People from different ethnic groups for POTUS

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by David T, Apr 15, 2019.

  1. Anarch King of Dipsodes Overlord of All Thirst

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    Alt-Jackpot: Old Guard Illinois Republicans fail to drive Peter Fitzgerald into retiring in 2004. He wins re-election against Obama, who remains an obscure state legislator, despite his moment in the spotlight at the 2004 DNC. Hillary Clinton is elected President in 2008. (No discussion of Clinton's (IMO) disastrous Presidency, which somehow extends to two terms.)

    Meanwhile: Tiger Woods suffers a disabling injury during a booze-and-bimbos bender circa 2008. It's a wake-up call. He cleans up his act, finds Jesus, reconciles with his wife, and rehabs to a comeback in 2011. He wins two majors that year, but then his injury comes back and he retires. He also "comes out" as a Republican, stumping hard for Rep Connie Mack in the 2012 race against Senator Ben Nelson. Mack loses, and some people even suggest Woods should have been the candidate. In August 2013, Nelson has a health crisis and has to resign; Governor Scott appoints Woods to the vacancy. Woods wins the special election in 2014 to finish the term.

    In 2016, some scandal privately derails Trump's candidacy at the last minute before the convention. (Trump withdraws "for health reasons".) The convention looks for a replacement - but all of the former competitors are excludes as losers, and unacceptable to the Trumpists. Trump himself suggests Woods, who is a personal friend, even though Woods didn't endorse him. (It's also a big middle finger to the GOP Old Guard.) The convention agrees.

    Woods is elected, becoming the first black, Thai, Chinese, and American Indian President.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2019
  2. CalBear Your Ursus arctos californicus Moderator Moderator Donor

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    Let me say this as clearly as possible

    Do not, now, or in the future, drag this sort of political BS into any non-Chat thread again.

    If you do, you will not like the result.
     
  3. Derek Jackson Member

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    In many ways African American describes Obama better than most folk with that label
     
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  4. Byzantion Well-Known Member

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    What if it is an Afghan President ? Like Pashtun or Dari speaking. Or Iranian.
     
  5. Thomas Jefferson Well-Known Member

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    According to Wikipedia, Representative Anna Eshoo has some level of Iranian/Assyrian ancestry. Cyrus Habib, the Lieutenant Govenor of Washington, was born in the US to Iranian parents but would have been barely old enough to run in 2016. Alan Khazei co-founded the nonprofit CityYear and ran for Senate from Massachusetts in 2010 and 2012. An earlier potential candidate is John J. Nimrod, an Assyrian-American state senator from Illinois in the 1970s and early 1980s who distinguished himself by his activism on behalf of Assyrians and various other oppressed ethnic groups. If he'd managed to get elected statewide he could have been a Republican candidate in 1980.

    I think the timing of immigration means that you're going to have a hard time finding an Afghan-American Candidate who meets both the age and birthplace requirements to be President. For example, Zalmay Khalilzad is probably the most prominent Afghan-American in politics, but he was born in Afghanistan.
     
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  6. AltHistoryNerd Now 99% Jovian Flying Fox Free

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    Simple. He's Kenyan-American.

    African Americans are black USAmericans whose ancestors were the decedents of American slaves. They're given the catch all term "African-American" because they can't trace what part of Africa their ancestors are from (Much like me).

    He's Kenyan-American, because he knows where his ancestors' family is from (Kenya), and he was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, USA, and maintained citizenship in the US as a Kenyan-American.

    The African-American experience is much different than the black experience of other black ethnicities (Caribbean-Americans, Nigerian-Americans, Black-Latino Americans, etc). They never had to face Jim Crow and all the other horrible things that happened to African Americans. (That's because they simply weren't allowed in the country before the immigration bill of 1965).

    BHO never had to deal with the generational trauma that Oprah and other African-Americans had to deal with. It's relevant because an African-American president would have the African-American experience. I'm not African-American, but I grew up in a neighborhood with a strong African American presence. I heard stories of my neighbors driving through sundown towns, I heard stories of when they talked to their grandparents who were slaves, I knew older people who lived through segregation and Jim Crow, etc. The African-American experience is something different than other blacks experience.

    That might be why he struggled at first to gain popularity with African-Americans. He simply didn't have the African-American experience, which may have turned a lot of them off. My family didn't either, which is why I have a lot of difficulty relating to them (But I grew up around the AA experience).

    Again, I'm speaking as a person of color with lots of black ancestry, and who grew up in a neighborhood with an African-American plurality. Even though I'm not African-American (Hey, mon!), I grew up seeing the African-American experience growing up. I sympathize with the AA experience, because my ancestors were also slaves.

