Does Bush win 2004?

  • Yes, in a landslide

    Votes: 38 65.5%
  • Yes, more than otl

    Votes: 7 12.1%
  • Yes, similar margin to otl

    Votes: 4 6.9%
  • No, close election

    Votes: 6 10.3%
  • No, loses in a landslide

    Votes: 3 5.2%

  • Total voters
    58
Bush is definitely gonna win cuz rallying around the flag, unless he does horrible blunders like admitting in public that the CIA had warned him beforehand. He'd probably declare war on Iraq in late October IMO. Wonder if Rove and co. can paint Howard Dean (if he gets the nom) as an unpatriotic pacifist.
 
It would probably have been leaked that the CIA knew about it 20 years in advance, and that would destroy Bush's campaign completely.
 
I could see Bush getting a large temporary boost, but when the patriotism panic wears off and people begin thinking, it’s gonna begins the backlash. Combined with the Iraq War happening years later and then in top of the Great Recession, it’s gonna be a clusterfuck for the GOP.

I am inclined to agree, but I would argue that September 11th - Election Day is not enough time for it to wear off. The shock and pain will be there for awhile. 9/11/02 or 9/11/03 -- then you have enough time for questions about accountability to percolate, a report to come out, etc.

But that's not going to happen in 2 months.
 
Bush is definitely gonna win cuz rallying around the flag, unless he does horrible blunders like admitting in public that the CIA had warned him beforehand. He'd probably declare war on Iraq in late October IMO. Wonder if Rove and co. can paint Howard Dean (if he gets the nom) as an unpatriotic pacifist.

Problem is that Bush would be held more responsible than IOTL, especially if measures like forming the Department of Homeland Security were done by this point. Problem is he has to bank on the patriotism attempt not backfiring because people have a lack of trust in him.

Problem is trying to predict the options of people panicking and assuming that patriotism will make Bush automatically look good against his opponents.

Problem is if we goes to Iraq and not Afghanistan, then that’s really gonna cause some problems down the line for him.
 
I am inclined to agree, but I would argue that September 11th - Election Day is not enough time for it to wear off. The shock and pain will be there for awhile. 9/11/02 or 9/11/03 -- then you have enough time for questions about accountability to percolate, a report to come out, etc.

But that's not going to happen in 2 months.

Does depend on how the media spins it. People in crisis to resort to scapegoating after all and if someone starts the chain to question how this happened and floats up Bush, it could snowball into blaming his ineptitude for not protecting America adequately. Especially if Bush already earned a bad reputation and thus there’s an outlet for rage there besides the perpetrator
 
Does depend on how the media spins it. People in crisis to resort to scapegoating after all and if someone starts the chain to question how this happened and floats up Bush, it could snowball into blaming his ineptitude for not protecting America adequately. Especially if Bush already earned a bad reputation and thus there’s an outlet for rage there besides the perpetrator

Any attempt to look inwards and blame Americans for the attack is simply not going to land in the two months after the attack. I vividly recall Ron Paul getting shouted down for saying American foreign policy bore some responsibility ... in the 2008 primary debates.
 
Any attempt to look inwards and blame Americans for the attack is simply not going to land in the two months after the attack. I vividly recall Ron Paul getting shouted down for saying American foreign policy bore some responsibility ... in the 2008 primary debates

Perhaps though thinking the situations would be exactly the same is problematic, especially since there’s also the issue of the economy going on. If the Recession follows soon after Iraq War, it’s gonna be a painful blowback.
 
Perhaps though thinking the situations would be exactly the same is problematic, especially since there’s also the issue of the economy going on. If the Recession follows soon after Iraq War, it’s gonna be a painful blowback.

I think we're disagreeing over the speed of the outcome, not the outcome. While I definitely think the overall response would be different - more critical of Bush admin failures, more oversight - I don't think you can overcome the shock of a parallel 9/11 (the Twin Towers falling, the Pentagon being struck, the Capitol or White House narrowly missing destruction) within 2 months. Especially if Bush tours the site and delivers a "we hear you" moment a la our timeline.

10 days after 9/11/01, Bush's approval rating was 90%. It didn't fall below 60% until January 2003.

Even if the ~40% spike that Bush had in our timeline is reduced to an increase of 20% (which I don't think is fair given the rally around the flag effect's documented history), unless Bush is in the low-30's at the time of the attack (which seems hard to believe even without a War on Terror), he's going to be in the 60%-ish range in November of 2004 as people head to the polls. And I don't think you're going to have people come around to the idea of changing Commander-in-Chief weeks after the most devastating terrorist attack.

Furthermore, I think Bush has inherent advantages by being the incumbent. Kerry will have to suspend his campaign (as will Bush), but Bush will likely have a tour of the rubble, an Oval Office address, and an address to an emergency joint session. And assuming he declares war on Afghanistan --- it's hard to see how all of that earned media time can be matched by Kerry. In fact, the Bush campaign may decline to participate in debates citing the president's focus on national security (though I don't necessarily think this is the case).

