President Nixon in the 1980's

Discussion in 'Finished Timelines and Scenarios' started by HaroldGodwinson, Jun 19, 2017.

  1. HaroldGodwinson Well-Known Member

    May 19, 2017
    Nixon - 1986.png

    POD: Senator Thomas Kuchel runs for Governor of California and Nixon runs for his old senate seat in 1962.

    1962: Former Vice President Richard Nixon runs for his old senate seat and narrowly defeats his Democrat opponent 53-47%, thanks in part to the public perception of him as a senior statesman whose services in the Senate are needed during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

    Kuchel loses to Pat Brown 49%-50%.

    1962 CA.PNG

    1963: Nixon returns to the Senate and plans to be a favorite-son presidential candidate from California in 1964 and use this block of delegates to be a power broker in deciding who the nominee will be.

    1964: Nixon runs unopposed as a favorite-son presidential candidate from California and tries to work with Rockefeller, Romney, and Scranton to Stop Goldwater. This effort ultimately fails and Goldwater narrowly wins the nomination on the first ballot at the Republican National Convention in San Francisco. Nixon wins over 100 votes and places third, even though he had never been an active candidate.

    Nixon campaigns hard for Goldwater and other Republicans in the general election and while the GOP loses in a landslide, one bright spot is the Republicans winning the other Senate seat from California with the election of George Murphy.

    1965: Nixon generally opposes Johnson's domestics policies and leads several efforts (some successful and some not) to amend or defeat Johnson's bills.

    1966: The Republicans make major gains in the midterms and Nixon is a major beneficiary of this success since he has campaigned harder than anyone else for the GOP around the country. Nixon's stock is particularly high in California, where is efforts helped the GOP sweep the state. Nixon had backed George Christopher over Ronald Reagan for Governor, but after Reagan won the primary, he campaign actively on his behalf.

    1967: Nixon prepares for a run in 1968 with California, center-right Republicans, and party county and state chairmen as his base on support.

    Nixon also offers Reagan a deal. If Reagan will endorse and support Nixon in 68', Nixon will back Reagan in 72' or 76', also if Nixon fails to win a majority on the first two ballots at the Republican National Convention in 1968, he will step aside for Reagan. Reagan agrees.

    In the fall, Nixon is struck by taxi in New York City and spends three months in a wheelchair and physical therapy. These critical lost months of campaigning will cost him dearly in 1968.

    1968: Nixon kicks offer his primary campaign with a strong win in New Hampshire with 57% of the vote. Nelson Rockefeller beats George Romney for second place 21%-14%.

    In April, Nixon easily wins Wisconsin and Rockefeller easily wins Massachusetts. Pennsylvania is closer with Rockefeller narrowly winning 41-38%.

    In May and June, Nixon wins 5 primaries to Rockefeller's 2.

    On June 4, as he is leaving his victory party at a Los Angeles Hotel, Nixon is shot by a Palestinian named Sirhan Sirhan. Although he survives, he will be in the hospital for a month and physical therapy for months after that. The day he was shot, Nixon was the presumptive nominee of his party, after it became clear that he could not continue with the rigors of campaign, he began looking for a candidate to run in is place.

    Nixon decided that Rockefeller was unacceptable to his conservative supporters while Romney was tarnished by a weak primary performance and gaffes.

    This left Ronald Reagan....


    At the National Convention in Miami, Nixon was given a 15-minute standing ovation by the delegates and used this goodwill to help unite the party. The party adopted a moderate-conservative platform, nominated Reagan for President over Rockefeller and Romney, and than Romney for Vice President.


    The Reagan/Romney ticket leaves the Republican national convention with a strong lead over Humphrey and Wallace 43-35-12.

    The Democratic National Convention was a scene of violent confrontations between police and anti-war protesters as the Democrats split into multiple factions.

    Humphrey won the nomination narrowly over Bobby Kennedy and Gene McCarthy. Humphrey choose Senator Ed Muskie as his running mate as LBJ vetoed picking Kennedy.

    Reagan runs on a campaign that promised to restore law and order to the nation's cities and provide new leadership in the Vietnam War. A year later, he would popularize the term "silent majority" to describe those he viewed as being his target voters.

    George Wallace's support drops fast among conservatives who gravitate towards Reagan. Wallace resists calls to withdraw and maintains 8-12% in the polls throughout the fall.

    Reagan challenges Humphrey to debate but Humphrey declines unless Wallace is excluded. The problem is solved when Wallace drops out in early October.

    The two campaigns finally agree on a single debate to held the Sunday before the election.

    Reagan was seen as the underdog going into the debate but shocked the press with a excellent performance. He also looked much healthier and vigorous than Humphrey on the color TV sets that many Americans were watching on.


    On Election Day, Reagan won by an surprisingly large margin in both the popular and electoral vote.


    The Republicans make substantial gains in the Congress as well, gaining Senate seats in Arizona, Florida, Indiana*, Maryland, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Pennsylvania; while holding all their existing seats, including California* (Where Lt. Governor Bob Finch was elected to succeed Nixon), and Iowa*.


    Republicans also gain 19 seats in in the House. Notable freshman include future Governor and Senator Kit Bond of Missouri, and David Treen of Louisiana (who defeated House Majority Whip Hale Boggs).


    91st Congress (1969-71)

    President pro temp: Richard Russell
    Senate Majority Leader: Mike Mansfield
    Senate Majority Whip: Ted Kennedy

    Senate Minority Leader: Everett Dirksen
    Senate Minority Whip: Hugh Scott

    House of Representatives
    Speaker of the House: John McCormick
    House Majority Leader: Carl Albert
    House Majority Whip: Tip O'Neill

    House Minority Leader: Gerald Ford
    House Minority Whip: Leslie Arends

    *Change from OTL.

    Infoboxes by Pug


    On January, 20th 1969, Ronald W. Reagan was sworn in as the 37th President of the United States of America. In his Inaugural Address, meticulously crafted by former Nixon speechwriter, Pat Buchanan, spoke to heal all the nations wounds, in which the best part of the speech was when he alluded back to his “A time for choosing” speech from ’64 when he said…”I have faith that you have the ability and the dignity and the right to make your own decisions and to determine your own destiny…Thank you, may god bless you and god bless America.”

    Reagan wanted to appoint Barry Goldwater as Secretary of Defense, but push back from liberal Republicans caused him to settle on Congressman Mel Laird.

    Secretary of State: Richard M. Nixon
    Secretary of Treasury: John Connally
    Secretary of Defense: Mevin Laird
    Attorney General: Sprio Agnew
    Postmaster General: Winton M. Blout
    Secretary of Interior: Wally Joseph Hickel
    Secretary of Labor: George P. Shultz
    Secretary of Agriculture: Clifford Hardin
    Secretary of Commerce: Maurice Stans
    Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare: Nelson Rockefeller
    Secretary of Housing and Urban Development: Daniel Patrick Moynihan
    Secretary of Transportation: John A. Volpe

    White House Chief of Staff: Edwin Meese

    The first obstacle that President Reagan faced was on not only to end the War in Vietnam but under what circumstances could the United States “win” the War.

    On January 21st, 1969, President Reagan informed Hanoi that the U.S. was prepared to agree to a ceasefire and withdraw its forces from South Vietnam if the North would agree to withdraw its forces and recognize the South as an independent nation. Reagan when the North refused, Reagan ordered the U.S. delegation in Paris to leaves the peace talks.

    Reagan, acting on advice from former President Eisenhower, and General of the Army Omar Bradley, ordered the Pentagon to prepare a plan for the invasion of North Vietnam. Reagan also ordered the U.S. Air Force to begin a policy of unrestricted bombing. Within two weeks, great damage had been done to vital targets including dams which (after bombing) flooded the countryside doing great damage to food production. The U.S. Navy also mined all navigable North Vietnamese rivers and harbors. U.S. Marines and Special Forces also invaded Laos and Cambodia to destroy enemy supplies and staging areas.

    Hanoi and its allies screamed about “war crimes” and Reagan was advised by many, including Nixon, to relent. Reagan refused to back to down, however, and ordered General Abrams to prepare to execute at two-pronged invasion of the North (one by land and one by sea) with a target date of June 1.

