For God, Crown, and Country: The Commonwealth of America.

Chapter XX: First in the Hearts of his Countrymen.
The death of Benjamin Franklin was a devastating event which brought the entire Commonwealth into mourning; hailed as the Father of Confederation, Doctor Franklin's funeral was a massive affair which drew thousands onto the streets of Philadelphia. His demise came quickly, though word of his failing health had been subject to whispers and gossip throughout his duration in office. Through the throes of old age, he steered the Commonwealth through war and peace,setting precedents that would endure as part of the nation's constitutional traditions. Suffering from pleurisy in his final days, the Prime Minister's end came quickly, stating "a dying man can do nothing easy" before taking his final parting breath. News spread quickly across Philadelphia as crowds gathered outside Franklin's home, with the devastating developments making it's way across the country as post riders heralded the news. The business of government paused in honor of Franklin, who was accorded the first state funeral in American history, and in a moving eulogy, Joseph Galloway - the leader of the opposition - praised Franklin as being "first in the hearts of his countrymen" in a speech which was widely reprinted across the country.

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The funeral procession of Benjamin Franklin.
What followed Franklin's funeral was a political knife fight that threatened to fracture the Whigs. Both John Adams and Thomas Jefferson each commanded a strong presence within the caucus, with many, including War Minister George Washington, finding themselves in the middle of both camps. Though many of the parliament's leading voices entertained greater political ambitions, only Adams and Jefferson had the support to be able to lead a viable government. It was apparent, regardless who came out ahead, that an election would have to be held in accordance with the constitution. The death of Franklin before the expiration of parliament's mandate set the stage for the first true leadership election in American history.

Just ten days after Franklin's passing at age 84 on April 27th, 1790, the parliament reconvened at the request of the Governor-General to reach a consensus over the late Prime Minister's successor. Adams saw an opportunity in the opposition, knowing that he had a plurality of Whig aligned MPs, and reached out to Galloway and his Tories for support. Though the Tory faction was less inclined to support Adams, the radical strain of ideology that Jefferson represented ensured there was no other clear choice. Thomas Pickney, a Tory MP and officer in the Royal American Army, proposed Alexander Hamilton while James Monroe, also an MP, nominated his fellow Virginian James Madison. Yet these proposals required the careful construction of a bipartisan coalition government that would follow in Franklin's footsteps, which was implausible to the diverse nature of the two factions. In accordance with the longstanding parliamentary traditions of London, the Governor-General quickly decided to intervene and establish a precedent for future vacancies, ensuring that the legislature did not have complete autonomy over such appointments.

After summoning Adams to his mansion on Market Street, the Governor-General instructed the Foreign Minister to form a government. Though both Adams and Galloway were weary of sharing power, knowing that such a coalition would surely energize the Jefferson wing of the Whigs, they both also shared a common vision of further integration within the Empire. They also shared as a mutual distaste for what they perceived to be the dangers of political radicalism, which they felt was a threat to the traditional order and values of English society. As a result, a new government emerged, though it's future was unclear as the parliament's mandate neared expiration. A vote of confidence passed 80-65, allowing Adams and his Ministry to assume office for the remaining duration of the first Parliament's original mandate. The new government retained several figures from the Franklin Ministry; Hamilton was to remain Finance Minister, though Adams was keen to change this in the aftermath of the impending election. Washington and Madison too were retained, with the apolitical Washington desiring to reaffirm American control over Louisiana, conquered from Spain during the Colombian War. Madison, on the other hand, stayed with the internal desire to act as a bulwark against Adams's perceived indifference to the rights of provincial legislatures and the constitution.


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The polarization of the American public was as bad as it had been in fifteen years, with memories of the ill fated American revolt still fresh in the minds of many. The decision by the Duke of York and Albany to use his position as Governor-General to cobble together a Tory supported government led to a torrent of outrage. As Governor-General, the Duke had never been particularly popular, and he had become increasingly bored in the role, desiring a return to his previous and more luxurious life. In a letter addressed to and read publicly before parliament, the Duke announced his intention to resign from his position upon the formation of a government. His resignation would lead the Lt. Governor, the Earl of Cornwallis, to succeed him until the King named a replacement; Cornwallis would ultimately receive this appointment after a brief period as the interim acting Governor-General. The resignation came just five days after the House passed the a motion of confidence.
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The resignation of the Duke was followed by Cornwallis dropping writs of election, sparking the 1790 American Federal Election...
 
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We had our own scare with Hanna last week--BTW, at least this isn't a major hurricane; I'd hate to have to deal with Covid-19 and a major hurricane, knock on wood...
 
i am surprised washington didnt end up as a unity candidate IOTL he was very charismatic amd respected even before the war and basically got the job of commander in chief just by talking to as many congressmen as possible.
 
i am surprised washington didnt end up as a unity candidate IOTL he was very charismatic amd respected even before the war and basically got the job of commander in chief just by talking to as many congressmen as possible.
Washington was not particularly charismatic, actually. An inspiring and beloved figure, but not necessarily a powerful orator.
 
So my laptop problem should be fixed next week. In the meantime, I'm considering some minor retcons. Mainly adjusting the cabinet offices and the establishment of a privy council.
 
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This is my take on the 1790 federal election. Joseph Galloway's Tories receive a massive boost due to Galloway's "first in the hearts of his countrymen" speech. The election results in a hung parliament. The national unity government is maintained, but Galloway is appointed Prime Minister.
 
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This is my take on the 1790 federal election. Joseph Galloway's Tories receive a massive boost due to Galloway's "first in the hearts of his countrymen" speech. The election results in a hung parliament. The national unity government is maintained, but Galloway is appointed Prime Minister.
I'm still not able to update this until this weekend (most likely - there is a chance I might get the part in and put on the laptop as early as today since they said mid-week), but I absolutely love the infobox! Thanks for sharing!
 
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