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All-Star Presidential Election, Version II

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Some of you may remember my All-Star Presidential Election scenario, pitting the 43 men who've been President of the United States against each other in a grand, time-bending election. Well, with the 2012 version of President Forever coming out soon, I thought I'd make a revised version, with a few differences. In particular, the candidates won't just be the actual Presidents, but will also include other prominent political figures from throughout American history. Also, candidates won't necessarily be running for the nomination of the party they actually belonged to while in office, but will rather be sorted into reasonably cohesive parties. So the Democratic Party would just be the modern, liberal version of that Party, with the conservative Democrats from the 1830s through the 1960s being shifted into the Democratic-Republican Party (or at least, that's how I'm envisioning it currently). I'm figuring I'd want the Democratic, Republican, Democratic-Republican, and Whig Parties, at the very least. I'm not sure exactly where to put the Federalists; there aren't enough of them that I feel they deserve a whole party (although if there are substantial modern figures who would fit neatly under a Federalist banner that might change things), but the party didn't align particularly well with any of the others. I might also include various minor parties as off-by-default.

So, any thoughts/ideas/suggestions?

Note that, of course, this scenario won't actually get produced until P4E2012 is released. It's just in the planning stage right now.

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Some of you may remember my All-Star Presidential Election scenario, pitting the 43 men who've been President of the United States against each other in a grand, time-bending election. Well, with the 2012 version of President Forever coming out soon, I thought I'd make a revised version, with a few differences. In particular, the candidates won't just be the actual Presidents, but will also include other prominent political figures from throughout American history. Also, candidates won't necessarily be running for the nomination of the party they actually belonged to while in office, but will rather be sorted into reasonably cohesive parties. So the Democratic Party would just be the modern, liberal version of that Party, with the conservative Democrats from the 1830s through the 1960s being shifted into the Democratic-Republican Party (or at least, that's how I'm envisioning it currently). I'm figuring I'd want the Democratic, Republican, Democratic-Republican, and Whig Parties, at the very least. I'm not sure exactly where to put the Federalists; there aren't enough of them that I feel they deserve a whole party (although if there are substantial modern figures who would fit neatly under a Federalist banner that might change things), but the party didn't align particularly well with any of the others. I might also include various minor parties as off-by-default.

So, any thoughts/ideas/suggestions?

Note that, of course, this scenario won't actually get produced until P4E2012 is released. It's just in the planning stage right now.

What happened to your idea of a B-list candidates scenario that I had contributed ideas to?

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I mean, I think I had made it into a more-or-less working scenario. One thing is that I've had some rather serious computer trouble since then, so I'm not sure exactly where to find the scenario files and everything.

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For candidates, here's some ideas:

Name: Edward Kennedy

Party: Democratic

State: Massachusetts

Title: Senator

Atributes - L-4…I-3…E-4…IF-4…C-4…S-4…D-4

Name: Nelson Rockefeller

Party: Republican

State: New York

Title: Governor

Atributes - L-4…I-3…E-4…IF-4…C-4…S-3…D-3

Name: Huey Long

Party: Democratic

State: Louisiana

Title: either Governor or Senator

Atributes - L-5…I-2…E-3…IF-4…C-5…S-4…D-4

Name: Robert Taft

Party: Republican

State: Ohio

Title: Senator

Atributes - L-4…I-4…E-4…IF-4…C-2…S-3…D-3

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And some more....

Name: Robert La Follette Sr.

Party: either Progressive or Republican

State: Wisconsin

Title: Senator

Atributes - L-5…I-4…E-4…IF-4…C-4…S-4…D-4

Name: Eugene Debs

Party: Socialist

State: Indiana

Title: State Senator

Atributes - L-4…I-4…E-3…IF-4…C-4…S-4…D-4

Name: Ross Perot

Party: Reform

State: Texas

Title: Businessman

Atributes - L-4…I-3…E-2…IF-4…C-4…S-4…D-4

Name: Robert F. Kennedy

Party: Democratic

State: New York

Title: Senator

Atributes - L-4…I-4…E-3…IF-4…C-5…S-4…D-4

Name: Thomas Dewey

Party: Republican

State: New York

Title: Governor

Atributes - L-4…I-4…E-4…IF-4…C-3…S-3…D-3

Name: Barry Goldwater

Party: Republican

State: Arizona

Title: Senator

Atributes - L-3…I-4…E-4…IF-4…C-3…S-3…D-3

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So that's:

Ted Kennedy

Robert Kennedy

Huey Long

Eugene Debs

Robert La Follette

Nelson Rockefeller

Thomas Dewey

Barry Goldwater

Robert Taft

Ross Perot

I like most of those; I'm a little uncertain about Perot. Admittedly he did get perhaps the highest percentage of total popular vote of any non-major-party-candidate type, but in retrospect at least he just seems like so much of a joke. I guess I'll put him as off-by-default? Not entirely sure how to handle independent types.

