Accountability: The Fall of Bill Clinton

How long will TTL go to? 2020?
I have an outline to 2016 election and that supposed administration, not all firm. I started musing on this over a year ago so didn’t want to get ahead of real life, but now the 2020 election is upon us.

Given the recent clarification on “current politics,” I am somewhat hesitant to try and do an alt 2020 during the election. But none of the party candidates are the same.
 
Read this all over the course of a couple hours, really interesting stuff. Can I infer that these were the electoral maps for 2000 and 2004?
Screenshot_2020-08-19 2000 Presidential Election Interactive Map.png

Screenshot_2020-08-19 2004 Presidential Election Interactive Map.png
 
I have an outline to 2016 election and that supposed administration, not all firm. I started musing on this over a year ago so didn’t want to get ahead of real life, but now the 2020 election is upon us.

Given the recent clarification on “current politics,” I am somewhat hesitant to try and do an alt 2020 during the election. But none of the party candidates are the same.
Awesome good to hear!
 
Great TL! I have binged it in a couple of days. I have, for some reason, a soft spot for Al Gore, so I've always loved TLs centered around him. Yours is very good. I am eagerly waiting for more.
 
Who replaced Davis in Sacramento in 2004? Bustamante?
Yes, and he won the 2006 reelection against Darrel Issa (Arnold Schwarzenegger didn't run because his personal indiscretions came out earlier). Antonio Villaraigosa won the special election to replace Dianne Feinstein in 2002, but loss in 2006 to Condelezza Rice, mostly due to his personal indiscretions.
It seems that ITTL, Ohio and Missouri would cease to be considered as bellwether states much earlier than IOTL.
2000 Missouri was the closest to margin Republican victory. Bush IOTL won Missouri by 7 points in 2004, so it was certainly less of a bellweather over time. The presidential margin was closer in 2004, so Claire McCaskill won her gubernatorial race. Mel Carnahan lives ITTL, but lost to Sarah Steelman in 2006.
To be fair, Kasich probably helped the Republican ticket in Ohio in both 00 and 04.
Maybe slightly in 2000, certainly in 2004. The veep impact on home states, especially if they had not ran statewide previously, is suspect. In Ohio, Democrats won the gubernatorial race and lost the Senate race in 2006.
 
Ch. 27: The 2008 Race Begins
If it had not been so tawdry, the Louisiana gubernatorial race probably would not have been national news. Steve Beshear’s win in Kentucky and Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour’s reelection certainly did not get wide attention. But Governor David Vitter had a prostitute sex scandal, which certainly got people’s attention. Widely praised after Hurricane Karen, Vitter thought he could weather the media storm. He had several challengers in the unique jungle primary system. He had two major Republican challengers – State Treasurer John Kennedy (who switched parties just before the election) and Family Research Council President Tony Perkins. Both focused on the moral failings of the Governor, especially Perkins. Democrats meanwhile united behind former Senator John Breaux. Breaux was considered the most popular Democrat in the state and cleared the field for his party, with Lieutenant Governor Mitch Landrieu and his sister former Senator Mary Landrieu both declining to run one Breaux’s intentions were clear. Vitter, Perkins, and Kennedy all argued about which one of them could beat Breaux in a run-off, but apparently did themselves too much damage. Breaux won the November election with over 50%, avoiding any run-off.

huckabee 08.png

The Louisiana race was soon forgotten by political spectators as the Republicans came up to the Iowa caucus. The Des Moines Register held the final debate before the contests on December 12, before the holidays. Given the proximity to Christmas and New Year’s Eve, the narrative out of that debate was the one that lead into January 3. Mike Huckabee seemed to dominate the stage, comfortable with appeals to middle class Midwesterners. George Allen had made a splash with major news coverage and was considered the likely runner-up to Huckabee. MSNBC and CNN polls even showed Allen with a slight lead in Iowa in some polls just after Christmas. After that, it was difficult to trace how the other candidates placed in the horserace. When the results came in, there were some surprises.

As expected, Mike Huckabee won with a little over 30%. But it was Senator John Ensign that came in a surprise second at 21%, with Jeb Bush and George Allen tied for third at 12%. It was covered as a surprise win for Ensign and surprise loss for Allen, but roughly aligned with the Des Moines Register poll the same week as the MSNBC and CNN polls. New Hampshire was only 5 days after Iowa, with a debate in between, as the campaigns pivoted. Ensign had been catapulted to the front of media coverage and was the primary target of the debate. But the Senator seemed unprepared to fend off such constant rebukes, and the narrative changed again when the New Hampshire Union Leader endorsed Allen. With the endorsement bump, Allen eked out a victory over Jeb Bush, with Ensign and Sanford following. While the Wyoming caucus went unnoticed, the Michigan primary dominated a week away. It had moved up its vote earlier than Nevada and South Carolina, violating a Republican National Convention rule which led to half its delegates being stripped away. But with even half the delegates, was still the largest contest until Florida in two weeks, which was in the bag for Bush. Ensign’s media appearances had recovered after New Hampshire and his campaign hoped Michigan would be the contest to bring him back into the lead. They were sorely disappointed. It all came crashing down when an Ensign staffer's husband accused the Senator of having an affair. Beyond that, the Senator and his wife were close personal friends of the staffer and her husband. While Ensign denied it the same day, the high profile coverage of the primary turned the heat up on the candidate. Photographs from the campaign trail, of Ensign and the staffer in close quarters, surfaced immediately. Nothing was definitive but the implications were enough. Governor Mark Sanford, a close friend and even former housemate of Ensign’s, said the Senator should take time to sort his personal matters out. It was clear that his campaign was over.