    The invasion was not to be, since on March 28, 1969 North Vietnam announced it would accept the U.S. terms of withdraw and recognition. The decision had been reached when Hanoi had been forced to ask China and Russia for more assistance and had been denied. Moscow and Peking agreed that it was to dangerous to risk losing all of Vietnam to a U.S. counter attack.

    The agreement was signed by the leaders of the official delegations on April 18, 1969, at the Hotel Majestic in Paris, France.

    After the Peace Accords, Reagan’s approval ratings shot passed 70% and he gained great political capital for his domestic agenda.

    On the Domestic Front, President Reagan during his first term largely kept true to his rather conservative instincts.

    On the economy, Reagan worked hard with his widely respected Treasury Secretary John Connally and his deputy Milton Friedman. In August of 1969, Reagan signed a 5% tax cut to help stimulate the sluggish economy. The success of the effort helped win Reagan over to what would later be called “Supply-Side Economics”.

    In September 1969, Senate Minority Leader Everett Dirksen died and Senator Howard Baker was elected to succeed him as leader.

    President Reagan also formed the Gates Commission to look into ending the military service draft implemented under the preceding President. The Gates Commission issued its report in February 1970, describing how adequate military strength could be maintained without having conscription. The draft was extended to January 1973, though it was not continued after that and no more draftees were called up after July 1969. Military pay was increased as an incentive to attract volunteers, and television advertising for the United States Army began.

    Reagan also began a plan of strategic missile defense which would later become know in 1980’s as “Star Wars” when it was revived by President Nixon.

    Another crowning achievement of President Reagan on the economy would be appointment of Democrat economist Paul Volcker to become Chairman of the Federal Reserve. With rising Inflation as a result from years of pursing “Obsolete” New Deal and “Cumbersome” Johnson Programs as well as a faltering gold standard, Reagan needed someone who was willing to make new bold decisions on the economy. After a long list of candidates, the economist from New Jersey was chosen to replace the retiring Fed Chair William Martin, Jr., in early 1970 and it was soon realized how bold this new chair would be. Two of Volcker crowning achievements in the first term, One would be his decision to suspend the gold convertibility in 1971, thus resulted the crash of the Breton Woods system. Volcker and Secretary of Treasury Friedman would often have words on some aspects on policy, but he generally advocated an international solution to monetary problems. His other achievement would be staving off an future Inflation problem, which Reagan saw as “Impending crisis which if it would have been allowed to continue unchecked would have slowed the American Economy to a crawl within ten years.” By instead of the widely popular idea of targeting interesting rates, Volcker went against the consensus and focused on limiting the growth of the money supply. This decision would ensure Volcker’s tenure as Federal Reserve Chairman for many years to come. Reagan was also advised to institute wage-and-price controls by his more liberal advisers but refused to do so. Reagan also created a commission to study how to reestablish a gold or a similar system to combat inflation**

    On the ERA, Reagan became the target of many women’s groups for not coming out openly of supporting it after its passage through Congress in 1971 and for keeping his “Leave it up to the States” policy. ERA would pass the Congress in 1975, only to be defeated during the ratification process.

    Reagan also left his mark on the federal judiciary, appointing Associate Justice John M. Harlan to succeed Earl Warren as Chief Justice. Next, Reagan appointed Warren Burger to fill Warren's seat. Reagan's first two appointments attracted little opposition, but his third did. On the advice of his conservative advisers, Reagan appointed Virginia Supreme Court Justice Albertis Harrison to fill the seat of Abe Fortas. Harrison had been a close ally of Senator Harry Byrd, Sr. and his segregationist past made his nomination a very tough battle. In the end, Harrison was confirmed 51-50, only after Vice President Romney (against his better judgment) broke the tie in the Senate

    1970: On Civil Rights, President Reagan during his first term had more of a mixed message as opposed to his strong achievements in the foreign policy and economic arenas. Initially, the 37th President received rave reviews when he nominated the Nelson Rockefeller to head HEW and Daniel Patrick Moynihan, to the position of Transportation Secretary. However any hopes that President Reagan would be some type of freedom rider for Justice soon became dashed. Reagan showed a relative libertarian approach when it came to desegregation in the South. Strategically, Reagan knew he had to count on the votes of conservative White Democrats to win the 1972 election, and that if he took any hard-line to enforce desegregation, he might very well loose the South to either the Democrats or even more likely another third party run by George Wallace. If there was one thing Reagan was adamantly opposed to, it was forced school busing, and the President made sure to tell voters on his position especially when he was on the stump during the 1970 congressional elections. President Reagan and his policy of Benign Neglect suggested to him by his HUD Secretary Daniel Patrick Moynihan via memo that “the issue of race could benefit from a period of 'benign neglect'. The subject has been too much talked about....We may need a period in which Negro progress continues and racial rhetoric fades." This policy soon proved to be wrong as the summers in Northern Cities remained Hot during Reagan’s 1st term as the influence and power of Black Nationalist groups continued to strengthen. President Reagan and his Attorney General Agnew would use every means necessary as given to them by the federal arsenal in order to hush the voices of dissonance in the minority populace.

    The 1970 Midterm Elections

    In the midterm elections, Reagan and the Republicans made history by gaining control of the House and Senate, this marked the only second time since the Civil War that an incumbent president's party gained seats in a midterm election.

    The takeover was added by the defection of several Democrats from the south to the Republicans.

    The Republicans make substantial gains in the Senate as well, gaining Senate seats in Connecticut, Delaware, Indiana*, Maryland, Missouri*, Ohio, Tennessee, and Virginia*; while holding all their existing seats. In California*, Senator George Murphy retired and was replaced by former L.A. Mayor Sam Yorty (who had changed parties to run as Republican). In Illinois*, Senator Donald Rumsfeld is re-elected narrowly over Adlai Stevenson III.

    One notable bright spot for the Democrats was Bobby Kennedy's easy victory in New York.


    Republicans also gain 20 seats in in the House (including 14 Southern Democrat defections).

    Notable House Republican freshmen include Jack Kemp (CA34).


    Notable gubernatorial elections included Alabama (George Wallace), Califorina (Ed Reinecke re-elected), Florida (Reubin Askew), Georgia (Jimmy Carter), and Texas (Paul Eggers).

    92nd Congress (1971-73)

    President pro temp: George Aiken
    Senate Majority Leader: Howard Baker
    Senate Majority Whip: Hugh Scott

    Senate Minority Leader: Ted Kennedy***
    Senate Majority Whip: Robert Byrd

    House of Representatives
    Speaker of the House: Gerald Ford
    House Majority Leader: John Rhodes
    House Majority Whip: Robert Michael

    House Minority Leader: Carl Albert
    House Minority Whip: Tip O'Neill

    *Change from OTL.
    **Reagan's policies prevented the creation of the Libertarian Party in 1971.
    ***Kennedy's reputation is much stronger since there is no Chappaquiddick in this TL.

    1971: In January 1971, Reagan revealed the Total Economic Reconstruction of Family Assistance (or TERFA) and was sent to Congress for the vote. By a margin of 218-212 in the House and 61-39 in the Senate, the Congress passed enhanced TERFA called for implementation a single system which accomplished both the funding of government and the social goal of ensuring a minimum level of income. In the presence of the TERFA, inasmuch as that the social goal is reached, it potentially removed the need for minimum wage, food stamps, welfare, social security programs and so on, while requiring a fraction of the administrative effort, and avoiding the pitfalls and perverse incentives which exist in systems with overlapping aid programs. A worker under TERFA always gets the same portion of each marginal dollar earned, so there is always an equal incentive to work. Finally the TERFA System would reduce administrative overhead, since the large bureaucracies responsible for administering taxation and welfare systems could be eliminated. The plan was opposed by both hard-line conservatives and New Deal and Great Society liberals. In the end, the plan only narrowly passed when Senator Robert Kennedy joined with Republicans and conservative Democrats to break a filibuster of the plan lead by Senator George McGovern. Upon signing of the Bill, President Reagan stated that “Although this is a crowning achievement, in which that the founders of this great nation would be proud…We know that it is not perfect, and I look forward to in the future working with Congress to making sure that this system remains a success.”

    Finally, On the Final Frontier, President Reagan made it very clear during the ’68 campaign that he would be enthusiastic about NASA and promised an expansion for the Space Program. On July 19, 1969, astronaut Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong became the first humans to walk on the Earth's moon, while fellow astronaut Michael Collins orbited in the Apollo 11 command module. Reagan made what has been termed the longest-distance telephone call ever made to speak with the astronauts from the Oval Office.

