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1  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: July 30, 2015, 09:00:42 pm
Lol Ho'kee is a bastard.

But I bet you're still pulling for him. Grin

Just re-readed the whole thing. Keep it coming Smiley

Thanks man. Smiley I always considered you to be a good peer due to your creativity, and it's encouraging that you continue to find my work well.
2  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Opinion of #DeflateGate? on: July 28, 2015, 08:55:22 pm
Bump

3  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Regional Governments / Re: NE1: Northeast Newspaper Act (debating) on: July 26, 2015, 01:58:33 pm
This has been tried and repealed before.
4  About this Site / How To / How To FAQ on: July 26, 2015, 01:41:58 pm
While this is not a high traffic board, I have observed over the years that the same questions tend to get asked over the years "how do I put my PM score under my account?" or "why can't I post maps?"

Over the next week I'm going to use this space to make a comprehensive FAQ, and then maybe I can delete some of the old duplicate threads to tidy this place up. Smiley
5  About this Site / The Atlas / Re: Proposal for Election What-ifs on: July 26, 2015, 11:04:43 am
BUMP! Now that you're back in the saddle, Dave.

The information is obviously outdated but I can't imagine that the statistics have improved much.

Also, the Interactive Timeline board has more or less been a wasteland and could probably be negotiated into the mix.
6  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Happy National Tequila Day! on: July 26, 2015, 12:11:06 am
Today, July 24 is National Tequila Day.  How will you guys be celebrating this glorious day?  

By drinking whiskey.

Your signature can go to hell Smiley

Tongue

7  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Voting Booth / Re: Northeast Gubernatorial Special Election and Referenda - July 2015 on: July 24, 2015, 06:25:01 pm
[1] Oakvale
[2] SWE
[3] Write-in: hantheguitarman

Assembly Inactivity: Aye
Save the Animals: No
8  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Happy National Tequila Day! on: July 24, 2015, 05:57:39 pm
Today, July 24 is National Tequila Day.  How will you guys be celebrating this glorious day? 

By drinking whiskey.
9  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: New Register Thread on: July 23, 2015, 05:08:19 pm
dallasfan65
Vote Oakvale For An Independent Northeast
Massachusetts
10  Forum Community / Mock Parliment / Re: The Social Liberals on: July 21, 2015, 08:39:22 pm
Was in the Conservatives, but this seems like a better fit. Grin
11  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: July 21, 2015, 12:13:13 am
Michigan: Polling has favored Republicans by miles from the get-go. The decline of the auto industry has made this state sour on Democrats in a catastrophic way, and Bentsen's actions as President have done nothing to mitigate that fact. However, the Republican response to the labor riots that resulted in several deaths have been equally tone-deaf, and Areus Ho'kee is in agreement with Bentsen on the issue of tariffs, making them fumble a blow-out. The WMP will do well here, but Republicans should hold the state.

Minnesota: Incidentally, Republicans have tended to do better in the Minneapolis metro, while Democrats have done better in rural areas. One area where Bentsen has suffered in particular is in the Great Lakes states, and Ho'kee has made a strong effort to strengthen Republican margins here.

Mississippi: For much of the campaign, this was considered a two-man race between President Bentsen and Paul Laxalt. Polls showed this state as a toss-up at one point, but Patton Wyde's last month efforts on behalf of the President have helped soften any hard feelings his supporters had about the primary.

Missouri: Though strongly Democratic, the national swing in opinion has drawn this state into contention. Ho'kee performs well enough in the St. Louis suburbs, and ancestral Republican voting in the  plains area may be enough to push him over the edge.

Montana: Scott Westman, the state's most influential politician, has been mum on the election. While Bentsen plays well in folksy areas that have traditionally voted for old school Democrats, Ho'kee is popular in reservations and liberal communities like Billings. Ho'kee is favored.

Nebraska: This is a state that should be up for grabs: the previous Democratic administration passed a large agricultural spending bill that benefited this state, which was vehemently opposed by Ho'kee. Both of its current Senators are Democrats, and Paul Laxalt was even within striking distance at one point. However, Bentsen's collapse and this state's voting pattern should keep it for Republicans.