Anyway, the other end of the spectrum is which actual Presidents to kick off the list. I have a feeling Clinton, Reagan, Kennedy, Roosevelt, Wilson, Roosevelt, Lincoln, Jackson, Madison, Jefferson, and Washington are guaranteed spots. I'd be inclined to kick William Henry Harrison, John Tyler, Zachary Taylor, Millard Fillmore, Franklin Pierce, James Buchanan, Andrew Johnson, James Garfield, Chester Arthur, Rutherford Hayes, Warren Harding, and Gerald Ford off the list straight-away. That leaves Adams, Monroe, Adams, Van Buren, Polk, Grant, Cleveland, Harrison, McKinley, Taft, Coolidge, Hoover, Truman, Eisenhower, Johnson, Nixon, Carter, Bush, Bush, and Obama on the bubble.

Since I'm going to be messing with the parties, at this point it's basically just a name-collecting exercise. No way are Robert Taft and Nelson Rockefeller in the same party, I don't think.

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One of your proposed presidents I'd chop is Bush, sr. I mean sure there was the First Gulf War (itself less effort for the Allied Military than swatting a crippled mosquito is for us), but Wikipedia itself describes him as a "pragmatic caretaker president without a unifying theme or vision to his administration." And, his term did end in recession. That's my two bits for the moment.

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Name: Al Gore

Party: Democratic

State: Tennessee

Title: Vice President

Atributes - L-4…I-3…E-4…IF-4…C-2…S-5…D-3

Name: John McCain

Party: Republican

State: Arizona

Title: Senator

Atributes - L-4…I-4…E-4…IF-4…C-4…S-3…D-4

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William Jennings Bryan, Stephen Douglas, John Calhoun, Daniel Webster, Henry Clay are all definitely in, I'd say. Maybe someone along the lines of Breckinridge, Jefferson Davis, Strom Thurmond, or George Wallace? And what do people think of Adlai Stevenson, who won a major-party nomination twice and then only lost because of his opponent's popularity cult?

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Okay, I've got a working draft of the parties and candidates:

Democratic:

Franklin Roosevelt

John F. Kennedy

Ted Kennedy

Robert F. Kennedy

Lyndon Johnson

Hillary Clinton

Bill Clinton

Al Gore

Robert La Follette

Republican:

Ronald Reagan

Strom Thurmond

Robert Taft

Calvin Coolidge

John Calhoun

Jefferson Davis

Barry Goldwater

Dwight Eisenhower

Richard Nixon

Whig:

Abraham Lincoln

Theodore Roosevelt

Alexander Hamilton

Daniel Webster

Henry Clay

Nelson Rockefeller

Thomas Dewey

Barack Obama

Populist:

Thomas Jefferson

Andrew Jackson

William Jennings Bryan

Huey Long

Woodrow Wilson

Stephen Douglas

James Madison

Independent:

George Washington

Socialist:

Eugene Debs

If anyone has other ideas for interesting candidates, or changes to make in the above framework, I welcome them.

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Okay, I've got a working draft of the parties and candidates:

Democratic:

Franklin Roosevelt

John F. Kennedy

Ted Kennedy

Robert F. Kennedy

Lyndon Johnson

Hillary Clinton

Bill Clinton

Al Gore

Robert La Follette

Republican:

Ronald Reagan

Strom Thurmond

Robert Taft

Calvin Coolidge

John Calhoun

Jefferson Davis

Barry Goldwater

Dwight Eisenhower

Richard Nixon

Whig:

Abraham Lincoln

Theodore Roosevelt

Alexander Hamilton

Daniel Webster

Henry Clay

Nelson Rockefeller

Thomas Dewey

Barack Obama

Populist:

Thomas Jefferson

Andrew Jackson

William Jennings Bryan

Huey Long

Woodrow Wilson

Stephen Douglas

James Madison

Independent:

George Washington

Socialist:

Eugene Debs

If anyone has other ideas for interesting candidates, or changes to make in the above framework, I welcome them.

Harry Truman (Democratic) and George Bush I (Republican) should definitely be in there. Truman influenced U.S. foreign policy for the Cold War and the next 45 years. After Bush lost to Clinton, the economy improved and he left office with 56% approval rating.