    In spring 1971, a plan to overthrow Fidel Castro began to take shape, with a group of Reagan aides known as the "Plumbers" using private funds from right-wing businessmen to fund Cuban anti-Castro terrorist/"freedom fighter" groups in going to Cuba and causing trouble.

    In September 1971, Chief Justice John M. Harlan and Hugo Black resigned from the Supreme Court for health reasons. Reagan promptly appointed Deputy AG William Rehnquist as Chief Justice and Solicitor General Robert Bork as Associate Justice.

    With his approval rating floating around 70%, a Republican takeover of Congress in the ’70 election, Vietnam technically won, and a string of successful Apollo missions to the Moon…The 60 year old President declared that he would seek reelection on July 4th, 1971. Also within the speech, Ronald Reagan announced that he would be sending to Congress a bill which would allow for an expansion of NASA’s budget in order to pay for NASA Administrator's ambitious plan that called for the establishment of a lunar base and a massive space station in Earth orbit before the end of the 1970s, culminating in a manned mission to Mars as early as 1981. With a rejuvenated NASA, tolled into the costs of continual aid to the South Vietnamese, and the creation of the TERFA system, the American People experienced one of the largest tax hikes in history…but President Reagan was able to reassure voters that if reelected that “Relief will soon be on the way, because America’s future rests in a thousand dreams inside your hearts.”


    Sectary of State Richard Nixon and his Deputy Henry Kissinger begin to make quit overtures to China with Reagan's support. Reagan insisted that he not be seen as willing to "open China' until after the election.

    Treasury Secretary John Connally resigned in early 1972, to Chair Reagan's re-election campaign. Connally was replaced by his deputy Milton Friedman.

    1972 Democratic Nomination

    By mid 1971, as President Reagan’s approval rating held pretty steady the mid 50’s to low 60’s in most of the country, due to his strong foreign policy achievements and a strong economy at home. This perceived strength, caused many leading Democrats like Bobby Kennedy, Ted Kennedy, Ed Muskie, Hubert Humphrey, and George Wallace to skip the race. This opened the Democratic Field to a large number of largely unknown candidates, each hoping to win their party’s nomination and rebound it from the chaos of the 1968 Convention in Chicago.

    Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm of New York
    Senator Fred Harris of Oklahoma
    Senator Henry “Scoop” Jackson of Washington
    Mayor John Lindsay of New York
    Senator George McGovern of South Dakota
    Former Senator Eugene McCarthy of Minnesota
    Congressman Wilbur Mills of Arkansas
    Congresswoman Patsy Mink of Hawaii
    Former Governor Terry Sanford of North Carolina

    The media considered Jackson, Lindsay, McCarthy, and McGovern as front-runners with Sanford and Harris as dark-horses and Chisholm, Mink and Mills as favorite-son/daughter candidates.

    McGovern won the Iowa caucuses in an upset over McCarthy.

    John Lindsay won the Arizona caucus five days later with McGovern close behind.

    In New Hampshire, Lindsay and McCarthy had been front-runners, but after McGovern's win in Iowa, his stock was rising in the Granite State. On primary day, Lindsay narrowly won the primary with McCarthy and McGovern close behind. This win caused most media outlets to declare Lindsay the front-runner.

    So the media focused in on Florida, a state in which Representative Shirley Chisholm vigorously campaigned in since her early entry into the race in 1971. Senator Scoop Jackson would come to win Florida with 29% of the vote, with Lindsay placing second and, in a shock finish, Chisholm finished third, narrowly edging Sanford, based upon high black voter turnout (as a result of her extensive campaign in the state).

    Lindsay won Illinois in late March while McGovern won Idaho and Vermont.

    In the next major primary, Wisconsin, Although McGovern ultimately won the state, Chisholm finished third with 18% of the vote. Jackson matched this with a victory in Pennsylvania.

    Jackson then began a winning streak with victories in Indiana, Ohio, and Tennessee. Terry Sanford won North Carolina as a favorite-son but had very little support elsewhere.

    Representative Chisholm came away with surprise wins in Massachusetts and Maryland in May. Her win in Maryland. Chisholm also won two caucuses in the South.

    McGovern won the final major contest with his win in the Californium primary over Jackson.

    Green-Jackson Red-McGovern Blue-Lindsay Brown-Chisholm Light Blue-McCarthy Yellow-Favorite-Sons

    At the convention in Miami, 1507 delegates are needed for victory. Jackson had 1000, McGovern has 700, Lindsay has 500, and Chisholm has 450, with the rest scattering. Lindsay was seen as a turncoat Republican by many party activists and seemed unlikely to be nominated. Jackson was seen as too conservative by the liberal forces who united to support a McGovern/Chisholm ticket in a 'stop Jackson' movement; however, Chisholm extracted a bargain of pledged support in 1976 or 1980 from the party machine. Finally, after a few rounds of balloting, it soon became clear that Senator George McGovern was the Democratic Party’s nominee for President. Shirley Chisholm was then nominated for Vice-President. McGovern would later admit that the choice of Chisholm was not politically wise, but he knew by that point that he had virtually no chance of beating Reagan and wanted to make history in his choice of a running-mate as well as help advance the interests of women and minorities in the Democratic Party.

    1972 Republican Nomination

    After they declared their intention to seek a second term on July 4th, 1971 the ticket of Reagan/Romney ran unchallenged through the primaries. Despite grumblings, the moderate wing of the party, no serious challenge was mounted. Although a popular Incumbent President, Reagan would insist on openly campaigning, to show the American People that for a couple of older gentlemen, the ticket could still campaign with the best of them. That decision would come back to haunt Ronald Reagan, While in Frederick, Maryland on May 15th, 1972, the 37th president was fired upon four times by the crazed Arthur Bremer. While two of the Bullets harmlessly fired into the air, two of them hit the president as one pierced his left lung, narrowing missing his heart and the other grazed his left shoulder.

    After having emergency surgery to remove the bullet, Reagan joked to the surgeons, “I hope you are all Republicans!”, although they were not, one of the surgeons replied back, “Today Mr. President we’re all Republicans.” After a temporary transference of power to Vice President Romney, American’s were relieved to find out that the operation was a success and that the Gipper was in high spirits. It was reported, when First Lady Nancy Reagan came to see him in the Hospital, the President told her “Honey, I forgot to duck.” Nancy however was still furious and asked to Chief of Staff Edwin Meese, “How could this have happened!” Security around the President became tighter than ever as he discontinued all of his planned campaign stops, taking time to full recover. By the time the convention rolled around, the President’s approval rating’s sky rocketed to 75%, with his re-nomination secured by acclamation and chants of “Four More Years!” The Charismatic President simply replied back, “Ok, I’m willing if you are!”

    President Reagan receives a tumultuous welcome at the 1972 Republican National Convention

    The 1972 General Election

    With the Approval Rating of the Incumbent President still in the mid ‘70’s at the start of the General Election, it was the job of the McGovern/Chisholm campaign to play catch up. The Democratic ticket ran on a campaign on a platform in favor of Desegregation, education reform and promising a return to the Great Society programs of the ‘60’s, in an appeal to the fraying New Deal coalition, those on the New Left and Minority groups.

    On the Republican Side, most of the actual campaign on the stump was done by surrogates from the administration. President Reagan would actually appear in a few heavily guarded campaign stops, while Vice President Romney and others went out to promote the president's ideals to the American people. In the media, most of the campaign spots, would convey a sense of “Morning in America”, promoting the administration’s achievements on Vietnam, a strengthened economy, and a restoration of Law and Order at home.

    Reagan and McGovern debated three times. The debates were fairly cordial. The highlight of the debates was the Romney-Chisholm VP debate, the first of it's kind, which saw Romney tripping over himself trying not to come across as sexist or racist.

    By November 7th, the result was a forgone conclusion. President Reagan would be reelected in a landslide victory on all accounts, as he won every state except Massachusetts and secure more than 60% of the popular vote. On election night, President Reagan answered the chants of “Four More Years!” from his loyal supporters with his charm, “I think that has just been arranged!”


    The Democrats managed to avoid heavy Congressional loses to the Republicans gaining Senate seats in Iowa, Maine, and South Dakota. The Republicans held onto vulnerable seats in Colorado*, Delaware*, Kentucky*, and Michigan, as well as gaining seats in Montana*, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma (Jim Inhofe), Virginia.