Nevada: Befitting of a state known for its casinos, the odds on this outcome have spun like a roulette. Upon Laxalt's declaration, he was in a tie with Ho'kee. After the first debate, polls showed Ho'kee narrowly ahead, but President Bentsen's implosion has propelled Laxalt back into contention. Many suspect that the battle lines will be drawn between rural Nevada and Las Vegas, with Reno as a battleground.

New Hampshire: Areus Ho'kee orchestrated his comeback in the Republican primary here. Republicans have captured both Senate seats in just two cycles. Paul Laxalt picked former Governor Meldrim Thomson in hopes of bring presence to the Working Man's Party in the Northeast, but it's been a non-starter. For Ho'kee.

New Jersey: Though Democrats have been a competitive force here in the Sixties and Seventies, Republicans have been dominant in the past few election cycles, and polls have consistently showed Ho'kee ahead.

New Mexico: Bentsen's close proximity to this state has given him a better edge here than his predecessor, but Ho'kee has been aggressive with Latino voters and western states in general.

New York: Under the present circumstances, Mark Hatfield would have carried this state with nearly two-thirds of the vote. However, the Conservative Party of New York, an affiliate of the Working Man's Party, is actively working for Paul Laxalt. And as if the Conservative Party's sway is not enough, President Bentsen's running mate is Daniel Patrick Moynihan. Bentsen should win the Empire State, although polls have this state tight.

North Carolina: Paul Laxalt has cut into Bentsen's rural numbers, but the latter's strongest region has been the Upper South, and he is comfortably ahead.

North Dakota: Some backwater voters are showing support for Laxalt, but polls don't indicate that this state will break with its Republican tradition.

Ohio: Scoop Jackson got over sixty percent of the vote here in his first run for President. While Bentsen's folksiness makes him a much better fit for the state than Ho'kee, his national decline and Republican strength in Cincinnatti tip the scales in favor of Ho'kee.

Oklahoma: This state was a convincing rout for President Jackson in 1984, but Bentsen has been having heartburn. While Ho'kee has been somewhat toxic in plains areas, his Navajo blood has helped him personally identify with the electorate, a majority of which identifies as Native American. Coupling that with Oklahoma's vibrant areas of OKC and Tulsa, and the candidacy of Paul Laxalt, we predict that Ho'kee will pull off a narrow upset in this state.

Oregon: Paul Laxalt's brand of conservatism could erode Republican numbers in Eastern Oregon, but the Ho'kee-led Republican wave of 1986 was particularly dominant in Democratic turf on the coast, and we suspect he'll repeat that success.

Pennsylvania: Mark Hatfield won this state by a hair. The Philadelphia suburbs are every bit as Republican as they were four years ago, and Ho'kee stumped in the city itself several times. Ho'kee is a poor fit for the rural part of the state and will likely bleed voters to Paul Laxalt, but Bentsen's toxicity and the Detroit riots should lead to some bleeding in the Pittsburgh area as well. Ho'kee is favored here.

Rhode Island Between stronger Democratic machinery, a lack of suburban clusters, and greater population density, this state has been much more favorable to Democrats than anywhere else in New England. Bentsen has led for most of the election cycle, but his sudden decline in polling has drifted the state toward Ho'kee.

South Carolina: Bentsen's numbers were threatened only during his deepest morass, but he's now comfortably ahead.

South Dakota: Two candidates like Paul Laxalt and President Bentsen ought to do well in a rural state like this. However, Ho'kee is dominate both in the major cities and in reservation counties. Ho'kee is a strong favorite here.

Tennessee: Baker won this state based on being a favorite son, and Ho'kee does okay in the traditionally Republican city of Knoxville. However, Bentsen dominates everywhere else.

Texas: The President has represented this state in the Senate, and his predecessor won overwhelmingly both times here. However, this state has drifted towards Republicans on the margin with the growth of areas such as Dallas and Houston. Still, these communities may be averse to Areus Ho'kee's perceived environmentalism, and other voters may be repelled by his ethnicity. Paul Laxalt is a mitigating factor, and while he may hurt the President with yellow dog Democrats, he should win this state.

