3 - 10:20 pm ET November 3
1988 Michael Dukakis November 8 - 11:16 pm ET November 8
1984 Walter F. Mondale November 6 November 6
1980 Jimmy Carter November 4 - 9:54 pm ET November 4
1976 Gerald Ford November 3 - 12:14 pm ET November 2
1972 George McGovern November 7 November 7
1968 Hubert H. Humphrey November 6 November 5
1964 Barry Goldwater November 4 November 3
1960 Richard Nixon November 9 - 3:15 am ET November 8
1956 Adlai Stevenson November 7 - 1:20 am ET November 6
1952 Adlai Stevenson November 5 November 4
1948 Thomas Dewey November 3 November 2
1944 Thomas Dewey November 8 - 3:12 am ET November 7
1940 Wendell Willkie November 6 November 5
1936 Alf Landon November 4 - 1:34 am ET November 3
1932 Herbert Hoover November 8 November 8
1928 Al Smith November 7 November 6
1924 John W. Davis November 5 November 4
Robert La Follette
1920 James M. Cox November 3 November 2
1916 Charles E. Hughes November 22 - 8:25 pm ET November 7
1912 William Howard Taft November 5 - 11:00 pm ET November 5
Theodore Roosevelt November 5 - 11:45 pm ET
1908 William Jennings Bryan November 5 November 3
1904 Alton B. Parker November 8 - 8:30 pm ET November 8
1900 William Jennings Bryan November 8 - 12:00 pm ET November 6
1896 William Jennings Bryan November 5 November 3

Citation: "Presidential Election Concession Speeches and Messages." The American Presidency Project. Ed. Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley. Santa Barbara, CA: University of California. 1999-2021. https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/345910