    Republicans only gain 12 seats in the House, thanks in part to many Democrats abandoning McGovern and actively associating themselves with Reagan.


    93rd Congress (1973-75)

    President pro temp: George Aiken
    Senate Majority Leader: Howard Baker
    Senate Majority Whip: Hugh Scott

    Senate Minority Leader: Ted Kennedy
    Senate Majority Whip: Robert Byrd

    House of Representatives
    Speaker of the House: Gerald Ford
    House Majority Leader: John Rhodes
    House Majority Whip: Robert Michael

    House Minority Leader: Carl Albert
    House Minority Whip: Tip O'Neill

    *Change from OTL.

    Source: President Reagan - in 1968
    Infoboxes by Pug
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2017
  2. HaroldGodwinson Well-Known Member

    May 19, 2017
    President Reagan and Secretary of State Nixon after Nixon's trip to China.

    On January 20th, 1973, the 61 year old President took the oath of office from his newly appointed Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court William Rehnquist. A highlight of his second inaugural address “When we met here four years ago, America was bleak in spirit, depressed by the prospect of seemingly endless war abroad and of destructive conflict at home. As we meet here today, I stand here to let the American People know that America, almost 200 years after the birth of this republic, is still a Shinning City upon a Hill!” With his first term administration virtually intact, President Reagan set out during his second term to finish the goals which he had promised in both the ’68 and ’72 campaign.

    Two days later, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in favor of Wade in the now famous case of Roe vs Wade. While little noted at the time the case would lead feminists and new leftists to launch far greater efforts to repeal state laws against abortion and insist that all future presidential appointments to the Supreme Court be pro-choice or "Anti-Roe" and vigorously oppose "Pro-Roe" or anti-abortion justices and judges.

    Reagan also reorganized his cabinet. Nixon remained at State, Friedman at Treasury, and Agnew at Justice. Barry Goldwater took over at Defense replacing Mel Laird.

    During the Reagan administration, Nixon had been given a largely free hand in foreign policy by forging new links with rivals in order to reduce international tensions. In February 1973, Nixon traveled to Shanghai in China for talks with Premier Zhou Enlai. Reagan had decided not to visit China until Mao was dead and used Nixon, Kissinger, and George Bush as his representatives. The "Nixon to China" trip was the first high-level contact between the United States and the People's Republic of China in more than twenty years, and it ushered in a new era of relations between Washington and Beijing.

    Several weeks later, in March 1973, Reagan as advised by his Secretary of State, visited Geneva for a summit meeting with Leonid Brezhnev, general secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, and other Soviet leaders. Their talks led to the signing of the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty, the first comprehensive and detailed nuclear weapons limitation pact between the two superpowers. Reagan also wanted an agreement on reduction of nuclear weapons but Brezhnev balked at this and such an agreement would have to wait till the 1980's.

    One of his first goals, he wanted to achieve was that of the economy…Although Inflation was down, Volcker and his Federal Reserve tightened the money supply and rose interest rates. This combined with effects of the 1973 Oil Crisis it became apparent the United States economy would suffer a Recession. Thanks to some belt-tightening, Reagan was able to get Congress to pass a balanced budget in FY 1974 and FY 1975. President Reagan gave relief to the American People with a Treasury Secretary Friedman supported, across the board tax cut with the top rate failing from 70% to 50% and the bottom rate to 15%. After a mild recession in 1973, the economy recovered in the summer of 1974 and was going strong by 1975.

    President Reagan and Fed Chairman Paul Volcker in 1973

    During the Yom Kippur War and the following oil crisis, President Reagan being the valiant supporter of the nation of Israel he was, the Reagan did not hesitate when the Jewish nation asked for a large number of American weapons to help fight off an Arab Coalition led by Soviet-allied Egypt and Syria in October, 1973. By the time both President Reagan and General Secretary Brezhnev negotiated a truce, the Israeli armed forces had already penetrated deep into homelands of the coalition. It would be soon be realized that the Israeli victory was a Pyrrhic one as the members of OPEC rose oil prices in response to President Reagan’s support for Israel.

    In wake of the OPEC oil price spike, Congress passed legislation to dramatically expand domestic oil production and refining as well as legislation to provide that nuclear power provide at least 25% of U.S. power needs by 1985.

    President Reagan and House Speaker Gerald Ford discuss legislation.

    Reagan would also gain praise around the country for his continued adamant support of NASA as he oversaw both the launches of Apollo 19 and 20 both with dual Saturn V rockets. The 1973 Apollo mission brought the lunar module shelter onto the surface followed by a Lunar Orbital Survey mission. Two of the Astronauts will stay inside the makeshift lunar shelter for fourteen days as one of the Astronauts performs all of the necessary excursion work via Rover.

    However, President Reagan’s good relationship with Democrats would not last, as he rejected a plan created by his HUD Secretary Daniel Patrick Moynihan for comprehensive Health Care Insurance. Citing it was too expensive and went against his conservative beliefs, the rejection of the plan soon proved to be the last straw for Moynihan, who soon resigned the office in December of 1973. Although he would be replaced by James Thomas Lynn, former Secretary Moynihan would take his experience into his run in the 1974 New York Gubernatorial election. He would beat out primary opponent Hugh Carey and Governor Malcolm Wilson.

    In October 1973, AG Spiro Agnew would be formally charged conspiracy, tax fraud, extortion and bribery. In addition to those crimes, it is reported that Agnew accepted more than 100,000 dollars worth in bribes during his tenure as Baltimore County Executive, Governor of Maryland and Attorney General of the United States. He would quickly resign the office of Attorney General, and was replaced by White Chief of State Ed Meese. Meese was replaced as Chief of Staff by his deputy Pat Buchanan.

    Just days after the Agnew registration, a second scandal would break that would threaten to envelop the whole Reagan administration. On November 2, FBI and DC Police raided an office in the Watergate building that was registered to the harmless sounding "Committee for Cuban Education". The FBI had been watching the group as a likely gun running and money laundering operation. Documents recovered indicated that private funds were being used to fund "assassination squads" and other activities n Cuba to destabilize and ultimately overthrow Fidel Castro. The cache of documents, while interesting, did not stand out particularly from other similar anti-Castro groups until the names of White House aides Chuck Colson and G. Gordon Liddy were found. It would ultimately come out that Colson and Liddy had been working in concert with ex-CIA agents and a Marine Captain named Oliver North. North would gain fame for testifying before the "Watergate Committee" in full uniform and defending his actions as an "after-hours" effort to help overthrow a brutal dictator. North would be forced to resign from the Marines in 1975 but would go on to success and fame as a conservative media and political figure. In the end, only Colson and Liddy would spend a year in jail but would both emerge as heroes on the right.

    1974: A sputtering economy and the Watergate scandal hurt Republicans going into the midterms slim majority in Congress would fall in the 1974.

    The 1974 Midterm Elections

    In the wake of the economic recession and stock market crash of 1973-1974, any idea that the Republicans would hold onto to their slim control over the Senate soon became shattered as Senate Democrats locked up their majority 52 to 48. In the House, the Democrats would pick up 36 seats. The American People sent their message clear to President Reagan that he would either have to learn compromise or face a potential shutdown of the Federal Government…

    The Democrats gained Senate seats in Colorado, Iowa, Indiana (Birch Bayh comeback), Kentucky, New Hampshire, New York*, and Vermont. The Republicans did manage to gain a seat in Nevada with the election of Paul Laxalt. The GOP did manage to held onto some valuable seats including California* and Florida*.


    Democrats gained 36 seats in the House, with many of the freshmen being McGovern liberals known as "Watergate babies".


    Incoming House Majority Leader Tip O'Neill vowed to get to the bottom of the Agnew and Watergate Scandals.

    94th Congress (1975-77)


    President pro temp: James Eastland
    Senate Majority Leader: Ted Kennedy
    Senate Majority Whip: Robert Byrd

    Senate Minority Leader: Howard Baker
    Senate Majority Whip:
    Hugh Scott

    House of Representatives

    Speaker of the House: Carl Albert

    House Majority Leader: Tip O'Neill
    House Majority Whip: Jim Wright

    House Minority Leader: John Rhodes
    House Minority Whip: Robert Michael

    On New Years Day 1975, President Reagan traveled to Los Angeles to give a speech. As he left the building after his speech he decided to work to rope line and began shaking hands and signing autographs. The crowd was friendly and Reagan was heard to say to an aide, "This is Great". A few seconds later gunshots split the sound of adoring crowds. Secret Service Agents rushed into action and surrounded the President and practically hurled him into the presidential limo. As the chief agent climbed off the president, he realized he wasn't breathing, as the limo rushed towards the hospital, the agents desperately began attempting to resuscitate the president................

