2018 Presidential Election

I've been following this thread for a few months and as a huge fan of The West Wing, I cannot express how much I appreciate all the attention to detail and the sheer longevity of this and the previous thread. My only question is why is this universe's George Bush different from OTL? (I made an account just to ask this since I couldn't find an answer as I combed the threads.)
First of all thank you for the kind words.
As regards George P. Bush and George H.W. Bush we just wanted something that was slightly different to link a Reagan Presidency to President's Newman and Lassister. and the change in Presidential election years, which the show never addressed. Having a slightly different version of "George Bush" allowed us to do this.
 
I had thought maybe you wanted all the major players to be portrayed by IRL actors, and having Reagan be POD worked out since he was an actor. Hahaha. I just found it strange since H.W. really was VP at the time. By the way, if you ever wanted to do a prequel thread I'd be more than happy to contribute. Keep up the good work!
 
I had thought maybe you wanted all the major players to be portrayed by IRL actors, and having Reagan be POD worked out since he was an actor. Hahaha. I just found it strange since H.W. really was VP at the time. By the way, if you ever wanted to do a prequel thread I'd be more than happy to contribute. Keep up the good work!
Your idea about Reagan is very good but I had never thought about it that way. Once we used Reagan having a stroke as the POD for the election year change, we just didn't want the "real George Bush" as the acting President, as it would have been such a big change for a "real life character", so we slightly changed it.
 
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Haven't done one of these in a while. Some assorted infoboxes:


Cast
Terry O'Quinn as Nicholas Alexander
Tom Bower as Ed Barrie
Ralph Fiennes as Gerald Lacy
Nadim Sawalha as Ben Sawahili
Whoopie Goldberg as Sarah Masombuka

  • Most of Alexander's bio was helpfully done here. The only thing I didn't adopt is him being Army CoS, because of the guy whose infobox is next to his.
  • Barrie was mentioned as being the Army's Chief of Staff when he appeared in the show. Since the CoS serves four-year terms, and Barrie retired in 2000, he had to have started in 1996 under Lassiter. His commands were also back-engineered from his line in the show where he rants at C.J. (who called him a "coward" for publicly criticizing the administration's defense policies while about to retire) that he ordered men into combat into Vietnam, Grenada, Haiti and Iraqi-occupied Kuwait.

    The numerous links to the Army Distinguished Service Medal (the called the "Distinguished Combat Service Medal" in the show) is a nod to the controversy that came about that he wore a medal that he was not entitled to wear (notice in the show that Barrie doesn't deny CJ's assertion when she accuses him of it and instead tries to deflect by talking about how Bartlet himself never served in the military). The thread, for some reason, had Barrie handle this as well as possible when it came up in 2015 and turn it largely into a "he said, she said" with CJ instead of something that is actually very easy to prove since you can use the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to look up military veterans' award eligibility, plus of course, there would have been actual records of whether the ship he won the award for his service aboard was actually fired upon or in contact with the enemy when Barrie was serving aboard.

    I filled in quite a bit of biographical data, the most important being his age. Barrie's date of birth fluctuated slightly according to whomever was writing it; I'm establishing him as being born in 1940 because it fits the most recent time his age was mentioned (when he denied interest in running for the late James Lancaster's Senate seat). His LG is a composite of the two running mates OTL former KY governor Matt Bevin ran with in 2015 and 2019 (Janean Hampton & Ralph Alvarado).
  • Lacy's biography was done here and I've only added a few small details (like his exact date of becoming a deacon, priest and then bishop in the Church of England and who was the priest who performed all three ceremonies). His coat of arms is the same as the current OTL Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby.

    IOTL the Church of England seems to considers bishops as holding office from the day they are elected, but since Lacy was mentioned as the "incoming Archbishop of Canterbury" mere days before his enthronement ceremony, I'm going to say that ITTL the CoE doesn't consider bishops to have taken office until their enthronment/installation.
  • Sawahili was originally "Ben Sawahii", but I've written his surname by the former so often that I'm going to stick with it, since he's going to be president only for another year and a half (the office has a two-term limit and he was reelected in 2016 off-screen).