Utah: Utah has been a prime target of the Working Man's Party. While Laxalt has been competitive here for most of the election cycle, Bentsen's current decline has put Ho'kee in a good position to make up ground in Salt Lake City. The fundamentals favor Ho'kee, but this could be anybody's game.

Vermont: Ho'kee, by a lot.

Virginia: Virginia's budding suburbs in the Fairfax area have been a boon to statewide Republicans, and helped President Ford win the state in 1976. However, one important constituency in these suburbs is defense contractors; and Ho'kee's pacifism has not made him many friends amongst Virginia voters. Bentsen will carry this state, though he would not against most other hypothetical nominees.

Washington: Scoop Jackson was lucky to win this state in 1984, despite having represented it for decades. The defense industry is strong here and would be a boon to President Bentsen, but the ethics probe has negated most of that competitive edge in this state. The Working Man's Party is popular in Eastern Washington, but Ho'kee should still carry this state.

West Virginia: This state has been solidly Democratic for as long as some of its residents have been alive, having only voted Republican twice since the Great Depression. While Laxalt might apply a nominal amount of pressure, Ho'kee's urbane, hepcat brand of politics are a non-starter here.

Wisconsin: Picking Dreyfus undoubtedly helped here. Bentsen has been suffering in the Great Lakes, and Ho'kee's more liberal attitude toward alcohol can only help more than hurt, if it's to have any effect. Ho'kee does well in rural, suburban, and even urban Wisconsin.

Wyoming: The natural gas boon made this state seem like fertile pastures for Democrats in 1984, but Jackson didn't do significantly better here than four years ago. Laxalt could make this fluid, but with only three electoral votes it has little to offer, and Ho'kee is favored.
12  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: July 21, 2015, 12:12:18 am
HOW THE STATES WILL GO - TIME
October 23rd, 1988

Alabama: This state has potential to be the wildcard of this election. Support amongst President Bentsen amongst blacks have been tepid, given his lack of action on welfare programs and support of the War in Iran, which is deeply unpopular with the black community. Meanwhile, conservative Southerners have been flocking toward the Laxalt campaign in repudiation of the Big Two. Ho'kee has made a pump fake in this state, spending money on turnout operations in Birmingham and Mobile. Jefferson Dent's poor health and general apathy toward his campaign has hindered any sincere chances of carrying this state, while the Working Man's Party has been looking for an upset. However, we expect President Bentsen to edge a victory here.

Alaska: Areus Ho'kee's investment in this state during the Republican primary paid dividends, adding to his delegate total and establishing him as a front-runner. Since then, he hasn't made any effort here, expecting that the gravity of Bentsen's unpopularity would bring the state in his column. On the other hand, Laxalt has made effort here, but Ho'kee's favored on the margin.

Arizona: This state has had a nearly perfect Republican voting streak since 1952. Ho'kee's biggest threat here was actually Paul Laxalt, as polling had this state at a three-way tie upon Laxalt's declaration. However, the trajectory that this election has taken and Ho'kee's own campaign have drawn this into his own column. Senator DeConcini, the conservative Democrat running for reelection, is on his own.

Arkansas: This state has been a Democratic mainstay since Reconstruction, and has only voted Republican once this century. Scoop Jackson won a combined average of two-thirds of the vote in his two elections here. Cultural issues and Bentsen's collapse may drive some voters toward Laxalt, but this is one of the few states the President can count on.

California: This state has voted Democratic once since 1964, and that was as part of Scoop Jackson's landslide election. Since then, this state has elected two Republican Senators and carried for Mark Hatfield. What's more is that this state's Democratic Party is dysfunctional and ineffective. President Bentsen briefly had life here when Paul Laxalt's surge dragged Ho'kee down, but his collapse in October has erased that. For Ho'kee.

Colorado: Paul Laxalt has some popularity in rural communities on the fringes, but Areus Ho'kee is the sole benefactor of Bentsen's collapse in this state.

