Every presidential election, Family Circle magazine hosts a cookie contest between the two potential first ladies. And this bake-off isn’t just a quaint exercise in to prove a prospective First Lady’s homemaker bona fides: the magazine has correctly predicted the results of four out of five elections. This year’s winner? Michelle Obama.
Obama and Ann Romney both submitted recipes to the magazine; more than 9,000 people weighed in and the results were a squeaker. “Just 287 votes separated the two women, our smallest margin ever,” Family Circle reports. Romney’s M&M cookies got 48.5 percent of votes, while Obama’s white and dark chocolate chip cookies won with 51.5 percent.
(TASTE TEST: TIME tries out Michelle Obama and Ann Romney’s cookies)
The magazine has hosted a contest every election since 1992, when Hillary Clinton and Barbara Bush faced off. The only year that Family Circle‘s bake off failed to predict the winner was when Cindy McCain’s oatmeal-butterscotch cookies bested Obama’s recipe for lemon and orange shortbread cookies in 2008. However, rumors swirled that McCain had cheated by copying a recipe off of a Hershey’s box.