    His bio was inspired by that of his actor (down to being born in Jordan), so I took that and ran with it. Since Sawahili is clearly an Arab Christian, my headcanon is that his real name is "Binyamin", but he goes by "Ben" because it helped him assimilate during the time when (western) Jerusalem was Israeli ITTL. The notation after "Office established" links to an explanation that Jerusalem was governed by a three-member Provisional Governing Council, consisting of former South African president Frederick Hymans, former British PM Ricky Meyer and former New Zealand premier Graham West for six months before his inauguration.
  • Of course I had to fit Whoopi Goldberg (aka Guinan) in somewhere, and given the opportunity with the Equatorial Kundu storyline, I figured it was a perfect place to drop her in. Her biographical details (including an education in the United States and a brief marriage to the man whose last name she continues to use) were borrowed from former OTL Liberian president Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

    It's not mentioned in the infobox, but Masombuka is a Baptist pastor (Virginia Union University was formed from the merger of two Baptist religious universities).
 
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Excellent work @lord caedus. My two points would be issue would be I don't think there would be a three month gap between Lacy's election and installation. I could see December at a push but three months seems a bit extreme. In addition Simmons was his predecessor as Bishop of Bath and Wells but wouldn't do the consecration. That would have been the then Archbishop of Canterbury Thomas Glover.
 
Excellent work @lord caedus. My two points would be issue would be I don't think there would be a three month gap between Lacy's election and installation. I could see December at a push but three months seems a bit extreme. In addition Simmons was his predecessor as Bishop of Bath and Wells but wouldn't do the consecration. That would have been the then Archbishop of Canterbury Thomas Glover.
OOC: Ah. Turns out I misunderstood that the "election" is separate from the announcement of who the next archbishop will be.

I've changed the date of Lacy's election to a week after Beaufort's resignation took effect (last day of 2014), so instead of having a long gap between election and enthronement, it will be a pretty short one. I've also had to add a new point in the "notes" section on Lacy because it seems that the current OTL Archbishop is deemed to have taken office at the date of his election, and it's pretty clear from the stories written about Lacy's enthronement that ITTL he wasn't considered the Archbishop of Canterbury until his enthronement ceremony.

Changed Glover to be the one to do Lacy's consecration.
 
I have a blitheringly stupid question, Do most of the same team owners, own their respective sports franchise? Like I know the VP's family owns the Twins. But does a Steinbrenner own the Yankees?
 
Probably for any sports team which hasn’t changed ownership since 1986. Maybe a Mark Cuban type instead of Mark Cuban, or that Computer guy that went to Bartlet for a contract to save his company after that recall, might have bought the Clippers, but I suspect like 90% of all major league teams have the same owners as OTL
 
Probably for any sports team which hasn’t changed ownership since 1986. Maybe a Mark Cuban type instead of Mark Cuban, or that Computer guy that went to Bartlet for a contract to save his company after that recall, might have bought the Clippers, but I suspect like 90% of all major league teams have the same owners as OTL
That's what I figured. I just figured sometimes a very dumb question had to be asked.
 


Tuesday, July 14th, 2020

White House narrows Supreme Court list to three

A source familiar with deliberations within the White House have said that President Sam Seaborn has narrowed his for a nominee to the Supreme Court to three possibilities: US district court judge Olivia Emmett Franklin and circuit court judges Keisha Kersey Howard and Ronald Lin.

The president reportedly had interviews with all three candidates this past week, and will announce his decision soon. Franklin, Howard, and Lin were also interviewed by White House Chief of Staff Will Bailey and former Solicitor General Ainsley Hayes, who has been asked by the president to help in the selection process. Hayes, a close friend of the president despite their political disagreements, had previously been mistakenly reported as a candidate for the nomination.

