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United States Presidential Election, 1964


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The current President Forever game engine can't handle any of the old elections the way they actually occurred. With no way to simulate party bosses and statewide conventions, any time prior to 1972 for Democrats and 1976 for Republicans can't really be modeled that well. While Electric Monk has done a fabulous job with 1968, the game engine still does everything it can to stop it from working. So, rather than try to make the game engine fit 1964, I'm going to try to make 1964 fit the game engine.

I'll have to create a primary calender - I don't want a Super-Duper Tuesday like we saw this year. Something more spread out will work much better. All states that actually had a primary will vote on the actual dates.

So, now that I've explained the method to my madness, let's get to the fun part.

DEMOCRATS

PRESIDENT Lyndon B. Johnson of Texas

GOVERNOR George C. Wallace of Alabama

GOVERNOR Pat Brown of California (Favorite Son)

MAYOR Sam Yorty of California (Favorite Son)

GOVERNOR John Reynolds of Wisconsin (Favorite Son)

GOVERNOR Matthew Welsh of Indiana (Favorite Son)

SENATOR Jennings Randolph of West Virginia (Favorite Son)

SENATOR Daniel Brewster of Maryland (Favorite Son)

ATTORNEY GENERAL Robert F. Kennedy of New York (Off by Default)

REPUBLICANS

SENATOR Barry Goldwater of Arizona

GOVERNOR Nelson Rockefeller of New York

GOVERNOR William Scranton of Pennsylvania (Favorite Son for Rockefeller)

AMBASSADOR Henry Cabot Lodge of Massachusetts

SENATOR Margaret Chase Smith of Maine

GOVERNOR James Rhodes of Ohio (Favorite Son)

CONGRESSMAN John Byrnes of Wisconsin (Favorite Son)

SENATOR Hiram Fong of Hawaii (Favorite Son)

FMR. VICE-PRESIDENT Richard Nixon (off by default)

Johnson will have a heavy lead on the Democratic side, though if RFK is in, his lead will shrink. If Kennedy had offered such a challenge, LBJ would have been heavily favored, but in a primary system, anything is possible.

Goldwater and Rockefeller should begin effectively tied, perhaps with Goldwater holding a slight lead. The general election shouldn't be close, but Rockefeller could give Johnson a run for his money.

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Some ideas:

After JFK's assassination, there was a political moratorium. The primaries didn't really start until January 1964.

Would it be possible to incorporate a "what-if" scenario, where John F. Kennedy is not assassinated?

-If you plan on including the option of keeping JFK alive, he won't get the sympathy votes and the election won't be as big of a landslide. Also, JFK and Goldwater were friends; they had planned to debate each other on Air Force One during the fall. If JFK survives debates should be included, or maybe the percentage for debates should be at 40%.

Henry Cabot Lodge won in New Hampshire, Massachusetts and New Jersey due to a write-in campaign. After that he said he wasn't interested in running, and stopped receiving votes. Lodge should be a candidate.

Wallace did well in Indiana, Maryland and Wisconsin against the favorite sons. Although he had almost no chance of winning the nomination, he should be polling well in those states.

Rockefeller's wife gave birth to a son just before the California primary. This brought up the issue of adultery, as Rockefeller was married before and some Republicans claimed he had an extramarital affair with his second wife. Rockefeller was leading in the polls until this point, when he narrowly lost California to Goldwater. This should be a major scandal that devastates Rockefeller.

The white, pro-segregation delegates from Mississippi walked out of the Democratic Convention. This should be an event that takes place during the convention.

Johnson's infamous "Daisy Girl" ad aired on September 7, 1964. This should either be some kind of event or an attack ad that is devastating to Goldwater.

Many moderate Republicans like Rockefeller and Romney refused to endorse or support Goldwater. If he is the nominee, these people should not endorse him.

President Herbert Hoover died on October 20, 1964. Both parties stopped campaigning for a week. This should be a major event.

Let me know if any of this is helpful.

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There's not a lot of books.

  • Making of the President, 1964—Theordore H. White
  • The Road to the White House: The 1964 Election—By the staff of the NYTimes & Harold Faber, Ed.
  • Before the Storm: Barry Goldwater and the Unmaking of the American Consensus—Rick Perlstein
  • Campaign Decision-Making: The Presidential Election of 1964—Karl A Lamb (haven't read it)
  • 1964 Guide to Conventions & Elections—CBS News (haven't read it)

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There's not a lot of books.

  • Making of the President, 1964—Theordore H. White
  • The Road to the White House: The 1964 Election—By the staff of the NYTimes & Harold Faber, Ed.
  • Before the Storm: Barry Goldwater and the Unmaking of the American Consensus—Rick Perlstein
  • Campaign Decision-Making: The Presidential Election of 1964—Karl A Lamb (haven't read it)
  • 1964 Guide to Conventions & Elections—CBS News (haven't read it)

Thanks. It won't be easy, given that I'll be estimating popular state in states that didn't really have a primary. Perlstein is one of my favorite authors - have you read Nixonland yet? Excellent book.

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Thanks. It won't be easy, given that I'll be estimating popular state in states that didn't really have a primary. Perlstein is one of my favorite authors - have you read Nixonland yet? Excellent book.

Yeah Nixonland is great, Perlstein is really knocking his series out of the park—can't wait for part 3, and Reagan.

Oh, and from the old '64 scenario try here for some data. The primary percentages for the GOP.

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