    President Reagan just seconds before being shot.

    *Change from OTL.

    Official Portrait of President Reagan.

    On January 1st, 1975 President Reagan is shot in Los Angeles, by a member of the Manson Family, and is rushed to the hospital.

    Shortly after Reagan arrives at the hospital, Press Secretary Lyn Nofziger, his eyes red from weeping, announces to the press corps that the President died without regaining consciousness. Details released later will show that Reagan's heart was pierced by their .45 bullet.

    President Reagan's casket lying in state at the U.S. Capitol.

    President Reagan's funeral sets new record for attendance. His popularity, while strong in life, went skyward in death. He became the Republican Kennedy.

    The most impactful eulogy given was by Secretary of State Richard Nixon.
    In his remarks, Nixon not only elevated Reagan to secular sainthood (at least in the minds of many Americans), as well as make himself the heir to the Gipper. He believed, and helped us believe that faith and freedom must be our guiding stars, for they show us truth, they make us brave, give us hope, and unleash the invincible spirit of one great nation under God......He truly was "The Great Communicator"............... And now, as we send him to be with the Lord he loved so well, let us be worthy of his legacy. A troubled and afflicted mankind looks to us, pleading for us to keep our rendezvous with destiny; that we will uphold the principles of self-reliance, self-discipline, morality, and, above all, responsible liberty for every individual that we will become that shining city on a hill.”

    President Romney and Secretary Nixon.

    President Romney offered Nixon the Vice Presidency, but Nixon declined, reportedly saying "No man who ever held the office of Vice-President would ever consider holding it again." After some further vetting, Romney picked Nelson Rockefeller as Vice President. Bush was easily confirmed by Congress.

    Nixon continued to serve as Secretary of State for a few months before retiring to California. Romney named Kissinger to succeed Nixon at State. Attorney General Ed Meese and White House Chief of Staff Pat Buchanan resigned shortly after Nixon, due to disagreements with President Romney's appointment of John Paul Stevens to the Supreme Court. Defense Secretary Barry Goldwater resigned in the fall of 1975 because of his objection to Romney's lack of aggressive support of Cuban freedom fighters and South Vietnam. Romney named Elliot Richardson as his new AG, James Schlesinger as SecDef, and Donald Rumsfeld as WHCOS.

    President Romney also made history as the first President to visit Mainland China in the summer of of 1975. Many conservatives opposed this action since Mao was still alive.

    To help ensure his popularity and reelection, Romney also moved to the left, approving a bailout for NYC, appointing a liberal to the Supreme Court, and signing a bill to create the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as well as The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). The straw that broke the camel's back for conservatives was when Romney agreed to a tax increase to help deal with the deficit. Treasury Secretary Milton Friedman resigned shortly after to be replaced by William Simon.

    Shortly, after the tax increase/budget vote, Congressman John Ashbrook announced he would challenge Romney in 1976. Ashbrook had been trying to recruit a better candidate (Nixon, Goldwater, Buchanan, Connally) but no one wanted to go up against Romney, who was still popular. Ashbrook hoped that by his running, conservatives would be inspired to fight for a conservative platform, a conservative VP, and maybe a new nominee in 1976.

    Shortly after Ashbrook's announcement, California Governor Ed Reinecke announced he would run as a conservative favorite-son in the California primary.

    Romney's policies also led to the formation of the Libertarian Party in late 1975.

    After the massive defeat of the McGovern/Chisholm ticket in 1972, it soon became apparent that in the battle for the nomination of 1976, that it would be a fight between the Conservative and Liberal factions of the party. The campaign effectively began in 1974, as many candidates began actively fundraising for their respective campaigns then.

    Former Governor Jimmy Carter (D-GA)
    Senator Henry “Scoop” Jackson of Washington
    Representative Mo Udall of Arizona
    Governor George Wallace of Alabama

    One of the surprising events in the race for the Democratic Nomination was that Representative Shirley Chisholm, who finished a strong third in the 1972 nomination, who instead of running a second time for the Presidency of the United States, she decided to focus on her newly won Senate seat.

    Senators Hubert Humphrey, Ted Kennedy, and Bobby Kennedy were also said to be looking at a bid.


    1976 Democratic Nomination

    In big surprises Carter beat Udall in Iowa.

    In New Hampshire, Udall narrowly won over Carter.

    With Romney running unopposed in the Republican primary in Massachusetts, the whole focus was on the Democratic primary which saw an upset victory for George Wallace, thanks in part to support from crossover Republicans who would soon become known as "Wallace Republicans".

    In Florida, Wallace beat Carter.

    Next in Illinois, Wallace beat Carter again, but only by a narrow margin.

    Wallace would go on the win most of the following primaries, building a large delegate lead.

    The success of Wallace caused California Governor Jerry Brown, Idaho Senator Frank Church to enter the primaries. Senator Bobby Kennedy also entered the New York primarily as a favorite-son. Hubert Humphrey also began to court delegates for a the second and third ballot at the DNC.

    Thanks in part to divided opposition, Wallace continued to edge closer to a first ballot majority.

    DNC leaders and liberal activists however had a plan to stop Wallace at the convention.

    Red-Wallace Yellow-Udall Brown-Brown Light Green-Kennedy Light Blue-Church Pink-Carter Dark Green-Humphrey Dark Red-Byrd

    At the convention in NYC, a coalition of party leaders and liberal activists on the credentials committee throw out delegations for Wallace from Missouri and Delaware thereby denying him the majority on the first round. Wallace's supporters and many rule-of-law type Democrats (including Humphrey) opposed the credentials committee report. It was only after a roll call vote that the committee report passed by a margin of less than 10 votes. The report's passage ensured Wallace's defeat and he and his supporters walked out that night.

    The next day, Wallace announced he was withdraw from "a rigged system" and would be running "as a conservative, populist, independent in the general election." The American

    After some early ballots, the race came down to Humphrey vs. Kennedy. with Humphrey narrowly winning.

    Humphrey than offered the VP spot to Kennedy, but Kennedy declined and Humphrey picked Carter as VP.


    The 1976 Democratic Ticket

    1976 American Independent Party Nomination

    The AIP nominated for George Wallace for President and Congressman John Schmitz for Vice President.

    Wallace's bid in 1976 was considered stronger than his run in 1968 since he was now supported by many more conservative Republicans who felt betrayed by Romney.


    1976 Republican Nomination

    In a big upset in Iowa, Ashbrook won an astonishing 34% to Romney's 44%. The remaining 22% was cast for unpledged delegates.

    In the month between Iowa and New Hampshire, Ashbrook saw a large boost in support, and Nixon, Goldwater, and Connally began to reconsider running against Romney.

    Meanwhile, Illinois Congressman Phil Crane and North Carolina Senator Jesse Helms announced bids for president as favorite-sons. Helms also agreed to have his name placed on several other southern ballots. Romney pulled out of the Illinois primary and had Senator Chuck Percy run in his place.

    Romney also pulled out of North Carolina leaving Helms unopposed. Ashbrook also dropped out of Massachusetts to focus on New Hampshire and Florida.

    In New Hampshire, Romney won 49% to 38% with 6% going to Nixon as write-in. Romney's win, while it stabilized him somewhat, exposed vulnerabilities in his reelection bid. Romney's failure to win a majority of the total votes cast in the Republican primary demonstrated the depth of resentment from the conservative base of the party.

    In Florida, Romney won over Ashbrook.

    Next in Illinois, Phil Crane came within 1,000 votes of winning the primary and ended up winning more delegates than Percy.
    This upset gave a huge boost to the "Stop Romney" forces going into the North Carolina primary.

    Romney and Wallace would go on the win most of the following primaries, building a large delegate lead.

    Helms won
    several southern races and caucuses as well.

