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I Like Ike

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I'm maybe 50% of the way through a 1952 scenario, using actual delegate totals and selection dates (thanks to an invaluable source called Presidential Nominating Politics in 1952. Could have been written specifically for this purpose, had it not come out in 1954).

Candidates are:


Dwight D Eisenhower

Robert Taft

Earl Warren

Harold Stassen

Theodore McKeldin (favorite son)

Thomas Werdel (ran against Warren as stalking horse for Taft)


Adlai Stevenson

Estes Kefauver

Richard Russell

Alben Barkley

Averell Harriman

Robert Kerr

Hubert Humphrey (favorite son)

Paul Dever (favorite son)

J. William Fulbright (favorite son)

James Murray (favorite son)

Pat Brown (anti-Kefauver candidate in California)

I will likely add General Macarthur, since he had some minor delegate strength. And probably Truman, turned off by default.

The GOP side I've managed to get to be fairly balanced and reflective of the way it happened, so I just need to tweak some issue positions and starting money (if there are any reliable sources of campaign spending from that year, it would be a huge help). The Democratic side is tougher, since the South is tough to model, so I've been having to go state-by-state for most candidates, toying with their committed/leaning/undecided/alienated percentages. And if my assumptions of how those work are wrong, it'll take longer. I'm modeling Truman's participation in New Hampshire by just giving VP Barkley his strength there. My goal is for the Democratic nomination fight to come down more or less how it did: Kefauver sweeps most of the primaries, but not much anywhere else; Russell controls the South; everyone else parcels up the rest. Ideally, it should go to an open convention at least 60% of the time. That might take some doing.

I used the 1960 scenario as a base because the electoral votes are the same (minus Alaska and Hawaii), and I've been working on some new issues (Korea, Joe McCarthy, etc). I will hopefully have everything ready for playthroughs by the middle of next week. It can be space-barred as a Democrat to get a decent GOP nomination, but there are still things I am trying to fix. If anyone has good info on anything from that election that would be of use, I appreciate the help.

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I found this document after a bit of googling around. With some trial and error, I should be able to tab the combined cost of a radio and a TV ad in Texas to just over 6 grand. Then, unless faced with compelling evidence of how much fundraising was actually done, I can just balance things to run comparably to other scenarios.

Other progress reports, I've got everyone's percentages in, and the GOP nomination runs to my liking, generally very close between Taft and Eisenhower. The Democratic nomination is still a little wonky, so I might need to toy with alienated percentages or something to prevent things like Russell winning New Hampshire and then sweeping the nation. That wasn't happening in 1952.

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