Connecticut: Scoop Jackson won this state in 1980, and it was surprisingly competitive in 1976. Support for Bentsen in Hartford has tepid, and state Democrats were decimated in the 1986 election, with young Republican Alice Luce winning the Governor's mansion. Ho'kee, by a bit.

Delaware: This state has buoyed with national polling for most of the election, and we think Ho'kee's urban-centered platform works just fine in Dover.

Florida: Domestic oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico is seen by many Floridians as a potential economic boom, and Hatfield was stuffed out in this state four years ago. These factors, compounding with Ho'kee's poor showing in the Republican primary, led him to write this state off for most of the campaign. However, with the recent slide in the polls away from the President and Laxalt boring through rural white voters, Ho'kee has made a last-minute ad blitz in this state, banking on heavy turnout from metros such as Orlando and St. Petersburg to close the margin in a tight race. Cuban support for Republicans have waned since the Hatfield campaign, and the Social Security issue is toxic for both Bentsen and Ho'kee, but we believe the President will narrowly hang on in this state.

Georgia: Ho'kee has a nominal apparatus in the outskirts of Atlanta, but is non-existent elsewhere in the state. While Gingrich might have made this competitive, this is one state Bentsen can count on.

Hawaii: This state has typically had a predilection toward Democrats, and they remain dominant in statewide elections. However, the Panama Canal crisis have driven up the prices of exports, and the War in Iran is unpopular. Ho'kee is a safe bet here.

Idaho: A state to watch for sure. This was the Working Man's Party's first Senate gain, after lambasting Vernon Ravenscroft for being an out-of-touch elitist seeking to dilute Idaho's original identity. This looks like an easy gambit for Laxalt to play against the wheel and deal Ho'kee, though the latter may be prepared for that.

Illinois: This state was a battle ground between Jackson and Hatfield, where the latter prevailed. Four years later, Ho'kee dominates in the Chicago suburbs and has made mild inroads in the Windy City itself. By comparison, Bentsen has a cloud of corruption over his head in this state, being dogged by Congressional investigations into the Illinois Democratic Party.

Indiana: This state has been in flux over the past few cycles, but the current momentum favors Ho'kee.

Iowa: One advantage that Jackson had in the Midwest was his support of (and Ho'kee's vociferous opposition to) massive agricultural subsidies. Since Jackson's omnibus, he has passed away, and Bentsen is on record as having opposed that bill. Ho'kee is favored.

Kansas: Jackson shocked the world by winning this state four years ago. Lloyd Bentsen is a great fit for this state, but his unpopularity and its traditional Republican leanings tip the scales in favor of Ho'kee.

Kentucky: Solid as coal for Bentsen.

Louisiana: This state voted overwhelmingly for Scoop Jackson twice, and any Republican ground that was gained in the past few decades has seemingly been relinquished by the Maverick makeover orchestrated by Hatfield and Ho'kee. However, the Working Man's Party proved to have a stealth machine here, electing Senator Mike Foster under the Democratic label. This state seems to be shaping up to be a race between Laxalt and Bentsen, with the latter favored.

Maine: Ho'kee has led this state by some margin from the get-go. Hatfield carried this state, and the Working Man's Party has had no presence here. Incumbent Senator Thad O'Connor was in trouble a month ago, but after a strong debate performance he has opened a solid lead. The duo of Areus Ho'kee and Thad O'Connor are a down ballot Republican's best friend here.

Maryland: Democrats have weakened here in the past few years, and Republicans have had continued success by electing Charles Mathias and Wayne Gilchrest. That being said, Bentsen is a favorite here.

Massachusetts: No Republican has tried harder to win here than Mark Hatfield four years ago. Running on a platform that stressed pacifism and a devotion to decayed urban areas, Mark Hatfield still came up short here despite selecting Representative Silvio Conte as his running mate. That being said, the Democratic brand has only further soured in this state. Bentsen was competitive here in early trial heats, but the Iran issue has extinguished his prospects.
13  Forum Community / Mock Parliment / Re: A new Mock Parliament on: July 20, 2015, 08:30:41 pm
The only thing about that map is that the New York split is sort of odd. It seems like you have "New York" as being just geographic Long Island - Brooklyn, while "Lesser NY" takes up the rest.