Seaborn is seeking to replace outgoing Associate Justice Rachel Carmine, who announced her retirement on July 6th. Carmine, appointed in 1998 by President Owen Lassiter, is the most moderate of the three liberals on the Court. As part of his campaign pledge to help bring the demographics of the federal judiciary more in line with an increasingly diverse nation, the president's shortlist of six potential nominees had zero white men on the list; Franklin and Howard are both African-American women while Lin is an Asian-American man.

With the Senate due to adjourn for its August recess on July 31, it is likely that the president's nominee will be a topic of discussion for senators as they head home to meet with their constituents. White House sources say a decision on the nominee is expected to be announced as early as Thursday.
 
OOC: While I appreciate the thought behind it, next time please just PM me if you notice any errors in a wikibox. You've largely just posted screenshots of the individual infoboxes from that set, with what looks like your cell phone (some of them I can't find anything you actually changed anything) and way exceeded the forum's three image per day per thread rule.

I'd also say that if you do feel the need to make an infobox of your own, please do it yourself (here's a tutorial) instead of just writing over someone else's. It looks a lot better and is more respectful of the person who made the original box.

This did give me a reason to add the 2018 election to the set of presidential elections and fix a few things I noticed in your edits.

 


Thursday, July 16th, 2020

President Seaborn nominates Olivia Emmett Franklin to the Supreme Court

President Sam Seaborn has nominated Chief Judge Olivia Emmett Franklin of the U.S. District Court of South Carolina to become the nation's 116th Supreme Court justice. Speaking at a Rose Garden ceremony with Chief Judge Franklin and her family, the president spoke of Franklin's decades of experience on the federal bench, and her "unwavering strength and breadth of perspective that will be a welcome addition to the Supreme Court."

Franklin only spoke briefly to thank the president for what she called a "humbling honor" to be nominated to the Court. She thanked her family, including her husband and two sons, and paid special tribute to her parents, including her late father.

"My parents worked themselves to the bone in grueling, physically demanding jobs so that their children could have the educational opportunities that were denied to them as young people in the Jim Crow South," Franklin said. "I'm so grateful to be able to stand here with my family, accepting a nomination from the President of the United States to the nation's highest court, but I'm also saddened that my father James Emmett [who passed away from cancer in 2015] was not able to see it."

Franklin had been nominated to the U.S. District Court of South Carolina by President Josiah Bartlet in 2003 and became Chief Judge of the court last year when her predecessor, Malcolm Barnwell, retired. She graduated from Harvard Law School in 1992 and worked for various advocacy groups, most notably the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People), before being named to the bench. If confirmed, she will be only the third African-American justice in the Court's history as well as the first non-white female justice.

Franklin has been nominated to replace Associate Justice Rachel Carmine, who is leaving the Court at the end of July. Insiders say that Franklin's "incredible work ethic" and "moral commitment to justice" were the main factors in Seaborn's decision to name her over two other judges, Keisha Kersey Howard and Ronald Lin, that were on his shortlist. Unlike the other two, Franklin has maintained a relatively low profile among court watchers and is not well-known in legal circles for her rulings or legal writing.

Reactions to Franklin's nomination have been positive among Democrats, with Senate Minority Leader Jimmy Fitzsimmons (D-MA) calling Franklin an "inspired choice to be the nation's next Supreme Court justice", and Senator Sam McCord (D-SC) calling her selection "historic for both the nation and the people of South Carolina." Republicans have so far been largely silent, although pro-life organizations were quick to denounce Franklin as a "liberal extremist" and "an activist judge who uses her own political philosophy to guide her decisions, rather than the Constitution" upon the announcement. Senator Dylan McNamara (R-MS), chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said that he looked forward to meeting with Franklin before the Senate returns from its August recess and offered no further comment on Franklin's nomination or her track record.
 
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OOC: While I appreciate the thought behind it, next time please just PM me if you notice any errors in a wikibox. You've largely just posted screenshots of the individual infoboxes from that set, with what looks like your cell phone (some of them I can't find anything you actually changed anything) and way exceeded the forum's three image per day per thread rule.

