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Alternate History

Government and politics of West Texas (1983: Doomsday)

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National government

The President is elected for one term, lasting four years, and can serve a maximum of two terms. Representatives can serve unlimited terms of two years each, Senators unlimited terms of six years each.

West Texas has a plural executive branch system limiting the power of the President. Except for the Secretary of State, voters elect executive officers independently making candidates directly answerable to the public, not the President.

Executive branch positions consist of

  • President
  • Vice President
  • Secretary of State
  • Secretary of Defense
  • Secretary of Commerce
  • Secretary of Energy
  • Secretary of Labor
  • Secretary of Public Accounts
  • Secretary of the Interior
  • Secretary of Agriculture
  • Secretary of Transportation
  • Secretary of Education
  • Attorney General

The President and his family live in the President's Mansion, located near the Texas Capitol Building; the Vice-President and his family live in the Texas House, also located a short distance from the Texas Capitol Building.

The bicameral Texas Legislature consists of the House of Representatives, with 100 members (with districts set up throughout the nation according to population), and a Senate, with 50 members (one for each administrative district). The Speaker of the House leads the House, and the Vice President, the Senate. The Legislature meets in regular session anually, but the President can call for special sessions as often as desired.

The House and Senate meet in the Texas Capitol Building located in downtown Midland. The building was built as closely as possible to the specifications of the Texas State Capitol building in the nuked state capital of Austin. It would host the House and Senate of the unified Republic of Texas upon that nation's formal establishment.

Texas State Capitol building-front left front oblique view

The Texas Capitol Building in downtown Midland, a near-identical copy of the former State Capitol Building in Austin. Note that the United States flag flies above the West Texas flag. This is done once a year, each July 4, to commemorate West Texas's ties to the former U.S.

West Texas has two courts of last resort: the Supreme Court, for civil cases, and the Court of Criminal Appeals. Except for some municipal benches, partisan elections select judges at all levels of the judiciary; the President fills vacancies by appointment. The death penalty was not included in the constitution, as it was thought that there had been enough death in the aftermath of Doomsday.

The West Texas Supreme Court, like its Texas state predecessor, meets in a specially built building located behind the Texas Capitol Building in Midland.

Administrative divisions

DT Mid 123

The skyline of Midland, the capital of West Texas

Midland is divided into Midland proper, and the Republic Capital District, consisting of the State Capitol Building, the President's Residence, the Supreme Court Building, Army Headquarters and various government agencies.

The other divisions - labeled after the towns designated as the hubs for their respective areas - are:

  • Andrews
  • Artesia
  • Balmorhea
  • Barstow
  • Big Lake
  • Big Spring
  • Coyahosa
  • Crane
  • Denver City
  • Eldorado
  • Eunice
  • Carlsbad
  • Coahoma
  • Colorado City
  • Fort Davis
  • Fort Stockton
  • Gardendale
  • Goldsmith
  • Hobbs
  • Hope
  • Imperial
  • Kermit
  • Lake Arthur
  • Lamesa
  • Lindsay
  • Loving
  • Lovington
  • McCarney
  • Monahans
  • O'Donnell
  • Odessa
  • Ozona
  • Pecos
  • Rankin
  • Roscoe
  • Rotan
  • Seagraves
  • Seminole
  • Snyder
  • Sonora
  • Stanton
  • Sterling City
  • Toyah
  • West Odessa
  • Westbrook
  • Wickett
  • Wink
  • Valentine
  • Van Horn

Territories

  • San Angelo
  • Waco
  • El Paso (military use only)

The divisional organization, used initially by the Provisional Government of the Cities of Western Texas and Southwestern New Mexico which preceded West Texas, was seen as more practical than the pre-Doomsday county organizational structure. As people looked for food, medicine and supplies, they went to the major towns in their areas. This led to towns gaining power at the expense of the county governments, and the divisional substructure was adopted by the West Texas government.

The counties still exist on paper - although they are subject to the governments of the towns that lie within them. Borders of the pre-Doomsday counties, in fact, are used to determine the borders of West Texas and the other survivor states within old Texas. The proposed Republic of Texas constitution divides the proposed nation of Texas into counties, as opposed to using the West Texas town divisional substructure.

Politics

West Texas politics are dominated by the regional successors to the U.S. Democratic and Republican Parties. Republican candidates have won each of the Republic's six presidential elections. The members tend to reflect the region's social conservatism and religious views; where the parties tend to differ are in regards to government's responsibility to help citizens, and on the long-contested issues of isolationism.

The more conservative Republicans dominated national politics for years. The most conservative Republicans also pushed to impose censorship on the media and on popular music, but were consistently opposed by the Democrats and more moderate Republicans.


Steve pearce

Vice President Steve Pearce

Harry Teague

Senator Harry Teague (D-Hobbs), the Democratic Party's Presidential candidate


Democrats also have long spoken in favor of government responsibility to hold business in check, and to assist people when necessary, always pointing back to the early years when the cities banded together to help their people survive. The party opposed censorship measures proposed by conservative Republicans, as well as bills sponsored by conservatives that would have had the effect of marginalizing the Catholic church and making the West Texas Baptist Convention the de facto state church. Lobbying has increased in recent years, with the petroleum industry and Baptist-based family organizations being the most prominent of the various lobbyists.

2009 presidential campaign

Conaway, the incumbent President, ran for a second term as the Republican Party's candidate. Steve Pearce, a Republican from Hobbs and the Vice-President during Conaway's first term, was again the VP candidate in '09.

The Democratic Party chose Harry Teague, a ranking minority senator from Hobbs, as their Presidential candidate.

Elections were held on November 3. With 100% of the votes counted, the results were:

  • Mike Conaway (Republican) 290,172
  • Harry Teague (Democratic) 131,595
  • Federico Aguayo (New Texas Party) 1,967
  • Jeffery McLellan (American Party) 560

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