I agree that within a year, this will wear off (at a speed faster than OTL), that eventually people will consider Bush's administration dropped the ball to some extent, that there will eventually be Congressional investigations -- that they may even result in high-level resignations. I just don't think it can happen in less than 2 months. Our country's inclination is not to immediately respond to tragedy with a critical eye. Instead, we generally come together.
 
I think we're disagreeing over the speed of the outcome, not the outcome. While I definitely think the overall response would be different - more critical of Bush admin failures, more oversight - I don't think you can overcome the shock of a parallel 9/11 (the Twin Towers falling, the Pentagon being struck, the Capitol or White House narrowly missing destruction) within 2 months. Especially if Bush tours the site and delivers a "we hear you" moment a la our timeline.

10 days after 9/11/01, Bush's approval rating was 90%. It didn't fall below 60% until January 2003.

Even if the ~40% spike that Bush had in our timeline is reduced to an increase of 20% (which I don't think is fair given the rally around the flag effect's documented history), unless Bush is in the low-30's at the time of the attack (which seems hard to believe even without a War on Terror), he's going to be in the 60%-ish range in November of 2004 as people head to the polls. And I don't think you're going to have people come around to the idea of changing Commander-in-Chief weeks after the most devastating terrorist attack.

Furthermore, I think Bush has inherent advantages by being the incumbent. Kerry will have to suspend his campaign (as will Bush), but Bush will likely have a tour of the rubble, an Oval Office address, and an address to an emergency joint session. And assuming he declares war on Afghanistan --- it's hard to see how all of that earned media time can be matched by Kerry. In fact, the Bush campaign may decline to participate in debates citing the president's focus on national security (though I don't necessarily think this is the case).

I agree that within a year, this will wear off (at a speed faster than OTL), that eventually people will consider Bush's administration dropped the ball to some extent, that there will eventually be Congressional investigations -- that they may even result in high-level resignations. I just don't think it can happen in less than 2 months. Our country's inclination is not to immediately respond to tragedy with a critical eye. Instead, we generally come together.

Somewhat yes, Though this is operating under the assumption that Kerry would be the nominee against Bush by September and not someone else. And while rally under the flag does work, that doesn't mean the Democrats can't use it to their advantage as well. I mean it's September. Historical precedent works for sure, but alot can change in 3 years, so I suppose everything happening in exact the same way would be pretty nuts.

I do see the suspensions happening and that would give Bush the advantage, but if people already have preconcieved opinions, then things may go a bit pear-shaped. Bush declining in debates could be interesting. If he does go to the debates, then the attack would be one of the things to debated because security will become paramount. Though, of course, it could be glossed over to not be discussed, but, it's hard to predict.

Of course, the post did mention sometime during before the election in 2004 so that actually gives us some interesting factors to consider. If it happened earlier in 2004, then I could see Kerry winning off military record and it would give Bush the opportunity to earn solid points by going over to deal with the problem though at the same time, with the invasion of Afghanistan. Additionally, if it happened earlier in the year, then as the invasion is happening and the pressure starts dying down, questions may be asked, especially if Bush botches it up.

If they get Bid Laden before he escapes, that pretty much seals it for Bush in terms of victory. If he escapes though... then that might be a pretty big blow.

Wait, I just realized, how do the September Anthrax events of 2001 shape this?
 
I think a lot would have depended upon whether Bush went to war with Iraq before the 9/11 attack. If the US were already at war with Iraq I believe a anti war movement would have developed that would have helped Kerry. He got away with Iraq in part by blaming them for supporting the 9/11 attacks.
 
I think a lot would have depended upon whether Bush went to war with Iraq before the 9/11 attack. If the US were already at war with Iraq I believe a anti war movement would have developed that would have helped Kerry. He got away with Iraq in part by blaming them for supporting the 9/11 attacks.

Right. In fact, 9/11 2004 could backfire on him since it would make him look incompetant for not paying attention and failing to protect the nation.
 
Of course, the post did mention sometime during before the election in 2004 so that actually gives us some interesting factors to consider.
Yea. Of course my main focus was towards 9/11/04 but I’m still curious about a potential 2/11/04, 6/11/04, or whatever. So if someone wants to talk about 9/11 happening earlier in the year feel free, but I am most curious about 9/11/04 :)
 
Yea. Of course my main focus was towards 9/11/04 but I’m still curious about a potential 2/11/04, 6/11/04, or whatever. So if someone wants to talk about 9/11 happening earlier in the year feel free, but I am most curious about 9/11/04 :)
If it was 7/11/04, a certain someone could legitimately claim they were there on 7/11.
 
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