Call it sloppiness and a lack of familiarity with the Boroughs. You're welcome to help me fix it in a (hypothetical) final version.

I like the proposed map. How many constituencies does it have, Dallasfan65? 20?

I forget the exact count but I think it was in the mid 20's. I'm working under the assumption that I'll have to reduce a few constituencies, but some of those can be simple fixes (merging New York with Lesser New York, divvying up Berkshire between Erie and Great Bay, combining the St Louis district with the Chicago one.)
14  Forum Community / Mock Parliment / Re: Conservative Party on: July 20, 2015, 04:42:25 pm
Not sure how active I'll be but I'm in I guess.
15  Forum Community / Mock Parliment / Re: Office of RG Türkisblau on: July 20, 2015, 03:56:53 pm
Sergio Messi
Mojave
Conservative
16  Forum Community / Mock Parliment / Re: A new Mock Parliament on: July 20, 2015, 02:38:37 pm
For those who are curious, this is a prototype (emphasis important).



If you guys come to a consensus on how many seats you're going to have, let me know and I can fix the map accordingly (provided you like it.)
17  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Maxwell for Senate - I will abolish Atlasia, and do nothing else. on: July 18, 2015, 05:51:20 pm
Endorsed, endorsed, endorsed. This is exactly what we need.
18  About this Site / The Atlas / Re: Someone has tried to hack into my account? on: July 16, 2015, 08:20:32 pm
Didn't we ban people from talking about the Other Site?

Um.. no? And why do you care? Huh
19  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Tightrope- A Timeline on: July 14, 2015, 08:15:54 pm
I'm not usually fond of this era, but this is pretty neat. I can imagine 2014's going to be even worse.
20  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: the founder speaks: tweed's blueprint for a new Atlasian constitution. on: July 14, 2015, 10:35:11 am
Tweed can we get another video?
21  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: July 14, 2015, 12:57:22 am
TIME - Black Gold burns Bright
October 9th, 1988

Counter-offensive on the Oil Parallel

Last year the Bentsen administration sought to start anew United States policy in Iran by redefining the objective toward bringing stability to Western Iran and capturing oil reserves for war purposes. This campaign was dubbed "Operation Black Gold." Despite the level of destruction in Tehran, the capital of Iran, the existing Iranian regime has grown complacent in Eastern Iran (contiguous to the friendly Soviet Union) and has only given token skirmishes on the city of Qom. While this sort of pin-prick strategy may have been effective in tiring the United States out, some inhabitants of Iran do not have the patience to suffer that sort of attrition. Western Iranian citizens, unwilling to live under the thumb of United States occupation, have banded together through an umbrella network of militia organizations and have constituted the real military opposition in many of these cities. Due to their lack of training, they tended to be dispatched easily by the United States military.

Distraught with their lack of success and not content to abide by the status quo, several of these outfits collaborated and launched a nightly offensive on many of these oil sites on the Oil Parallel. A combination of procured SCUD missiles, planted explosives, and saboteurs caused dozens of oil derricks to burst into flames, making a light show for spectators miles away to see. While the military dispatched these insurgents wherever they met them, the damage has been done, both to the oil derricks and to the United States' existing agenda in Iran.

Stock Market left dripping

Following reports of a massive meltdown in American drilling sites in Iran, the stock market reported a massive loss in oil companies involved in Iran. Additionally, the oil futures market took a huge hit today, and the collective reaction has already begun to be dubbed "The Oil Spill." Basic speculation lends itself toward the conclusion that the meltdown in the stock market and probable increase in the price of gas will be deleterious toward the economy, which does not bode well for the reelection prospects of Lloyd Bentsen.

