Recap of the Popular Vote
The general election was held on 11/5/1996. Democratic Presidential Electors were victorious in 31 states and DC, winning 379 votes. Republican Electors carried 19 states with 159 votes.
Casting the Electoral Vote
The Presidential Electors assembled in their state capitol buildings on 12/16/1996 to cast the electoral votes. Following the filling of vacancies, each Elector voted as expected. In Pennsylvania, Gov. Tom Ridge, a Republican, told the Commonwealth's Democratic Electors that he gave them "one last chance" to change their minds and vote Republican, but they declined. In each state and in DC, the Electors signed five official certificates of vote, one of which was sent by certified mail to the office of the Vice President of the United States. These certificates were placed in the special mahogany boxes used every four years to collect the certificates of vote for the joint session of Congress.
The Joint Session of Congress
Congress assembled in joint session to count the electoral votes on 1/9/1997. VP Gore and the U.S. Senators arrived in the U.S. House chamber at 1:00 p.m., and the joint session lasted 24 minutes. Officers of the joint session are those shown in the table.
VP Gore announced at the beginning that the entire text of eac