    Being African-American is so much more than being black, it's also having the African-American experience. Which I will never have, which BHO will never have, but you bet Michelle Obama had.

    Which is why I say we haven't had our first African-American president. He or she is still out there, and when they're elected, it would be a great time in American history. It would mean that Jim Crow, segregation, etc was finally destroyed. It wasn't simply sidestepped.

    You guys simply don't get it.......
     
  7. David T Well-Known Member

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    This definition is hardly indisputable--it has been debated among both blacks and whites. https://www.nytimes.com/2004/08/29/us/african-american-becomes-a-term-for-debate.html

    One problem I have with it (though not immediately relevant to Obama) is that West Indian immigrants do have an ancestral experience of New World (and thus in a broad sense "American") slavery and many are as unsure of precisely where in Africa their ancestors came from as are black Americans descended from slaves in the antebellum South (and some of the latter have in fact managed to trace their ancestry to a specific part of Africa).

    But this is really a matter for Chat.
     
  8. AltHistoryNerd Now 99% Jovian Flying Fox Free

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    Let's take it to chat. I'll tell you why the West Indian-American experience is nothing like the African-American experience.
     
  9. AltHistoryNerd Now 99% Jovian Flying Fox Free

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    And in American, I mean USAmerican, not the American supercontinent.
     
  10. Brady Kj Well-Known Member

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    That's an interesting take on African American.
     
  11. IntellectuallyHonestRhino Well-Known Member

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    So, this is not very hard to do, except that you've got to change certain political metrics.


    One reason we've had a lot of Anglo-Saxon Protestant presidents recently is because the South was the key to the white house (from LBJ to Clinton, all the Democratic presidents (people who won the election) were Southerners).


    Reagan was from the rural Midwest, Nixon was from rural California, and the Bush family come from the northeast.


    Mario Cuomo was a strong contender at one point, and Dukakis was a candidate, and Dukakis never faced serious challenges due to his Greek heritage, but instead due to his political ties.


    Kennedy's ancestry was indeed from the British isles, but remember, the Irish are the black sheep of that family. So, having a president from that heritage is still a big deal.


    If the electoral battle zone were the Northeast, expect more Catholic presidents.
     
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  12. David T Well-Known Member

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    So far as Turkish-Americans are concerned, there is Oz Bengur, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oz_Bengur who finished a respectable second in the 2002 congressional primary for MD-02. (He got 36 percent of the vote compared to winner "Dutch" Ruppersberger 's 50 percent. https://www.ourcampaigns.com/RaceDetail.html?RaceID=897) Had he won the primary, he like Ruppersberger would be favored for the general election; the district had been reapportioned to favor the Democrats. He might have gone on from there to statewide elective office. But I have a hard time seeing him on a national ticket, MD being a safely blue state and Turkish-Americans not exactly a massive voting bloc...
     
  13. Brady Kj Well-Known Member

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    What if there wasn't an electoral college? Could that lead to more ethnically diverse presidents?
     
  14. IntellectuallyHonestRhino Well-Known Member

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    No idea; that would lead to so many butterflies.
     
  15. Thomas Jefferson Well-Known Member

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    In this case, we should expect to see more candidates with Central/Eastern European backgrounds like Tim Pawlenty (Polish) and George Voinovich (Serbian) as the battleground moves towards the Midwest
     
  16. Byzantion Well-Known Member

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    Vietnamese POTUS ? Maybe the child of refugees from the early Seventies.
     
  17. Whanztastic BohemianAmerican Defenestrater Monthly Donor

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    Difficulty is citizenship requirements. Basically all who are notable adults (40+ years old) were born in Vietnam, still, Rep. Stephanie Murphy for example.
     
  18. Mr_Fanboy Well-Known Member

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    You could have a timeline where Arnold's Amendment makes it through Congress and is subsequently added to the Constitution. Regardless of whether Schwarzenegger is elected president, it would create opportunities for other naturalized citizens to run for the highest office in the land.

    That said, have we seen any presidents of Austrian American extraction? If not...
     
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  19. Whanztastic BohemianAmerican Defenestrater Monthly Donor

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    John Kerry
     
  20. Thomas Jefferson Well-Known Member

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    The most politically prominent Vietnamese-American I can find who would meet the natural-born citizen requirement is Joe Nguyen, a freshman state senator in Washington. It'll probably be about ten years until we see a plausible Vietnamese-American presidential candidate.
     
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