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15201  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Voting Booth / Re: Northeast Legislature- July 2008 Propositions on: July 19, 2008, 09:32:56 pm
The Its People Act - NO
Preferential Voting Act - No Preference
Regional LEED Standards Bill - YES
Northeast Speed Limit Standardization Act - NO
15202  General Discussion / Alternative History / Re: A Little Less Bloodletting on: July 19, 2008, 06:43:02 pm
1813

President Hillhouse is busy trying to fight both the Confederacy and Spain while trying to keep the peace with Britain and forge a new political party.  In that last, he is helped by the failure of Macon to not only keep the Speakership, but also to be reelected to the House as a result of the near total War Hawk sweep of the South and West.  Free to forge his own political alliances, Hillhouse chooses to not attempt to revive he fortunes of the Federalist Party and instead attempts to organize a new Republican Party from the Old Democrats and Loyal Opposition factions.  How well that will work is largely dependent upon the outcome of the war and his efforts at diplomacy.

Hillhouse decided to establish regional commands for the Army given the wide scope of American operations.  To command the Army of the Northwest, he brought out of retirement Major General "Lighthorse" Henry Lee III.  General Lee was able to achieve a degree of success, thanks in part to having adequate forces to do the job .  1813 would be largely quiet for the other main Army commanders.  The Senior Officer of the United States Army, Major General James Wilkinson, retains control of the forces dealing with Spanish Florida as commander of the Army of the South.  Unlike OTL, the Creek Civil War remains a purely internal affair and Andrew Jackson will have a quiet year.  Brigadier General Wade Hampton of South Carolina is in charge of the Army of Louisiana, and last and least, Major General Alexander Hamilton is also brought back and given command of the Army of the Northeast (Virginia to Maine).

Diplomatically, Hillhouse engages in two major efforts in 1813, one is to send John Quincy Adams off to Britain to attempt to get them to stop aiding Tecumseh, the other steals a page from the British playbook and involves supporting José María Morelos in the Mexican War of Independence with money, material, and most importantly, the United States Navy.  As a result, Morelos will have significantly more success than in OTL.

There is also our first significant European butterfly in 1813.  Because Spanish attention has been diverted more towards the Americas, there will be about 6,000 fewer Spanish troops at the Battle of Vitoria  (one-third the Spanish forces, one-twentieth of the Allied forces)  Vitoria is still an Allied victory, but it is not a rout and the French forces are able to retreat in good order.  Unlike OTL, Marshal Soult will be able to relieve the siege of San Sebastian in July, thereby keeping the French from being pushed back over the Pyrenees.  This has the follow on effect of keeping Austria from joining the Allies in the War of the Sixth Coalition in August, unlike OTL.  While the French Empire will eventually crumble, it will take longer.
15203  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: The American Monarchy on: July 18, 2008, 11:42:12 pm
Nothing has happened in this timeline that would require that American-Moroccan relations be butterflied into something different from our timeline. 
15204  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Most Illegal Entrant advocates and opponents agree on proposal on: July 18, 2008, 11:15:25 pm
Annex everything down to panama.

     Why stop at Panama?

The Darién Gap
15205  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Gubernatorial/Statewide Elections / Re: NH: Straight-ticket voting off the ballot on: July 18, 2008, 10:36:11 pm
I support straight-ticket voting, but that's because we do it sensibly in South Carolina.  Here if you vote straight-ticket and then cast a vote in an individual race, it does not create a spoiled ballot as apparently was the case in New Hampshire.  Instead, the vote in the individual race counts and the straight-ticket is ignored.  (i.e., the straight-ticket choice counts only if you don't make a choice for an individual race.)
15206  General Discussion / Alternative History / Re: A Little Less Bloodletting on: July 18, 2008, 08:48:36 pm
1809
With both the Senate and the Presidency coming into Democratic-Republican hands for the first time, the lame duck Senate and the departing President Livingston fill as many vacant offices as possible.  Unlike the situation in 1801 in OTL, since the Federalists already did not have control of the House, no new offices were created, so there are no unsigned appointments left uncompleted when James Madison takes office.

1809 proves to be a solemn year. On April 30, twenty years to the day when he took the oath of office of President, George Washington dies.  Washington is buried at Mount Vernon, alongside his wife who died four years earlier. (Three years later than in OTL.)  Nor was he the only Founding Father to die.  Thomas Paine dies on June 8 (as in OTL).  And then on July 16, Thomas Jefferson, died.  These deaths, along with the change in administration make 1809 a commonly used dividing point in United States history in the future, depending on whether the War of 1810 is included in the initial phase of United States history.