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Is there any chance I could sneak Truman into the Populist party? He did kind of have a man-of-the-people-y reputation, and I'm looking to add populists, more than Democrats. I've already got plenty of them, although since it's mainly Clintons and Kennedies there might be room for another non-dynasty type.

As for Bush I, I dunno, I just feel like in the grand scheme of American political history he's a bit of a nothing, you know? Sort of like Gerald Ford: he just didn't really do much. Things were good under him, and then things were bad under him; he was popular and then he was unpopular, and then popular again, but he didn't really amount to anything. If you look at all the other people on this list, they were big-deal leaders, people who shaped the world around them. Did Bush the Elder do that?

Now, obviously, Bush the Younger did that, but the problem with him is that his reputation is more or less unreconstructed, to a degree I don't think even Nixon can match. I think I'd be more likely to include the Younger Bush than the Elder Bush, though, because he just seems like a bigger-deal figure. And, besides, I don't actually have anyone to Reagan's right flank within modern conservativism, as opposed to the old-timey hard-core racist wing.

Any ideas for other minor-party candidates whom it would make sense to include, besides Debs, would also be nice. I think I lean against Perot, largely because he just didn't have much of a point. Not really sure there's anyone else, but again, it doesn't have to be someone who actually ran for President.

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Is there any chance I could sneak Truman into the Populist party? He did kind of have a man-of-the-people-y reputation, and I'm looking to add populists, more than Democrats. I've already got plenty of them, although since it's mainly Clintons and Kennedies there might be room for another non-dynasty type.

As for Bush I, I dunno, I just feel like in the grand scheme of American political history he's a bit of a nothing, you know? Sort of like Gerald Ford: he just didn't really do much. Things were good under him, and then things were bad under him; he was popular and then he was unpopular, and then popular again, but he didn't really amount to anything. If you look at all the other people on this list, they were big-deal leaders, people who shaped the world around them. Did Bush the Elder do that?

Now, obviously, Bush the Younger did that, but the problem with him is that his reputation is more or less unreconstructed, to a degree I don't think even Nixon can match. I think I'd be more likely to include the Younger Bush than the Elder Bush, though, because he just seems like a bigger-deal figure. And, besides, I don't actually have anyone to Reagan's right flank within modern conservativism, as opposed to the old-timey hard-core racist wing.

Any ideas for other minor-party candidates whom it would make sense to include, besides Debs, would also be nice. I think I lean against Perot, largely because he just didn't have much of a point. Not really sure there's anyone else, but again, it doesn't have to be someone who actually ran for President.

President George Bush had a strong foreign policy (over seeing the end of the Soviet Union and signing the START Treaty), overthrew a dictator in Panama and formed a coalition (that included the Arab League) that kicked Iraq's *** during the Gulf War and the highest approval rating in history (before his son) 89%. Of course he amounted to alot. He is not nothing. All most people remember of President George Bush was the economy was not good under him and it got much better after Bill Clinton took office. Actually, the economy got better after President Bush was defeated, but before Bill Clinton took office.

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Yeah, Bush Sr accomplished alot... foreign policy was his strength.

President George Bush had a strong foreign policy (over seeing the end of the Soviet Union and signing the START Treaty), overthrew a dictator in Panama and formed a coalition (that included the Arab League) that kicked Iraq *** during the Gulf War and the highest approval rating in history (before his son) 89%. Of course he amounted to alot.

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Maybe you could add in the Doles, Bob and Elizabeth... that would be funny, husband and wife quarrel. Throw in the Clintons as well...

Is there any chance I could sneak Truman into the Populist party? He did kind of have a man-of-the-people-y reputation, and I'm looking to add populists, more than Democrats. I've already got plenty of them, although since it's mainly Clintons and Kennedies there might be room for another non-dynasty type.

As for Bush I, I dunno, I just feel like in the grand scheme of American political history he's a bit of a nothing, you know? Sort of like Gerald Ford: he just didn't really do much. Things were good under him, and then things were bad under him; he was popular and then he was unpopular, and then popular again, but he didn't really amount to anything. If you look at all the other people on this list, they were big-deal leaders, people who shaped the world around them. Did Bush the Elder do that?

Now, obviously, Bush the Younger did that, but the problem with him is that his reputation is more or less unreconstructed, to a degree I don't think even Nixon can match. I think I'd be more likely to include the Younger Bush than the Elder Bush, though, because he just seems like a bigger-deal figure. And, besides, I don't actually have anyone to Reagan's right flank within modern conservativism, as opposed to the old-timey hard-core racist wing.