    Conservatives, meanwhile, had been very active in the delegate election process and were certain they had the votes to pass a conservative platform and dump Rockefeller as VP.

    genusmap r76.png
    Blue-Romney Red-Ashbrook Orange-Reinecke Green-Helms Yellow-Percy

    At the convention in Kansas City, The conservative's passed a Reagan conservative platform over the objections of Romney and the moderates.

    Romney won on the first ballot
    with 1369 votes to 416 for Ashbrook's, 348 for Helms, 176 for Reinecke, 55 for Crane, 50 for Percy, and 20 scattering. Romney also made history as the oldest man (69) ever nominated by a major political party for president up to that point.

    Despite Wallace's third party bid gaining support from conservatives and threatening Romney's right flank, the President refused to accept a new VP. The conservatives nominated multiple candidates hoping to stop Rockefeller. After the first ballot Rockefeller was ahead, but more than 250 votes away from a majority. After the first ballot, Romney appeared in person and declared he would renounce the nomination is Rockefeller were not nominated. After a long recess, and countless promises, bribes, and threats, Rockefeller won on the third ballot with just 2 votes to spare.

    President Romney and Vice-President Rockefeller at the 1976 RNC.

    After the convention, over 200 conservative delegates announced their support for Wallace.

    The first Gallup poll after the Republican national convention showed Romney leading Humphrey by 38-33%. But the real shock was the 23% for Wallace. Wallace had gained considerable support from conservatives after the renomination of Romney and Rockefeller.

    Less than a week after the RNC, special prosecutor Archibald Cox and the "Watergate Commission" reported that the illegal activities of the Reagan years reached all the way to the Oval Office. Cox contended that President Reagan and than Vice President Romney were aware of the general actions of the White House aides and Oliver North. North and the aides denied this and Reagan loyalists lead by Pat Buchanan attacked the report as a partisan hack job pointing the Cox's well known connection to the Kennedy family. It would be decades before all the facts were established, and some still debate them today.

    While the public didn't seem to lower their opinion Reagan over the revelations, Romney's attempt to distance himself from Reagan made him look disloyal and disrespectful for attacking a man who couldn't defend himself. Buchanan and Former First Lady Nancy Reagan appeared together at a nationally televised press conference to respond to the Cox and Romney charges. Nancy's emotional loyalty to her husband and Buchanan strident defense of Reagan not only hurt Romney but made Buchanan into a national conservative celebrity and caused him to consider entering politics as a candidate for office.

    Meanwhile, the Democrats took advantage of the GOP infighting to launch a nationwide tour. Humphrey had decided to move towards the center on several issues to help him be competitive in the south and suburbs and also made good use of Senators Bobby and Ted Kennedy as well as his running mate Jimmy Carter. Senators Shirley Chisholm and George McGovern were also valued assists in the black and liberal communities respectively.

    Humphrey's momentum saw him pass Romney in the polls for about a week, before Playboy magazine published a controversial interview with Carter; in the interview, Carter admitted to having “lusted in my heart” for women other than his wife, which cut into the Democratic ticket's support among women and evangelical Christians.

    Carter's gaffe was balanced out by Romney being caught on tape saying that people who opposed busing and integrated housing were racists.

    Wallace continued his rise in the polls leading into the first debate on September 23. Wallace's choice of Congressman John G. Schmitz as his running-mate proved a wise one as Schmitz became a favorite with press corps because of his witty one-liners, such as "I have no objection to President Romney going to China. I just object to his coming back."

    Shortly before the first presidential debate, Gallup showed Humphrey and Romney tied at 34% each and Wallace at 26%.

    In the first debate, Wallace did surprisingly well, defying expectations and seeming presidential. Romney and Humphrey started by attacking Wallace, but Wallace relished the spotlight and used it to show that "There's not a dimes worth of difference between President Romney and Vice President Humphrey." By the end of the debate, Wallace, Romney, Humphrey were seen as having fought to a draw, with Wallace gaining the most by looking presidential and not playing the stereotypical Redneck racist.

    Polls after the debate showed Wallace close to 30% with Humphrey and Romney in a dead heat at a little over 30% each.

    However, Romney also committed a costly blunder in the campaign that halted his momentum. During the second presidential debate on October 6, Romney stumbled when he asserted that “there is no Soviet domination of Eastern Europe and there never will be under a Romney administration.” He added that he did not “believe that the Poles consider themselves dominated by the Soviet Union”, and made the same claim with regards to Yugoslavia and Romania. (Yugoslavia was not a Warsaw Pact member.) Romney refused to retract his statement for almost a week after the debate; as a result Humphrey was able to maintain a slight lead in the polls.

    A vice-presidential debate, the first ever formal one of its kind, between Carter, Rockefeller, and Schmitz was seen as draw with Rockefeller looking presidential, Carter looking folksy, and Schmitz having some great one-liners.

    The third presidential debate was seen as victory for Humphrey.

    Going into Election Day, Humphrey was leading with between 35-40% in the polls with Romney pulling at 30-35% and Wallace at around 25%.

    Election night was much closer than expected, Humphrey took the lead early in the popular vote but the electoral vote was much closer, with Wallace sweeping the South, Humphrey winning the northeast, and Romney winning the west. The race came down to Ohio, Illinois, and California.

    In the end, Humphrey won all three and the presidency without a runoff in the House.


    Humphrey made history as the first president elected with under 40% of the popular vote since Abraham Lincoln.

    Romney also went down in history for wining the smallest share of the popular vote of an incumbent president ever.

    Wallace was the only the second candidate since 1860 to win more electoral votes than the two major parties. His electoral vote total was also the largest ever won by a third party candidate.

    Considering the fact that Romney's approval rating had been over 60% less than a year before the election, it was one of the most astonishing collapses in support for a president in history.

    Romney's decision to ignore the conservative base of the GOP, while chasing "the media, moderates, and minorities" as Pat Buchanan put it, proved to be unsuccessful. Moderates and liberals did not come over in sufficient numbers to make up for the millions who defected to Wallace or just stayed home.

    In the Senate elections, Republicans held Arizona*, where Barry Goldwater is elected to the Senate for the third time, having previously served from 1953-65 and 1969-1973; and California (Sam Yorty) among others including Virginia*, where Harry Byrd Jr. was reelected. Democrats gained seats in Hawaii, Maryland, Nebraska, Ohio, and Tennessee. Republicans also made gains in New Mexico, Rhode Island, Utah, and Wyoming. In New York, Senator Bobby Kennedy is reelected to a third term by 18 points.


    Democrats also made out well in House, gaining nearly a dozen seats. Republicans lost far fewer seats then expected thanks the the fact that Wallace voters split 60-40 for Republican congressional candidates. Among the few Republican gains were Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.).


    95th Congress (1977-79)


    President pro temp: James Eastland
    Senate Majority Leader: Ted Kennedy
    Senate Majority Whip: Robert Byrd

    Senate Minority Leader: Howard Baker
    Senate Majority Whip: Bob Finch

    House of Representatives

    Speaker of the House: Tip O'Neill

    House Majority Leader: Jim Wright
    House Majority Whip: John Brademas

    House Minority Leader: John Rhodes
    House Minority Whip: Robert Michael

    Watching from California, former Congressman, Senator, Vice President, and Secretary of State Richard M. Nixon took it all in. He had assumed that Romney would still pull out a win for most of the campaign but had come around after Romney's refusal to dump Rockefeller and his criticism of Reagan. Nixon started preparing for a run in 1980 even before Election Day 1976. While he traveled across California and a few other states for several candidates, he kept a lower profile than previous campaigns.

    A post-election poll, showed that had Nixon been the GOP nominee he would have defeated Humphrey easily in California and won an electoral college landslide without Wallace in the race.

    Nixon also understood the importance of having Wallace on board in 1980.

    While it would not be known until many years later, it had been Nixon who had served as an emissary to Wallace in 1968 to get him to drop out of the race.

    The first call Nixon placed on the day after the election and the arguably the first in the "Greatest Comeback" was to......George Corley Wallace.......It was time to plan.

    Infoboxes by Pug
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2017
  3. HaroldGodwinson Well-Known Member

    May 19, 2017


    President Humphrey introduces a plan for expansion of the Reagan era welfare reforms, as well as a plan for health care which would require individuals to purchase health insurance and offered a public option for the poor. Humphrey's plan meet with opposition from most Senate Republicans as well as southern Democrats.

    Humphrey took to the road to sell his plan but for forced to cancel is trip when his health took a turn for the worse.