1810
The spark for the War of 1810 is the West Florida Rebellion.  Settlers from the United States organize a rebellion against Spanish rule (hardly the only rebellion in Spanish America in 1810, but for the United States, the only one that mattered.) Actual fighting doesn't start until the taking of Baton Rouge by the rebels during September, so as a campaign issue it mainly affected the southern States due to time for the news to travel, and is not a party issue in the election of 1810.  The Federalists gain in the mid-term elections, but they fail to retake either House of Congress.

Speaking of which, the short-lived Republic of West Florida is admitted as the State of West Florida by Congress on November 30, over the objections of President Madison.  As admitted, West Florida includes all of the former British colony of West Florida (both the portion of West Florida that the Spanish had regained from the British in 1783, and that portion held by the United States since 1783).  That annexation is generally regarded as the start date of the war, altho the formal declarations of war aren't issued by the supporters of Ferdinand VII until 1811.

1811
At first, the British see little profit in fighting the Yankees and the Yankees see no reason to expand their war beyond Spain.  Initially the war goes well for the Americans as they seize New Orleans, St. Louis, and St. Augustine in the early part of the year.


The U.S. Navy has a good year in 1811 as it is facing only remnants of the Spanish Navy that have chosen to support the Bourbons and oppose Joseph Bonaparte as King of Spain.  While Joseph doesn't recognize the legitimacy of the American annexation of West Florida, as long as the Americans are only harrying the supporters of the Spanish Bourbons, he's willing to not bother with declaring a war he is in no position to fight anyway.  Besides, his older brother Napoleon hopes that the Americans can be enticed into fighting the British.  That may happen, but not because of anything the Bonapartes do.

As in OTL, Tecumseh's War comes to a boil in 1811.  Fewer U.S. forces are in the area, so the Battle of Tippecanoe is fought with roughly equal numbers instead of the 2:1 U.S. advantage in OTL.  Governor Harrison of Indiana Territory dies in the battle and never will be President.

1812

While the British saw no profit in helping the Spanish Bourbons, the same can not be said of the Indians.  By spring, they are providing arms and ammunition to Tecumseh's Confederacy at very liberal terms and the entire American Northwest was aflame with war.  By the end of summer, not a single white settlement remains north of the Maumee River in Detroit Territory, and Vincennes, the capital of the Indiana Territory has been burned to the ground.  Whether to declare war on the British in addition to the Bourbons will be a major issue in the 1812 elections, though both parties are split by the war.

On the Democratic-Republican side, the War Hawk faction led by the youthful Senator Henry Clay of Kentucky wants to declare war on Britain as well.  The Old Democrat faction led by Speaker Nathaniel Macon wants to fight only one war at a time.  Because of his initial opposition to the West Florida annexation and the disasters in the Northwest, President Madison has no support for a second term among the Democratic-Republicans.  Both factions favor continuing the war with Spain.

Conversely, the Federalists are united in opposing war with Britain, but split over the issue of war with Spain.  Vice President James Hillhouse leads the Loyal Opposition faction that favors the war with Spain, but sees no reason to risk war with Britain. Governor Caleb Strong of Massachusetts opposes both war with Britain and the Bourbons.

In the end, three tickets end up running.  Running under the War Hawk banner is the ticket of Henry Clay of Kentucky and Representative Langdon Cheves of South Carolina.  Speaker Nathaniel Macon decides not to risk his base of power in the House and instead forges a fusion ticket that supports war with Spain but opposes getting involved in a war with Britain right now.  Running under the Federal-Republican banner is the ticket of Vice President James Hillhouse and Secretary of State James Monroe.  Finally, running under the Liberty banner in just the nine northeastern States was the ticket of Governor Strong and Governor Roger Griswold of Connecticut.

(Note: In several states, electors were elected as part of either Federalist or Democratic-Republican slates which then fragmented between two tickets.)

Ticket
StateWHFRLib
CT
7
2
DE
4
GA
8
KY
12
MD
3
7
1
MA
9
13
NH
6
2
NJ
3
5
NY
29
NC
15
OH
5
PA
9
16
RI
4
SC
11
TN
8
VT
4
4
VA
25
WF
3
Total
102
87
26

Griswold's death in late October has the effect of scattering his electoral votes, but since his ticket came in third, it has no effect on the outcome.

The Democratic-Republican controlled Senate initially favored a gentleman's compromise of picking the Democratic-Republican Vice President from the other ticket, but Governor Griswold's untimely death reminds them that it is possible that it could matter who wins the Vice Presidency, and they elect James Madison on the first ballot by the margin of 20-16.