Any ideas for other minor-party candidates whom it would make sense to include, besides Debs, would also be nice. I think I lean against Perot, largely because he just didn't have much of a point. Not really sure there's anyone else, but again, it doesn't have to be someone who actually ran for President.

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That leaves Adams, Monroe, Adams, Van Buren, Polk, Grant, Cleveland, Harrison, McKinley, Taft, Coolidge, Hoover, Truman, Eisenhower, Johnson, Nixon, Carter, Bush, Bush, and Obama on the bubble.

IMO, Monroe, Quincy Adams, Van Buren, Harrison, Taft, Coolidge and Carter shouldn't be included. I'd definitely include Polk (Texas annexation, Mexican–American War), McKinley (first President of the Progressive Era, Spanish–American War), Truman (end of World War Two, start of Cold War, won re-election against the odds, Korean War, recognition of Israel, McCarthyism), Johnson (Vietnam War, Civil Rights Act of 1964, Great Society), Nixon (Watergate, Vietnam War, bombing of Cambodia, creation of EPA, opening of trade with China), Bush Jr. (9/11, Iraq and Afghanistan wars, elected in controversial circumstances, Hurricane Katrina, financial crisis) and Obama (first African-American President, healthcare reform, tough economic times, killing of Bin Laden, Arab Spring).

Not sure about the others, but I'd lean towards including Adams, Eisenhower and Bush Sr.

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I don't think Van Buren needs to included...

Harrison? William Henry or Benjamin? Neither one should be included.

Put Eisenhower in the game. It would be awesome with Ike.

Throw in Teddy Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson.

IMO, Monroe, Quincy Adams, Van Buren, Harrison, Taft, Coolidge and Carter shouldn't be included. I'd definitely include Polk (Texas annexation, Mexican–American War), McKinley (first President of the Progressive Era, Spanish–American War), Truman (end of World War Two, start of Cold War, won re-election against the odds, Korean War, recognition of Israel, McCarthyism), Johnson (Vietnam War, Civil Rights Act of 1964, Great Society), Nixon (Watergate, Vietnam War, bombing of Cambodia, creation of EPA, opening of trade with China), Bush Jr. (9/11, Iraq and Afghanistan wars, elected in controversial circumstances, Hurricane Katrina, financial crisis) and Obama (first African-American President, healthcare reform, tough economic times, killing of Bin Laden, Arab Spring).

Not sure about the others, but I'd lean towards including Adams, Eisenhower and Bush Sr.

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IMO, Monroe, Quincy Adams, Van Buren, Harrison, Taft, Coolidge and Carter shouldn't be included. I'd definitely include Polk (Texas annexation, Mexican–American War), McKinley (first President of the Progressive Era, Spanish–American War), Truman (end of World War Two, start of Cold War, won re-election against the odds, Korean War, recognition of Israel, McCarthyism), Johnson (Vietnam War, Civil Rights Act of 1964, Great Society), Nixon (Watergate, Vietnam War, bombing of Cambodia, creation of EPA, opening of trade with China), Bush Jr. (9/11, Iraq and Afghanistan wars, elected in controversial circumstances, Hurricane Katrina, financial crisis) and Obama (first African-American President, healthcare reform, tough economic times, killing of Bin Laden, Arab Spring).

Not sure about the others, but I'd lean towards including Adams, Eisenhower and Bush Sr.

I'm pretty sure I agree about all of these suggestions. I've already got Truman, Johnson, Nixon, and Obama in. Polk, I think, is a Populist in my above party-scheme, right? Is McKinley a Republican or a Whig? Bush Jr.'s pretty clearly a Republican. I might be interested in Adams Sr., probably as a Whig. Ike's already in, I think, and I continue to be severely skeptical of Bush Sr.

I wouldn't mind a few more weren't-ever-actually-President candidates, though.

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I'm pretty sure I agree about all of these suggestions. I've already got Truman, Johnson, Nixon, and Obama in. Polk, I think, is a Populist in my above party-scheme, right? Is McKinley a Republican or a Whig? Bush Jr.'s pretty clearly a Republican. I might be interested in Adams Sr., probably as a Whig. Ike's already in, I think, and I continue to be severely skeptical of Bush Sr.

I wouldn't mind a few more weren't-ever-actually-President candidates, though.

The result of President George Bush Sr.'s Iraq Coalition (which included the Arab League significantly influenced President Obama's Libya policy. Obama followed that model and built a coalition between NATO and several Middle Eastern Countries during Libya. President George Bush Sr. witnessed the end of the Cold War during his Presidency. He brought freedom and democracy to world in responsible way. All of the modern day (Post WWII) Presidents helped shaped the world today. Saying anything else is simply false.

