Alternate History

Election of 2004 (Every Man a King)

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The United States presidential election of 2004 was the 55th quadrennial presidential election, held on Tuesday, November 2, 2004. The Republicans nominated newspaper publisher and Senator John McCain while the Democrats reluctantly accepted incumbent President Al Gore as their candidate despite an insurgency by John Kerry. Gore kept Vice President Bill Bradley as his running mate, and McCain, to signal a more moderate Republican Party willing to work with Democrats, chose a moderate Democrat as his running mate, Joe Lieberman from Connecticut. McCain would ultimately win in a landslide.

The election was dominated by the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks and a hostile response to certain policies of Al Gore, as well as the massive reaction against Gore's economic transformation to rebuild American infrastructure with an enviornmentally-friendly dynamic. In addition, the economic boom of the mid and late 1990s came to an end and employment stagnated.  Overseas, there was unrest, including civil wars in southeastern Europe and the Middle East. The Russian and Arab communities were outraged at Gore's foreign policy, and his political position was critically weakened after he suffered a stroke in the beginning of 2004. Gore's inability to control the tide of radical Islamic terrorism was his greatest criticism.

McCain hammered home his experience as a veteran, as a senator, his accute understanding of foreign policy, and his willingness to unite America in opposition to terrorism. These factors combined to push him over the edge in November.

Candidate John McCain Al Gore
Al Gore closeup
Party Republican Democratic
Home State Arizona Tennessee

Vice President,


Running Mate Joe Lieberman Bill Bradley
Percentage 60% 34%
Prior Candidate George W. Bush Al Gore

Previous Election: 2000

Next Election: 2008

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