In the House, the initial ballot is 8 States each for Clay and Hillhouse, with New Jersey split and Rhode Island supporting Strong.  On the sixteenth ballot, one New Jersey Representative and both Rhode Islanders switch, giving Hillhouse the 10 States he needs.

However, despite his victory, in the 13th Congress, the War Hawks will control the House while the Senate will be a chaotic mess as no faction has a majority, and it is unclear whether the election of 1812 presages a permanent shift in political parties or not.
15207  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: What part of the world will be the first to have a 2-way nuclear war? on: July 18, 2008, 01:49:09 pm
The Third Greco-Turkish War in 2093 according to the history book I managed to sneak back with me when I visited the 24th century.
15208  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election Predictions / Re: Prediction Summary - with states most easily changed noted on: July 18, 2008, 01:13:46 pm
2 new predictors since two days ago (Wednesday). With a total of 917 predictions, the 5% threshold for an easy change if no one predicts an independent remains 45.

Here are the easy shifts.  Obama gained slightly in a mixed result.  With no polling news, I have no idea why Missouri had the largest amount of change in the changes I'm tracking closely.  Texas is getting close to having an easy shift on the list with only 49 changes now needed to shift from R 60% to R 50%.

DE: D 50%  Lean  (27 changes can shift to D Strong) [+1]
FL: R 50% Tossup (14 changes can shift to R  Lean)  [±0]
HI: D 50% Strong (30 changes can shift to D  Lean[+1]
IA: D 40% Tossup (42 changes can shift to D  50%)   [±0]
MI: D 50% Tossup ( 4 changes can shift to D  Lean[-3]
MO: R 50% Tossup (29 changes can shift to R  40%)   [-9]
NC: R 50% Strong (27 changes can shift to R  Lean[+2]
NV: R 40% Tossup ( 9 changes can shift to R  30%)   [-5]
NV: R 40% Tossup (10 changes can shift to D  30%)   [-5]
NV: R 40% Tossup (12 changes can shift to D  40%)   [-6]
OH: D 50% Tossup (33 changes can shift to D  40%)   [+1]
PA: D 50%  Lean  ( 3 changes can shift to D Tossup) [+2]
VA: R 40% Tossup ( 4 changes can shift to R  50%)   [-2]
WV: R 50% Strong (27 changes can shift to R  Lean[+2]
15209  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election Predictions / Re: Prediction Summary - with states most easily changed noted on: July 16, 2008, 09:51:48 pm
6 new predictors since four days ago (Saturday). With a total of 915 predictions, the 5% threshold for an easy change if no one predicts an independent remains 45.

Here are the easy shifts.  Save for Nevada, predictions mainly shifted towards Obama. Pennsylvania barely shifted over to D Lean and it would take only 1 change to shift it back.

DE: D 50%  Lean  (26 changes can shift to D Strong) [-2 changes needed]
FL: R 50% Tossup (14 changes can shift to R  Lean[+2 changes needed]
HI: D 50% Strong (29 changes can shift to D  Lean[+2 changes needed]
IA: D 40% Tossup (42 changes can shift to D  50%)    [unchanged]
MI: D 50% Tossup ( 7 changes can shift to D  Lean[-8 changes needed]
MO: R 50% Tossup (38 changes can shift to R  40%)   [-1 changes needed]
NC: R 50% Strong (25 changes can shift to R  Lean[-3 changes needed]
NV: R 40% Tossup (14 changes can shift to R  30%)   [+4 changes needed]
NV: R 40% Tossup (15 changes can shift to D  30%)   [+4 changes needed]
NV: R 40% Tossup (18 changes can shift to D  40%)   [+5 changes needed]
OH: D 50% Tossup (32 changes can shift to D  40%)   [+1 change needed]
PA: D 50%  Lean  ( 1 change  can shift to D Tossup) [+5 changes needed]
VA: R 40% Tossup ( 6 changes can shift to R  50%)    [unchanged]
WV: R 50% Strong (25 changes can shift to R  Lean[-1 change needed]
15210  Election Archive / 2008 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: MO: Public Policy Polling: McCain ahead of Obama by 3% on: July 13, 2008, 01:31:28 pm
If McCain doesn't have a lead in South Carolina, I'd be very surprised.  Obama probably will be able to keep McCain to a high single digit lead here, especially if he contests both Georgia and North Carolina as their media markets have significant spill over into South Carolina.
15211  Election Archive / 2008 Elections / Re: RollCall: Obama 'to campaign' at the Speedway on: July 13, 2008, 01:16:53 pm
He's not sponsoring the car anymore, I guess. It's probably because the driver is a Republican(obviously) and donated money to Bush.