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Okay, but the standard for inclusion in this game is very high. Remember, I really do want to leave out quite a few actual Presidents. And that needs to include plenty of recent ones. Honestly I'm on the fence about Bush the Younger; does he really belong in the company of all the others? Does George H.W. Bush belong with them? (I know you can make a pretty strong case that Obama doesn't belong on that list either. He's included for two reasons: one, because if he gets re-elected and has a good second term he might very well belong, and two, because I don't actually want zero non-whites included.

Speaking of which, would MLK make a good inclusion? Maybe as an off-by-default Socialist who would transform that party away from being an utterly minor party?

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Okay, but the standard for inclusion in this game is very high. Remember, I really do want to leave out quite a few actual Presidents. And that needs to include plenty of recent ones. Honestly I'm on the fence about Bush the Younger; does he really belong in the company of all the others? Does George H.W. Bush belong with them? (I know you can make a pretty strong case that Obama doesn't belong on that list either. He's included for two reasons: one, because if he gets re-elected and has a good second term he might very well belong, and two, because I don't actually want zero non-whites included.

Speaking of which, would MLK make a good inclusion? Maybe as an off-by-default Socialist who would transform that party away from being an utterly minor party?

On a historical perpective including George W. Bush and Barack Obama is very much premature. Clinton and Bush I have at least some time for their legacys to take shape (they turn out well).

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A recent scholarly ranking of Presidents went as follows: Roosevelt, F; Roosevelt, T; Lincoln; Washington; Jefferson; Madison; Monroe; Wilson; Truman; Eisenhower; Kennedy; Polk; Clinton; Jackson; Obama; Johnson, L; Adams, Sr.; Reagan; Adams, Jr.; Cleveland; McKinley; Bush, Sr.; Van Buren; Taft; Arthur; Grant; Garfield; Ford; Coolidge; Nixon; Hayes; Carter; Taylor; Harrison, B; Harrison, W; Hoover; Tyler; Fillmore; Bush, Jr.; Pierce; Harding; Buchanan; Johnson, A. The only people lower on that list that George H.W. Bush that I would even consider including are Nixon and George W. Bush, both because, while their Administrations ended wickedly unpopular and marred by scandals/failures, they were larger-than-life figures. I'm incredibly open to not including Dubya, honestly, because there are just so few people who have anything nice to say about him, while Nixon at the very least had some major accomplishments, although I do want a representative of modern hard-right Republicanism.

Basically, the criteria for inclusion in this scenario are either "among U.S. Presidents, this person stands out as extraordinary" or "this person really should've been President." Obama, Nixon, and Bush Jr. are somewhat special cases, for the various reasons listed above; Eugene Debs gets in for a different reason. But basically I just don't think that Bush I meets either of those criteria, and I don't see a particularly compelling reason to grant him the special exemption.

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A recent scholarly ranking of Presidents went as follows: Roosevelt, F; Roosevelt, T; Lincoln; Washington; Jefferson; Madison; Monroe; Wilson; Truman; Eisenhower; Kennedy; Polk; Clinton; Jackson; Obama; Johnson, L; Adams, Sr.; Reagan; Adams, Jr.; Cleveland; McKinley; Bush, Sr.; Van Buren; Taft; Arthur; Grant; Garfield; Ford; Coolidge; Nixon; Hayes; Carter; Taylor; Harrison, B; Harrison, W; Hoover; Tyler; Fillmore; Bush, Jr.; Pierce; Harding; Buchanan; Johnson, A. The only people lower on that list that George H.W. Bush that I would even consider including are Nixon and George W. Bush, both because, while their Administrations ended wickedly unpopular and marred by scandals/failures, they were larger-than-life figures. I'm incredibly open to not including Dubya, honestly, because there are just so few people who have anything nice to say about him, while Nixon at the very least had some major accomplishments, although I do want a representative of modern hard-right Republicanism.

Basically, the criteria for inclusion in this scenario are either "among U.S. Presidents, this person stands out as extraordinary" or "this person really should've been President." Obama, Nixon, and Bush Jr. are somewhat special cases, for the various reasons listed above; Eugene Debs gets in for a different reason. But basically I just don't think that Bush I meets either of those criteria, and I don't see a particularly compelling reason to grant him the special exemption.

Aggregate of Scholar survey results shows the Bush (22) which close to Bill Clinton (20) and Ronald Reagan (17). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historical_rankings_of_Presidents_of_the_United_States#Scholar_survey_results

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