ensign resign.png

With the endorsement of Governor Dick DeVos, Bush got his first campaign win in Michigan, but split the delegates with Sanford and Allen. The win was a good bump for a campaign that seemed listless and forgotten in the wake of juicy scandal coverage. But just four days later was Nevada and South Carolina. Sanford had an easy win in his home state, but with the sudden exit of Ensign, Nevada was wide open. Governor Kenny Guinn, considered a moderate, had some sway with his endorsement of Allen but he still came in second to Huckabee, whose campaign worked the caucus and had nurtured grassroots organization. The next and final major event before Super Tuesday was Florida. Everyone knew Bush would dominate the winner-take-all contest. In the Boca Raton, the debate stage got heated when the candidates moved to the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act. Senator Allen was the only one on stage who had actually voted on the bill, and said he now “regretted” his vote. Huckabee and Sanford both said they opposed the bill’s final form and would not have passed it. Only Bush said it was a good compromise, and as President he would strictly enforce it. The question was after the debate would come in second to Bush in the Sunshine state, who was still generally ahead in national polling as well. Huckabee’s grassroot ‘get out the vote’ team seemed to give him an edge, leaving both Allen and Sanford almost 10 points behind. Once again, a candidate who was flying under the radar of major news coverage got a boost in attention. Sanford, after coming in fourth place, saw two rough weeks ahead until Super Tuesday and was low on funding. After Florida, he dropped out and endorsed Allen.

Meanwhile, the night prior to the Florida primary had been President Gray Davis’s final State of the Union address before the election. Davis, never heralded as one of the great presidential orators, had grown more comfortable in the role over the past three years. It was an opportunity to lay out his accomplishments and set a new agenda that would be the blueprint for a second term. Off the record quotes said that President Davis was frustrated that he was not getting enough credit for his accomplishments. He had been underwater or close to it in approval polls for some time. His nadir had been on his 1000th day in office, polling as low as -10 approval. In the address, Davis listed his accolades and touted compromises he had made with Republicans. Domestically, immigration reform and the (slow) economic recovery were his biggest wins. Neither were very popular currently but approval polls were trending in the right direction. On the horizon, Davis hoped to pivot in his second term to grander foreign policy accomplishments. The Afghanistan surge was showing results. The North Korea agreement was continuing to show slow results. America, Davis said, was strong enough to “build democracy abroad.” While the majority of the speech was devoted to how Republicans and Democrats could accomplish great things together, near the end of his speech Davis hammered “Republican obstruction” for holding up appointments to the federal judiciary. Davis had only one Court of Appeals nominee approved since the midterm elections. For court watchers, it was a notable break from norms. The line saw major applause from Congressional Democrats and total silence from Republicans. As it was the previous year, the Republican response was given jointly by Speaker Christopher Cox and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, as not to highlight any favored figures during a primary process.

davis gore 2004.png
 
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I see what you did there!

Allen vs Jeb vs Huckabee is shaping up to be a fun contest. Give or take is the 2008 primary calendar the same ITTL as it was OTL?
Yes, so far I’m trying to keep it the same to help myself narratively. Obviously the candidates in the arena makes a difference - no Giuliani to bomb out, for example.

Very good update--nice to see competition. Although 'Davis Grey' still is inferior compared to 'Drey Gavis', which was my ORIGINAL typo.
Thanks fixed. It is such a weird name.
 

Ficboy

Banned
If it had not been so tawdry, the Louisiana gubernatorial race probably would not have been national news. Steve Beshear’s win in Kentucky and Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour’s reelection certainly did not get wide attention. But Governor David Vitter had a prostitute sex scandal, which certainly got people’s attention. Widely praised after Hurricane Karen, Vitter thought he could weather the media storm. He had several challengers in the unique jungle primary system. He had two major Republican challengers – State Treasurer John Kennedy (who switched parties just before the election) and Family Research Council President Tony Perkins. Both focused on the moral failings of the Governor, especially Perkins. Democrats meanwhile united behind former Senator John Breaux. Breaux was considered the most popular Democrat in the state and cleared the field for his party, with Lieutenant Governor Mitch Landrieu and his sister former Senator Mary Landrieu both declining to run one Breaux’s intentions were clear. Vitter, Perkins, and Kennedy all argued about which one of them could beat Breaux in a run-off, but apparently did themselves too much damage. Breaux won the November election with over 50%, avoiding any run-off.