HEAD-TO-HEAD MATCHUPS

October 7th, 1988

Key:

Safe Republican: >10%

Slight Republican: 4-9%

Tossup: 3% difference

Slight Democratic: 4-9%

Safe Democratic: >10%

Ho'kee vs Bentsen vs Laxalt



372 - 75 - 13 - 78
22  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Voting Booth / Re: Northeast Senate Special Election, July 2015 on: July 12, 2015, 08:06:26 pm
[1] rpryor03
23  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: July 08, 2015, 12:10:35 am
Punji: 1988

Thad went to Areus' estate once more to report the failure of his errand, meeting him in the downstairs lobby of his estate. A sizeable group was present, amongst them: Lawrence Coventry, Ericson Snell, Abimelech Delroy, Alice Luce, and a few others. They were all casually drinking and chatting, obviously in anticipation of Thad's arrival. The large television was tuned to the news and an easel with several sheets of paper stood erect in the corner.

"Despite my supplications, Jefferson Dent had no interest in helping our efforts. I enumerated every reason I could to try and prevail upon him to join us, but it was a waste." The room fell quiet and the life drained from Areus' face. With a grave look on his face, he turned toward Abimelech and asked, "Where does our polling have us at right now?"

Abimelech Delroy moved toward the easel and flipped a sheet of paper, revealing a map of the United States. Some of the states were shaded in, depending on which candidate they corresponded with. With a metal pointer in one hand and a pad of paper in another, Abimelech began studiously going over his notes.

"There hasn't been any movement in Ohio. Respondents in the western part of the state, where the pro-life movement is particularly strong, seem to lean towards Laxalt. Cincinnati is still ours. In Pennsylvania, we're rock solid in the suburbs and doing better than expected in Philadelphia. However, Bentsen has been recovering in Pittsburgh and in the boondocks.

I'm bearish about our prospects in Oklahoma. While our polls have us ahead by a point or two, there's no way that our stance on off shore drilling can help. Plus, the cultural conservatism of the state makes it about as inviting as a landmine. Perhaps our personnel is whiffing this one. Bentsen is also holding steady in Tennessee, Virginia, and Rhode Island," said Abimelech.

His observations were received as if he were reading a eulogy at a funeral. Areus Ho'kee had made a spectacular comeback after the debate in September, going from a blowout in the electoral college to a dead heat. However, in the past week his momentum seemed to have sputtered, and President Bentsen was still in control. "So where does that leave us in the race?" asked Ho'kee with trepidation.

"Down to the wire. Under the current circumstances, I think Laxalt could pull off a win in Idaho and maybe Utah, which would throw a wrench into the works as nobody would have a majority. It's equally likely that Bentsen win Ohio and maybe even Illinois or Indiana, which would be such an electoral payload that it would be the death of our campaign," said Abimelech.

Areus' face was wash with disappointment, despite his best efforts to keep a positive front. "Thank you, my son. Now, despite how grim these prognostications sound, they also mean that we're within striking distance in a number of these states. This is a three-way race, and to be within a few points is to practically be tied. Barnstorming and a stroke of luck may be enough to turn the serpents in this snake-pit toward our favor," he appealed.

His remarks were met with murmurs and dim enthusiasm. However, seconds after he spoke, the news channel had a special announcement. "We have emergency news that our military encampments in Iran are being overrun. While we have no specific intelligence, we have reason to believe it's on several oil derricks in Western Iran," said the morose announcer.

There was an air of silence in the room at first. Thad went quiet, thinking to himself, "Unfortunate that so many men had to die in that episode." Most of the room seemed sad. However, Areus' eyes lit up like stars on a dark night. While most looked on with horror, Areus ran about the room, nearly hugging everybody. "Do you know what this means??? We just won the Presidency," he exclaimed. "We just won the Presidency!" Some in the room self consciously glanced toward each other, before feigning applause.

Years later, Lawrence Coventry would write a poem about this night:

Hiss! Hiss! The serpent churns.
Inside the pot, ambition burns.
A charmer steadies his gourd,
Not realizing a traitor is board.
Note by note, he plays the song,
And the serpent presents him long.
Hands clap, and he is the star
But fangs lunge from afar
The charmer lay dead by his tool,
Who went to many a fool.
24  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: July 08, 2015, 12:01:40 am
Emissary: 1988

After getting Areus' directive, Thad endeavored to arrange a meeting with Jefferson Dent. Speaking with Dent's intern on the phone, they had agreed upon noon time the next day as a meeting date. It was nearly an hour later before Thad observed a haggard figure finally strutting into the Drunken Dutchman and toward his table. It was Jefferson Dent, meeting his hasty invitation.