    Humphrey's doctors diagnosed him with bladder cancer. Humphrey was told that he had a good chance of survival but it would require a much less stressful schedule. Humphrey was urged by many of his aides to stay on as president with a scaled-back role, but Humphrey decided that he country needed a full time president and announced his resignation on August 8, 1977.

    As the new President, Jimmy Carter's first decision was to pick a Vice President. Since four of the last eight vice presidents had succeeded to the presidency the appointment was very important. Carter got his shortlist down to Bobby Kennedy, Scoop Jackson, John Glenn, and Walter Mondale. Kennedy initially expressed interest in the job, he ultimately declined. Scoop Jackson and John Glenn were both solid picks but Carter ultimately decided to pick Mondale because of his connection to Humphrey, as well his liberal credentials and Carter finding him a good personal fit.

    Carter's fiscal conservatism made him less inclined to pass massive to social welfare programs, but he felt obliged to continue the stricken Humphrey's plans.

    Richard Nixon prepares to run in 1980, building up support around the country and the various wings of the GOP.


    In the spring of 1978, Congress passed Full Employment and Balanced Growth Act, also known as the "Kennedy-Hawkins Act".

    While running for president, Carter had proposed health care reform that included key features of the bipartisan bill for universal national health insurance sponsored by Senator Ted Kennedy (D-MA). On taking office, Carter rejected Kennedy's healthcare proposal due to its cost to the federal government, and instead favored incremental reforms. Kennedy and Carter met repeatedly in 1978 to produce a compromise bill, but were unable to agree on a framework.

    Despite Carter's relative lack of major accomplishments in domestic policy, he had greater success abroad.

    In mid-1978, Carter helped broker the Camp David Accords between Israel and Egypt.

    In the midterms, Nixon campaigned aggressively for Republicans and hoped that a Republican victory would serve as springboard for 1980.

    In the end, the Democrats retained the Senate. The GOP made gains in Iowa, Maine, Minnesota (Special), Minnesota, Mississippi, New Hampshire, South Dakota, and West Virginia*. Republicans also held seats in in Kentucky*, Michigan*, and Montana*, Oklahoma*, and Virginia. Democrats gained seats in Delaware, Massachusetts, Nebraska, New Jersey, and Tennessee*, where Howard Baker retired and was succeeded by Albert Gore Jr.

    Senate candidate Pat Buchanan during a debate

    Among the most interesting races of the year, was the election of former White House Chief of Staff Pat Buchanan to the U.S. Senate from Virginia, having been selected as the replacement nominee after the death of Richard Obenshain.


    Democrats also retained the House despite losing 13 seats to the Republicans. House Majority Whip John Brademas lost his seat in a surprise upset as well.

    Notable freshmen included George W. Bush (R-Tx.), Dick Cheney (R-Wy.), Tom Pauken (R-Tx.), and Geraldine Ferraro (D-N.Y.).


    Shortly after the midterms, the lame duck Congress defeated Carter's Panama Canal Treaty by a 51-49 margin. A debate held during the ratification period between Richard Nixon and William F. Buckley was widely watched and helped bolster Nixon support among conservatives due to his opposition to the treaty.

    96th Congress (1979-81)


    President pro temp: Warren Magnuson
    Senate Majority Leader: Ted Kennedy
    Senate Majority Whip: Robert Byrd

    Senate Minority Leader: Bob Finch
    Senate Majority Whip: Ted Stevens

    House of Representatives

    Speaker of the House: Tip O'Neill
    House Majority Leader: Jim Wright
    House Majority Whip: John Brademas

    House Minority Leader: John Rhodes
    House Minority Whip: Robert Michael

    Richard Nixon campaigning in South Carolina


    President Carter's reorganization efforts meet with only partial as the attempt to separated the Department of Health, Education and Welfare into the Department of Education and the Department of Health and Human Services was defeated thanks to conservative opposition. Carter also pushed for and signed the Ethics in Government Act, which established ethics guidelines for executive branch officials and established the Office of the Independent Counsel, which could independently investigate corruption.

    Carter's lack of accomplishments in implementing the Humphrey agenda and the economic stagnation of his presidency caused many liberal Democrats to look for a better candidate in 1980. Senate Majority Leader Ted Kennedy urged his brother to run for president against Carter, Senator Bobby Kennedy had skipped the 1972 elections because he saw it as unwinable. He jumped into the 1976 race at the convention as a compromise candidate but was narrowly defeated by Hubert Humphrey. He was seen as Humphrey's successor by many Democrats. In his mid-50s, Kennedy understood that time was running out and he needed to make a decision. With polls showing him running ahead of Carter, Kennedy decided to throw his hat in the ring and challenge Carter. Although Kennedy's support for the Reagan era welfare reform programs met with hostility from some on the left, he was the liberal favorite and a formidable challenger to Carter. Carter also faced challenges from California Governor Jerry Brown and for Mississippi Governor Cliff Finch.


    Former Secretary of State Richard Nixon was seen as the heavy favorite for the 1980 Republican nomination and had spent the last two years building up his political network. Nixon's main competition for the nomination was former Treasury Secretary and Texas Governor John Connally and former Senate Majority Leader Howard Baker of Tennessee. Also running were Congressmen John Anderson and Phil Crane and former CIA Director George Bush, and former California Governor Ed Reinecke and Senator Sam Yorty of California.

    Kennedy lead Carter in the polls throughout the summer and fall and it wasn't until they Iran Hostage Crisis that Carter began to gain on Kennedy.


    1980 Democratic Nomination

    In a surprise upset, Carter beat Kennedy in Iowa 47-42%.

    In New Hampshire, Kennedy won over Carter 48-37% and never looked back.

    Carter won the South, but Kennedy won almost everywhere else.

    Blue-Kennedy Red-Carter

    At the convention in NYC, Kennedy beat Carter on the first ballot 1,700-1,599. Kennedy picked former Mississippi Governor Cliff Finch as his running mate.


    Senate Majority Leader Ted Kennedy nominating his brother for president.

    1980 Republican Nomination

    Nixon was the front-runner going into the Iowa caucus. Nixon had campaign aggressively in the state and it paid off. Nixon won Iowa by over 15% with Crane and Bush in second and third.

    Nixon won New Hampshire by a two-to-one margin and won every primary thereafter.


    At the Republican National Convention in Detroit, Nixon's nomination was assured. The main highlight of the convention was Nixon's choice of a running-mate. Nixon's final VP list consisted of Howard Baker, Pat Buchanan, John Connally, Phil Crane, Bob Dole. In the end, Nixon decided he needed a conservative and narrowed it down to Crane, Connally and Buchanan. Nixon decided not to go with either of his primary rivals and picked his former speechwriter, turned White Chief of Staff and current U.S. Senator Pat Buchanan as his running-mate.

    1980 - General Election

    The 1980 election is considered by some to be a realigning election, reaching a climate of confrontation practically not seen since 1932. Kennedy emphasized his record as a legislator, peacemaker, and said Nixon's election would threaten civil rights and social programs that stretched back to the New Deal. Nixon promised a restoration of the nation's military strength, at the same time 60% of Americans polled felt defense spending was too low. Nixon also promised an end to "'trust me' government" and to restore economic health by implementing a supply-side economic policy.

    On the issue of women's rights there was much division. After a bitter Convention fight between Republican feminists and anti-feminists the Republican Party dropped their forty-year endorsement of the ERA. Nixon, however, announced his dedication to women's rights and his intention to, if elected, appoint women to his cabinet and the first female justice to the Supreme Court. He also pledged to work with all 50 state governors to combat discrimination against women and to equalize federal laws as an alternative to the ERA. Nixon also gave an endorsement of women's rights in his nomination acceptance speech.

    Meanwhile, Kennedy was burdened by a continued weak economy, the bitter primary with Carter, and the Iran hostage crisis.

    An important event in the 1980 presidential campaign was the three presidential debates. After trailing Kennedy by 4 points among registered voters (and by 2 points among likely voters) right before their first debate debate, Nixon moved into a 3-point lead among likely voters immediately afterward. Kennedy regained some ground in the second debate and the Nixon was seen as the winner in the third debate.

    Election Night was not a close as many expected. Nixon easily won both the popular and electoral vote.


    Nixon's coattails helped the GOP win control of Congress.