The Louisiana race was soon forgotten by political spectators as the Republicans came up to the Iowa caucus. The Des Moines Register held the final debate before the contests on December 12, before the holidays. Given the proximity to Christmas and New Year’s Eve, the narrative out of that debate was the one that lead into January 3. Mike Huckabee seemed to dominate the stage, comfortable with appeals to middle class Midwesterners. George Allen had made a splash with major news coverage and was considered the likely runner-up to Huckabee. MSNBC and CNN polls even showed Allen with a slight lead in Iowa in some polls just after Christmas. After that, it was difficult to trace how the other candidates placed in the horserace. When the results came in, there were some surprises.

As expected, Mike Huckabee won with a little over 30%. But it was Senator John Ensign that came in a surprise second at 21%, with Jeb Bush and George Allen tied for third at 12%. It was covered as a surprise win for Ensign and surprise loss for Allen, but roughly aligned with the Des Moines Register poll the same week as the MSNBC and CNN polls. New Hampshire was only 5 days after Iowa, with a debate in between, as the campaigns pivoted. Ensign had been catapulted to the front of media coverage and was the primary target of the debate. But the Senator seemed unprepared to fend off such constant rebukes, and the narrative changed again when the New Hampshire Union Leader endorsed Allen. With the endorsement bump, Allen eked out a victory over Jeb Bush, with Ensign and Sanford following. While the Wyoming caucus went unnoticed, the Michigan primary dominated a week away. It had moved up its vote earlier than Nevada and South Carolina, violating a Republican National Convention rule which led to half its delegates being stripped away. But with even half the delegates, was still the largest contest until Florida in two weeks, which was in the bag for Bush. Ensign’s media appearances had recovered after New Hampshire and his campaign hoped Michigan would be the contest to bring him back into the lead. They were sorely disappointed. It all came crashing down when an Ensign staffer's husband accused the Senator of having an affair. Beyond that, the Senator and his wife were close personal friends of the staffer and her husband. While Ensign denied it the same day, the high profile coverage of the primary turned the heat up on the candidate. Photographs from the campaign trail, of Ensign and the staffer in close quarters, surfaced immediately. Nothing was definitive but the implications were enough. Governor Mark Sanford, a close friend and even former housemate of Ensign’s, said the Senator should take time to sort his personal matters out. It was clear that his campaign was over.


With the endorsement of Governor Dick DeVos, Bush got his first campaign win in Michigan, but split the delegates with Sanford and Allen. The win was a good bump for a campaign that seemed listless and forgotten in the wake of juicy scandal coverage. But just four days later was Nevada and South Carolina. Sanford had an easy win in his home state, but with the sudden exit of Ensign, Nevada was wide open. Governor Kenny Guinn, considered a moderate, had some sway with his endorsement of Allen but he still came in second to Huckabee, whose campaign worked the caucus and had nurtured grassroots organization. The next and final major event before Super Tuesday was Florida. Everyone knew Bush would dominate the winner-take-all contest. In the Boca Raton, the debate stage got heated when the candidates moved to the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act. Senator Allen was the only one on stage who had actually voted on the bill, and said he now “regretted” his vote. Huckabee and Sanford both said they opposed the bill’s final form and would not have passed it. Only Bush said it was a good compromise, and as President he would strictly enforce it. The question was after the debate would come in second to Bush in the Sunshine state, who was still generally ahead in national polling as well. Huckabee’s grassroot ‘get out the vote’ team seemed to give him an edge, leaving both Allen and Sanford almost 10 points behind. Once again, a candidate who was flying under the radar of major news coverage got a boost in attention. Sanford, after coming in fourth place, saw two rough weeks ahead until Super Tuesday and was low on funding. After Florida, he dropped out and endorsed Allen.

Meanwhile, the night prior to the Florida primary had been President Gray Davis’s final State of the Union address before the election. Davis, never heralded as one of the great presidential orators, had grown more comfortable in the role over the past three years. It was an opportunity to lay out his accomplishments and set a new agenda that would be the blueprint for a second term. Off the record quotes said that President Davis was frustrated that he was not getting enough credit for his accomplishments. He had been underwater or close to it in approval polls for some time. His nadir had been on his 1000th day in office, polling as low as -10 approval. In the address, Davis listed his accolades and touted compromises he had made with Republicans. Domestically, immigration reform and the (slow) economic recovery were his biggest wins. Neither were very popular currently but approval polls were trending in the right direction. On the horizon, Davis hoped to pivot in his second term to grander foreign policy accomplishments. The Afghanistan surge was showing results. The North Korea agreement was continuing to show slow results. America, Davis said, was strong enough to “build democracy abroad.” While the majority of the speech was devoted to how Republicans and Democrats could accomplish great things together, near the end of his speech Davis hammered “Republican obstruction” for holding up appointments to the federal judiciary. Davis had only one Court of Appeals nominee approved since the midterm elections. For court watchers, it was a notable break from norms. The line saw major applause from Congressional Democrats and total silence from Republicans. As it was the previous year, the Republican response was given jointly by Speaker Christopher Cox and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, as not to highlight any favored figures during a primary process.

I wonder what pop culture looks like in Accountability: The Rise and Fall of Bill Clinton? Is it similar like OTL or different.
 
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