Where was there ever any indication he was going to?  The team approached Obama (and others) about it and he turned it down, and rightly so in my opinion.  Sponsoring a car for a single NASCAR race is one of the worst ad buys one can make, in part because the teams willing to accept single race sponsorships are generally doing so bad that you'll get almost no "free"airtime other than when a good race car laps yours or your car starts a wreck.  That's even without considering the obvious charges of pandering that would be generated if he did it.

On the other hand, if he could sponsor a good team for multiple races, it might be worth it.  After all, like just like the cars at a NASCAR race, Obama wants this country to turn left fast. Grin
15212  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election What-ifs? / Re: The American Monarchy on: July 12, 2008, 04:48:21 pm
While not quite the Middle East, given the historical relations in OTL between the United States and Morocco. I could easily see Morocco being a U.S. ally as they try to keep from being gobbled up by the perfidious French and Spanish.
15213  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election Predictions / Re: Prediction Summary - with states most easily changed noted on: July 12, 2008, 12:39:08 pm
3 new predictors since two days ago (Thursday). With a total of 909 predictions, the 5% threshold for an easy change if no one predicts an independent remains 45.

Here are the easy shifts.  Nothing particularly noteworthy, though a very slight shift in predictions overall to favor Obama

DE: D 50%  Lean  (28 changes can shift to D Strong) [-3 changes needed]
FL: R 50% Tossup (12 changes can shift to R  Lean[+1 change needed]
HI: D 50% Strong (27 changes can shift to D  Lean[+1 change needed]
IA: D 40% Tossup (42 changes can shift to D  50%)   [-3 changes needed]
MI: D 50% Tossup (15 changes can shift to D  Lean)   [unchanged]
MO: R 50% Tossup (39 changes can shift to R  40%)    [unchanged]
NC: R 50% Strong (28 changes can shift to R  Lean[-5 changes needed]
NV: R 40% Tossup (10 changes can shift to R  30%)   [-3 changes needed]
NV: R 40% Tossup (11 changes can shift to D  30%)   [-3 changes needed]
NV: R 40% Tossup (13 changes can shift to D  40%)   [-3 changes needed]
OH: D 50% Tossup (31 changes can shift to D  40%)   [-1 change needed]
PA: D 50% Tossup ( 5 changes can shift to D  Lean[-1 change needed]
VA: R 40% Tossup ( 6 changes can shift to R  50%)   [+3 changes needed]
WV: R 50% Strong (26 changes can shift to R  Lean[+2 changes needed]
15214  Election Archive / 2008 Elections / Re: RollCall: Obama 'to campaign' at the Speedway on: July 12, 2008, 12:18:02 pm
Looks like this was a story that came out of BAM Racing being desperate for a sponsor.  There are a number of NASCAR teams having sponsor problems this year.
15215  General Discussion / Alternative History / Re: Ford takes office January 1981 on: July 11, 2008, 07:19:35 pm
Yes, he clearly would be able to run for election in 1984.  The question is would he? He'd be 71 then, older than Reagan at the start of his first term.  Incidentally, the Betty Ford Center opened in 1982.  Gerald being President instead of an ex-President may well impact that.  As for Ford's VP, how about Greenspan?  One of the conditions he gave for running with Reagan was that Greenspan should be Treasury Secretary.  (Another was Kissinger at State, but he's not eligible.)  Doubtful that Greenspan would be able to get the nomination in either 1984 or 1988 to be President in his own right though.
15216  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: BREAKING NEWS: Haltemprice by-election on: July 10, 2008, 09:00:57 pm
So does that mean the English Dems saved their deposit or not (though it looks like the recount was to see who came in second)
15217  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of the Irgun and Lehi on: July 10, 2008, 08:21:57 pm
The Palestinians are only following the example of these groups that showed that terrorism can indeed get you a state of your very own.
15218  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Election Predictions / Re: Prediction Summary - with states most easily changed noted on: July 10, 2008, 06:38:38 pm
2 new predictors since three days ago (Monday). With a total of 906 predictions, the 5% threshold for an easy change if no one predicts an independent remains 45.

Here are the easy shifts.  Given the lack of polling results, its understandable that nothing has seen a strong shift in opinions as to who will win where.