I'd also say that if you do feel the need to make an infobox of your own, please do it yourself (here's a tutorial) instead of just writing over someone else's. It looks a lot better and is more respectful of the person who made the original box.

This did give me a reason to add the 2018 election to the set of presidential elections and fix a few things I noticed in your edits.

Thanks for the wikiboxes
 


Saturday, July 18th, 2020

Long-time Representative Arthur Carney dead at 89

Representative Arthur Carney (D-OR), the longest-serving member of the House of Representatives in history, passed away late last night in his Forest Grove, Oregon home at the age of 89. An ambulance was dispatched to Carney's residence at approximately 10:15 PM local time after the congressman collapsed and hit his head on a table. He was declared dead by responding paramedics, with an autopsy pending to determine whether Carney died as a result of blunt force trauma from hitting the table or was instantly killed by what appears to be a massive cerebral hemorrhage he suffered that caused him to collapse.

Carney was running for a record 27th term in Congress to represent Oregon's 1st congressional district that includes most of northwest Oregon. An unabashed New Deal-style liberal, Carney's durability and strong advocacy for both organized labor and tough business regulations had made him a bête noire for generations of Oregon conservatives. His seniority and knowledge of House procedure gave him outsize power as Chair of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, which he had chaired since the Democrats returned to the majority after the 2006 election.

Born in 1930 to poor parents in Everett, Washington, Carney joined the United States Air Force immediately after graduating high school in 1948. After leaving the Air Force in 1951, Carney used his G.I. Bill education benefits to attend the University of Oregon, where he eventually earned a law degree. After practicing law in Forest Grove and other areas of Washington County, Oregon, Carney was recruited to run against incumbent congressman Wendell Wyatt (R) in 1968. Running a fierce campaign, Carney pulled off a narrow upset over Wyatt despite the latter's incumbency and Richard Nixon's victory in the state. After two difficult challenges in both 1970 and 1972 (which saw Wyatt nearly retake the seat during Nixon's landslide defeat of Democratic candidate George McGovern), Carney's popularity in the district made subsequent contests increasingly pro forma, with Republicans not even bothering to nominate candidates against him on three occasions between 1990 and 2006.

Having been a member of "the people's house" for 51 years and 6 months, Carney has set or broken numerous records. He is the longest-serving representative in history, and is behind only legendary former senators Carl Hayden (D-AZ) and Joseph Furman (R-SC) in the list of total time served in Congress. Since the retirement of former congressman Harry Wade (D-CA) in 2018, Carney was the last remaining member of Congress to have held office in the 1960s as well as the last member of Congress to serve while Lyndon B. Johnson was president. Carney held office under 11 different presidents (from Johnson to Sam Seaborn) and was known to have met both Franklin D. Roosevelt and John F. Kennedymeaning that he encountered an astonishing 13 presidents in his lifetime, over one-quarter of all the presidents in American history. In his role as Dean of the House, Carney will be succeeded by Representative Thom Grunder (D-MN), who first took office in 1973.

Known on Capitol Hill as a devoted grandfather and great-grandfather, Carney is survived by his second wife Anne Carney, his four children (all by his late first wife Marjorie), 11 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. Per party rules, the Oregon Democratic Party will nominate a candidate to replace him on the ballot at a special convention. Governor Walter Collins (R) is expected, per Oregon law, to announce a special election for the remainder of Carney's final term to take place alongside the election to represent the district for a new term. House Democrats similarly will meet to vote on his successor as chair of the Energy and Commerce committee at a special party caucus.
 
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Saturday July 18th 2020
The "Duke" is back; Former Senator Alan Duke eyeing Presidential run

Former Republican Senator, Alan Duke (Oklahoma) looks to be eyeing up a presidential run. Duke whom famously lost his Senate seat back in 2014 to Bradley Denning as a series of campaign gaffs cost him, and he went down to a 12 point defeat.