Though Thad did not make too much correspondence with the Alabama Senator, he noticed that Dent's state had depreciated considerably. In their last meeting, Thad noted that Jefferson Dent's salt and pepper hair matched the tip of his cigarettes, but now it had turned to a forlorn gray. His right eye seemed lifeless and yellow, while his left stared aimlessly on.

Jefferson Dent made his way toward the opposite seat of Thad, sitting down. For a minute there was an uncomfortable silence between the two. "Okay. So, what've you invited me for?" asked Dent. "I understand that this is a matter we spoke of before, and you spurned me for good reason. That being said, I would like for you to hear my case in hopes that you would commit yourself to a viable cause.

From your perspective, the Election of 1988 does not present any good choices. Amongst the belt-way, Areus Ho'kee has the reputation of a wheeler-dealer, and is just too eccentric for the general populace. Lloyd Bentsen played second man to a Democratic President that set back liberal causes more than any Republican of note. Paul Laxalt is a candidate of the Klansman, and Eugene McCarthy has no viability to speak of.

The field has been pared down to these four choices, two of which are automatically invalid. Between the two, you have to ask which serves your interests better: a moderate Republican who emphatically supports withdrawal from Iran, immigration reform, and agricultural welfare, or a Democrat who's ready and able to sell out his party to the highest bidder.

Do not think that your endorsement would be for nothing. Your name carries a lot of clout with blacks in the South, as seen by Hatfield's performance there four years ago.  I know that you're a man of action, and you could be part of a turning point in history," said Thad. Jefferson Dent chuckled, resting his face in his hand. "My grievance with the Democratic Party has been that it's sold out our values. So I'm going to endorse a Republican Presidential candidate who will probably have a Republican Congress? I couldn't sleep at night," said Dent.

Thad felt a lump in his throat as he uttered the next sentence. "Areus left open the possibility that he would be willing to give significant concessions on policy issues in exchange for an endorsement." He took a second to wrack his brain for lines that Lawrence had said. "Consider the outcomes: if Bentsen were to get elected, he would be at the whim of a Republican Congress for his entire term. The populace in general is against the Democratic Party, and if it weren't for Laxalt then Ho'kee would be winning nearly forty states.

However, if Ho'kee were to be elected and you agreed to endorse him then you could have some bargaining power. Considering the deplorable state that the Democratic Party is in, your best bet might be endorsing Ho'kee. He could pass things most Democratic Presidents couldn't," said Thad.

"That's some compelling rhetoric, Thad," said Dent before a garish cough. "I like you quite a bit, but considering Ho'kee's past dealings, life is too short for me to throw my principles behind him, regardless of what perks he might be dangling before my face. Who's to guarantee I'll get them?" Thad was visibly distraught. "So, what issues do you care about the most?" asked Thad.

"Healthcare, far and above anything else. I was born into a landed family and have been at the top rung of society all of my life, but I'm still on the cusp of death. Can you imagine how sh*tty the situation must be for poor people?" asked Dent.  There was a moment of silence before he continued. "Maybe this issue hits too close to home for me. In any event, I won't be endorsing Areus Ho'kee."
25  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: Dust In The Wind on: July 06, 2015, 08:53:53 pm
Death Ground: 1988

Though there were no polls conducted after the debate, the consensus among his friends was that Thad had done well. The local media - to the extent that it had covered the debate - was in agreement: Thad O'Connor had defended his record and laid a glove on Joseph Brennan, a political veteran. Surveys of the audience after the debate indicated that Thad won by a considerable margin. Upon Thad's return to Washington D.C., he met Lawrence's invitation to rendezvous at his apartment with him and Areus.