    The Republicans gained a net of 10 seats from the Democrats and gained control of the Senate, 58–42. Majority and minority leaders Robert Byrd and Bob Finch exchanged places.

    Without losing any seats, the Republicans took open seats in Alabama and Alaska, and unseated six incumbents: Herman Talmadge (D-GA), Frank Church (D-ID), Birch E. Bayh II (D-IN), John Culver (D-IA), John A. Durkin (D-NH), Robert Morgan (D-NC), 1972 presidential nominee George S. McGovern (D-SD), and Warren Magnuson (D-WA). Republicans also held valuable seats in California* and Florida. Democrats managed to hold seats in closes states like Colorado, New York*, Vermont, and Wisconsin*.

    After the election, Senate Majority Leader Ted Kennedy stepped down and was replaced by Senator Robert Byrd.


    The GOP gained 22 seats in the House of Representatives, winning back the majority after six years in the minority.

    97th Congress (1981-83)


    President pro temp: Strom Thurmond
    Senate Majority Leader: Bob Finch
    Senate Majority Whip: Ted Stevens

    Senate Minority Leader: Robert Byrd
    Senate Majority Whip: Daniel Inouye

    House of Representatives

    Speaker of the House: John Rhodes
    House Majority Leader: Guy Vander Jagt
    House Majority Whip: Trent Lott

    House Minority Leader: Tip O'Neill
    House Minority Whip: Jim Wright

    Infoboxes by Pug
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2017
  4. HaroldGodwinson Well-Known Member

    May 19, 2017
    I have done some more research on Nixon in the 1980's and 90's and have decided to continue this thread through Nixon's Presidency.
  5. HaroldGodwinson Well-Known Member

    May 19, 2017


    Key members of Nixon's first cabinet included;

    Vice President: Patrick J. Buchanan
    Secretary of State: George H.W. Bush
    Secretary of Treasury: William Simon
    Secretary of Defense: Caspar Weinberger
    Attorney General: John B. Connally
    National Security Adviser: Alexander Haig
    White House Chief of Staff: Howard Baker

    President Nixon and the new Republican Congress pass hundreds of pieces of legislation on a wide range of polices. These included a massive tax cut, cuts in welfare spending. President Nixon brings back the Strategic Defense of Initiative (SDI) which the Carter administration had made large cuts in.

    In March, President Nixon is shot by John Hinckley, Jr. Nixon only suffers a flesh wound. After the killings of President Kennedy and President Reagan, Nixon escape from death causes a national relief and a feeling that the painful years of the 60's and 70's were behind them. After the assassination attempt, Nixon endorsed more gun control legislation but backed off after hard push back from his base.

    Nixon also appoints Sandra Day O'Conner and Antinon Scalia to the Supreme Court to replace Justices Harrison and Stewart.


    The economic recession causes Nixon's approvals to drop and Democrats retake the House of Representatives in the midterms, while the Republicans held the Senate. In California, Governor Jerry Brown narrowly loses re-election to Lt. Governor Mike Curb.


    98th Congress (1983-85)


    President pro temp: Storm Thurmond
    Senate Majority Leader: Bob Finch
    Senate Majority Whip: Ted Stevens

    Senate Minority Leader: Robert Byrd
    Senate Minority Whip: Daniel Inouye

    House of Representatives

    Speaker of the House: Tip O'Neill
    House Majority Leader: Jim Wright
    House Majority Whip: Tom Foley

    House Minority Leader: Guy Vander Jagt
    House Minority Whip: Bob Michael


    President Nixon works with Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher to end the Grenada Hostage Crisis peacefully.

    President Nixon decides not to deploy Marines to Lebenon.

    The economy begins to recover and will eventually create more than 20 million jobs and enjoy the longest peacetime economic expansion in the 20th Century.


    1984 Democratic Nomination
    • Gary Hart, U.S. senator from Colorado
    • Walter Mondale, former Vice President and former U.S. senator from Minnesota
    • Daniel Patrick Moynihan, former Governor of New York
    • Shirly Chisholm, U.S. senator from New
    • John Glenn, U.S. senator from Ohio
    • Reubin Askew, former Governor of Florida
    • Ernest Hollings, U.S. senator from South Carolina
    Mondale, Moynihan and Glenn are seen as front-runners.

    Mondale win Iowa, with Moynihan second and Hart third.

    In New Hampshire, Hart wins with Moynihan a close second and Mondale third.

    The primaries continue with Mondale, Hart, Moynihan, and Chisholm all winning primaries.

    Yellow-Hart Red-Mondale Blue-Moynihan Green-Chisholm

    At the convention in San Francisco, no candidate held a majority.

    Hart led on the first and second ballot, followed by Mondale, Moynihan, and Chisholm. Moynihan dropped out after the second ballot and endorsed Hart. Mondale counted by securing Chisholm's endorsement after promising to name a black VP.

    Hart won the nomination on the third ballot by just 34 votes.
    To appeal to the South, Hart picked Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton as his running-mate.

    The 1984 Democratic Ticket

    1984 Republican Nomination

    President Nixon ran unopposed in the Republican primaries. Texas Congressman Ron Paul considered running against Nixon but ultimately decided against it.

    The 1984 Republican Ticket

    1984 General Election

    The general election contrasted the 71-year-old veteran politico Nixon with the 47-year old Colorado Senator. Hart and Clinton campaigned as the candidates of change and youth, while Nixon campaigned on this experience and the strong economy. Nixon's Campaign Manager Lee Atwater ran a scorched-earth campaign against Hart and Clinton. The presidential debates were remarkably high-toned by comparison with the rest of the campaign. The VP debate between Buchanan and Clinton saw many more attacks on both sides.

    In the end, Nixon won in a landslide in both the popular and electoral vote.


    The Republicans held on to their majority in the Senate, but the Democrats gained seats in Illinois, Iowa, and Montana. In Texas, Congressman Tom Pauken was elected to the Senate to succeed John Tower.

    The Republicans gained seats in the House but the Democrats retained the majority.

    99th Congress (1985-87)


    President pro temp: Storm Thurmond
    Senate Majority Leader: Bob Finch
    Senate Majority Whip: Ted Stevens

    Senate Minority Leader: Robert Byrd
    Senate Minority Whip: Daniel Inouye

    House of Representatives

    Speaker of the House: Tip O'Neill
    House Majority Leader: Jim Wright
    House Majority Whip: Tom Foley

    House Minority Leader: Guy Vander Jagt
    House Minority Whip: Bob Michael


    Key members of Nixon's second cabinet included;

    Vice President: Patrick J. Buchanan
    Secretary of State: John B. Connally
    Secretary of Treasury: James Baker
    Secretary of Defense: Caspar Weinberger
    Attorney General: Richard Lewis Thornburgh
    National Security Adviser: Frank Carlucci
    White House Chief of Staff: Alexander Haig

    In his second term, Nixon set out to deal with USSR and achieve a comprehensive reform and restructuring of the executive branch.

    Congress passed major tax reform amd budgets acts in 1985, which Nixon signed enthusiastically.

    Nixon also meet with Soviet Premier Mikail Gorbachev in Geneva, Switzerland in 1985 to discuss arms control. The international press had fallen in love with Gorbachev, but Nixon we not beguiled and held firm in defending American interests.


    President Nixon appoints Anthony Kennedy to the Supreme Court.

    Nixon rejects suggestions that the US trade arms for hostages through in Iran and instead authorizes the CIA to engage to clandestine operations to rescue the hostages and take hostages to exchange.

    The midterms result in Democratic gains in the Congress.

    The Democrats gained nine seats in Washington, Nevada, North Dakota, South Dakota, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, North Carolina, and Maryland. The Republicans gained two seats in Missouri and New York (replacing the retiring Shirley Chisholm).

    The Democrats also gained five seats in the House. Speaker Tip O'Neill retired and was succeeded by House Majority Leader Jim Wright.

    99th Congress (1987-89)


    President pro temp: Storm Thurmond
    Senate Majority Leader: Bob Finch
    Senate Majority Whip: Ted Stevens

    Senate Minority Leader: Robert Byrd
    Senate Minority Whip: Daniel Inouye

    House of Representatives

    Speaker of the House: Jim Wright
    House Majority Leader: Tom Foley
    House Majority Whip: Tony Coelho

    House Minority Leader: Guy Vander Jagt
    House Minority Whip: Bob Michael
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2017