DE: D 50%  Lean  (31 changes can shift to D Strong)  [unchanged]
FL: R 50% Tossup (11 changes can shift to R  Lean)   [unchanged]
HI: D 50% Strong (26 changes can shift to D  Lean[+2 changes needed]
IA: D 40% Tossup (45 changes can shift to D  50%)   [+1 change needed]
MI: D 50% Tossup (15 changes can shift to D  Lean[+1 change needed]
MO: R 50% Tossup (39 changes can shift to R  40%)   [+2 changes needed]
NC: R 50% Strong (33 changes can shift to R  Lean)   [unchanged]
NV: R 40% Tossup (13 changes can shift to R  30%)   [-1 change needed]
NV: R 40% Tossup (14 changes can shift to D  30%)   [-1 change needed]
NV: R 40% Tossup (16 changes can shift to D  40%)   [-1 changes needed]
OH: D 50% Tossup (32 changes can shift to D  40%)   [+4 changes needed]
PA: D 50% Tossup ( 6 changes can shift to D  Lean[+1 change needed]
VA: R 40% Tossup ( 3 changes can shift to R  50%)   [-2 changes needed]
WV: R 50% Strong (24 changes can shift to R  Lean)   [unchanged]
15219  Election Archive / 2008 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: ND: Rasmussen: McCain leads North Dakota by 1% on: July 10, 2008, 03:26:15 pm
Folks, the only thing worse than getting your panties in a wad over a summer poll is getting your panties in a wad over a fake summer poll...  Tongue

And people wonder why so few females bother with the forum...
15220  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: BREAKING NEWS: Haltemprice by-election on: July 10, 2008, 02:47:46 pm
Now for the latest absurdity! (link)

Because of fears that 26 candidates would be too much weight for their usual temporary stage, only returning officer will be on a small platform, with the candidates standing in a large semi-circle around the platform.  About what time should the result be announced?  I know the polls close in a little over an hour, but I don't know how long Haltemprice normally takes to count.
15221  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Government / Re: Jas v. Inks.LWC & Peter on: July 10, 2008, 01:39:31 pm
Not really.  If the court be evenly divided, it could always rehear the case once a third justice is confirmed.
15222  Questions and Answers / The Atlas / Re: Switching red and blue on this site, when is it going to happen? on: July 09, 2008, 02:09:16 pm
Imagine that, American political parties choosing to use red, white, and blue.  What ever will they think up next?
15223  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Alternative Elections / Re: The Battle of Yorktown was lost in 1776 on: July 09, 2008, 01:46:35 pm
Well first off, the Siege of Yorktown was in 1781 not 1776.  Secondly Yorktown was a foregone conclusion once the French Navy beat the Royal Navy at the Battle of the Chesapeake.  Thirdly, had the British actually won the Revolution, trying to speculate on what result a vote in 2010 without some idea of what had happened in intervening 23 decades would be pointless.   So you'll have to wait for gporter to discuss this with maps.
15224  Election Archive / 2008 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: NC-08: Obama tops McCain by 4 in district Bush won twice with 54% on: July 09, 2008, 01:10:48 pm
Why Barr first again?  Anyway, PPP is getting close to deserving the (D) beside it.  In fact, I would probably do it, but I abhor the whining it would engender.

Kissell is about where I would expect him, otoh...

Why not poll Barr? I mean he is on the ballot in Nov.

Simply listing him at all along with the other two candidates gives his name extra weight that it simply will not have on the ballot.  I mean, why not list the Constitution Party candidate?  The Green candidate?  Socialist Worker candidate?

Right now Barr is the only other candidate besides McCain and Obama on the ballot in North Carolina.  Given North Carolina's ballot access laws, it is highly likely those three will be the only candidates on the ballot.  (North Carolina law requires a petition signed by 2% of the last gubernatorial vote, 69,734 signatures.)  Including only Barr of the minor candidates in the question is the right approach for North Carolina.
15225  Election Archive / 2008 Elections / Re: Obama booed by some NEA teachers on: July 08, 2008, 03:39:25 pm
Ideally, the school year should be 200 days, not 180

Hell no.

Hell yes. A lot of teaching time gets wasted reteaching material forgotten over summer vacation.  A shorter summer vacation would reduce that forgetfulness.  180 days was originally a compromise between urban schools which had longer school years and rural schools which had shorter years.  Since young kids are not needed to help out on the farm any more, there really is no need to retain the shortened school year any more.  (I could see older farm kids including their farming chores as part of a vocational educational system.)  Most countries have longer academic school years than the United States.  At a bare minimum we should go for 190.  200 is what we should aim for.
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