"Thanks for showing up, Thad. I heard you performed pretty well against Joe Brennan. Considering how tight control of the Senate is, you need to do everything you can to get reelected; for both my sake and yours. Every Senate seat counts, and it would be a major setback if I were to be elected but Democrats regained control of the Senate. Besides, this race is an important challenge for you to tackle: if you lose, then your election was a fluke and your mandate undeserved. If you win, then you know how to defend your record and defeat a political veteran. That could serve as preparation for a more important office..." said Areus.

There was a moment of silence before Areus pressed on. "Anyway, I've brought you two here because I consider you to be among those who I trust the most. I value your insight, and would like to unveil our next strategy in winning the White House: the Southern Strategy." There was a long pause, before Lawrence Coventry spoke up. "Areus, why would we have a Southern Strategy? That area has been the most hostile to our political objectives in every single election. I wish Ericson was here, because he could put this in a better way than I could," said Lawrence.

Areus chuckled. "I'm glad Eric isn't here, personally. I understand your aversion to pursuing the South, but I suspect that my reasons for doing so are precisely the same as your reasons for wanting to avoid it." Lawrence looked puzzled. "To elaborate a bit, the South has been in the Democrats' pocket for almost all elections in the past hundred years - part of that due to machine politics, and part of that because of their strength amongst poor Southern whites. The latter constituency helped Goldwater win the South, and also helped Jackson win a decisive margin in the popular vote.

Laxalt's candidacy took us from a one-hundred electoral vote lead to trailing. However, I think we have to try and pursue whatever opportunities that gives us, and we have to look toward the South. While Laxalt's candidacy has robbed us of some conservative Republicans in the Heartland, it's also hurt Bentsen amongst working-class conservatives in the South. If we're able to hang on to most of the people who voted for Hatfield and peel off a few blacks, then we may win the Presidency, which brings me to the second prong of my Southern Strategy: African Americans.

I recognize that it's a tough sell. However, our campaign has put an emphasis on urban renewal. We've shied away from the dogmatic budget cutting policies of other Republicans. This ticket is the only one committed against the Iran War, and blacks would end up on the bad side of a draft," said Ho'kee.

Lawrence remained unconvinced. "That may be true, but Republicans' dalliance with racists in the Sixties makes that relationship a bit untenable. Regardless, what incentive do we have to offer them to vote for you over Bentsen? Are we really hinging our political prospects on states like Tennessee?" he asked.

"It's less about what we've got, and more about what we're lacking. Bentsen shares the same weaknesses I do on those issues: I supported social welfare reform. So did Bentsen. I supported tax cuts. So did Bentsen. That being said, there's one political figure that I think could steer a significant amount of blacks toward my ticket: Jefferson Dent.

"Dent's refused to support us before. What would we have to offer him this time? Our caucus wouldn't stand for electing him to a leadership role. He's not one for bribery. He dislikes you. Making another run at his support would just look desperate and embarrassing," said Coventry.

"The stakes are different at this juncture. When we'd asked him last time, there was still hope that Bentsen would lose his primary, or move to the left. Now, we know none of that is going to happen, and people don't always stick to their guns when it's crunch time. While Dent is not a man for graft or patronage, I have something a bit more enticing: policy concessions," responded Ho'kee with a sanguine grin.

"Are you mad?!" Lawrence exclaimed incredulously. "Not at all. It would be something relatively small: tobacco tax, maybe a token minimum wage hike. Something unachievable by any Democratic President in the near future. He would get progress on an issue, I would look like a grand compromiser. We both come out winners," said Ho'kee.

"What guarantee would you have to make on that promise? Ericson is going to be the Speaker of the House next year, and there's no way he would along with anything significant. I'm just glad he's not here right now," rebutted Lawrence. "He isn't here for good reason, because I know he'd try and blow the deal up.

By the time I'd make good on my quid-quo-pro, I'd already be President, and Eric would be in a position to either go along with it or squander his political future pissing in the wind against whatever minor fix I'd be advocating for. Thad, you've been seen associating with Dent on a few occasions. Can I count on you to persuade Dent?"

Thad had felt a renewed sense of confidence after infiltrating the Working Man's Party's convention and exceeding expectations against his Senate opponent. While he knew this next task would be difficult, he balked at the prospect of denying a commission from Areus. "I'll do my best," he said.
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