Duke this weekend travels to Iowa, to campaign for incumbent Senator Joe Joeckler who is locked in a tight race with former Senator Rod Kasey. On Friday, Duke is understood to have had a "working lunch" with former Kansas Governor Peter Gault, himself now running for the Senate. Duke believes that he was "thrown under a bus" by the party establishment back in 2014 and as a result no longer speaks to former close friend, RNC Chairman Jeff Haffley. Duke has a base of support in the grassroots of the party, and could use that support much as Gault did in 2018.
 
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Over the past week, I have been working on a nice spreadsheet regarding the Presidential Elections since the change in the Presidential Election year in 1986. It isn't ready yet for publication, but here is a fun fact taster.
From 1986 no state has voted for the winner every time, but four states have only got it wrong once over the course of those nine elections. They are:
  1. Minnesota voted for Newman in 1990 (Lassiter won)
  2. Missouri voted for Shallick in 2018 (Seaborn won)
  3. New Jersey voted for Fitzsimmons in 2014 (Walken won)
  4. Pennsylvania voted for Santos in 2010 (Walken won)
 


Saturday, 18 July 2020

German voters about to elect "the most fractured parliament since the Weimar Republic"

With the elections to the Bundestag (lower house of the national parliament) tomorrow, German pollsters are predicting that the country is about to elect "the most fractured parliament since the Weimar Republic", according to one expert.

Polls have been indicating that Chancellor Alex Baumann's SPD (Social Democratic Party) is in a dead heat with the centre-right CDU/CSU (Christian Democratic Union and Christian Social Union) coalition led by CDU leader Christian Hölling to be the biggest party in the next Bundestag. But two other parties are expecting to make large gains from their 2016 performance, largely on the backs of younger voters: the Greens and the populist right-wing DB (German Movement). German polling firms have seen a rise in support for the Greens, who are averaging nearly 16% in nationwide opinion polls, among younger voters who are disenchanted with what they see as the Baumann government's lack of leadership on climate issues.

"My generation doesn't have time when it comes to tackling climate change," Annalise Weber, a college student at the University of Dresden, told Der Spiegel. "We have to act quickly and the government has been too slow to do what will need to be done [on climate change]."

The rise in DB support from its 2016 total of eight percent of the vote to its current standing of 14% has been attributed to discontent among some German voters towards the increase in immigration from Muslim-majority nations such as Turkey as well as other European Union member-states. Although the DB's top list candidate Franziska Weide has said that the party "is focused on protecting the heritage and culture of Germany...not denigrating other cultures or ways of life", several prominent party members have ties to anti-Islamic, nationalist and far-right organizations that have been investigated or placed under surveillance by the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (which monitors perceived threats to the democratic order in Germany).

Germany uses a system of proportional representation to elect members of the Bundestag. There will be at least 598 members, but more canand likely willbe added to prevent parties from winning a disproportionate amount of seats compared to what their number of party votes entitles them. This is due to the 299 members that will be elected to represent individual constituencies by the same method MPs are elected in the United Kingdom while a similar number are allocated via state party-lists. A party must win either three constituency seats or five percent of the national vote in order to be eligible for party-list seats.

It is likely that over one-quarter of seats in the Bundestag will be won by the two parties under a cordon sanitaire: DB and The Left, a left/far-left party descended from the former ruling party of East Germany (SED, or the Socialist Unity Party). This result, most experts say, would complicate coalition negotiations and possibly lead to early elections. The liberal FDP (Free Democratic Party) is also polling above the national threshold, and is expected to get roughly eight percent, meaning seven parties (including the CSU which only runs candidates in the state of Bavaria) are expected to hold seats in the next Bundestag.
 
To paraphrase President Bartlet (talking about Cricket)
"I am an educated man, but, when someone tries to explain the rules of the German electoral system to me, I want to hit them on the head with a teapot" :) :) :)
 
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