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Alternate History

John List Becomes President

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Background: November 9th, 1971 John List kills his mother, wife, and three children in Westfield, New Jersey. He then ran away hiding under the pseudonym Robert Peter "Bob" Clark.

Evangelicalism

Bob Clark moves to Virginia and turns to evangelicalism, soon becoming a very influential preacher at a megachurch, and appearing on talk shows. He gives speeches about the moral decay of America, and about a return to conservative, traditional values. He is able to con a small cabal of evangelical Christians into helping him forge documents, including a birth certificate, citizenship, a master's in theology, and other documents. He tells them he is taking on a new identity, because his old is tainted by sin and it is symbolic. He also says that his old identity would lead to scandal and make it hard to preach God's word. He makes up a story about being a recovered homosexual who had participated in the Stonewall Riots to explain to his inner circle why he can not use his old identity.

1973 Gubernatorial Election

John List runs as Bob Clark and secures the nomination away from the other Republican contender, Mills Godwin, a former Democrat who had already been Republican and had switched parties. He wins with ads accusing Godwin of being an opportunistic party-switcher and touts himself as a true, life-long Republican. He then goes on to win against his Democratic opponent, Henry Howell who had been lieutenant governor under the previous Republican governorship. "Clark" wins.

Death of Police Chief

The state's police chief appointed by "Clark", Carl Browne is found dead in 1975. The death is ruled a suicide, but future investigations would reveal that the governor and his conspirators had him killed, because he was close to discovering his true identity.

Senate

Because the state constitution prohibits consecutive terms Clark retires in 1978 after helping his Lieutenant Governor, John Dalton become the next governor in the 1977 elections. Since Senator William Scott was not running for reelection "Clark" decided to run for his seat, and won against Democrat Andrew P. Miller.

As Senator "Bob Clark" authors the Tax Cut Act, although it is vetoed by President Carter. He also proposed bills to increase military spending.

1980 Election

"Bob Clark" runs for president. At the Republican National Convention he, Reagan, and Bush are the frontrunners. Clark emphasizes some of the same economic programs as Reagan while going heavy on the "moral decay" of America, calling for an even stronger escalation in the war on drugs than Reagan. Bob Clark comes in second losing only to Reagan who picks him as his running mate. Reagan wins in a landslide against Carter.

Reagan Assassination

On March 30th, just 69 days into office Reagan was shot. He is taken to George Washington hospital, which soon catches on fire. Later documents would reveal that the vice president had secret operative start the fire, although the vice president himself did not order the assassination though he was planning a July assassination. Reagan had to be rushed out of George Washington hospital and died 2 hours later at another hospital. "Bob Clark" was now president.

Clark Administration

Clark chose Jerry Falwell as his vice president, which was barely confirmed by the Senate.

War

Clark would get the nation into a number of wars, which psychologists say was related to his sadism.

Clark would get the country involved in Afghanistan and Grenada. Grenada was lasted about a month. Clark had American troops go into Afghanistan. The Soviet Union threatened nuclear retaliation, but Clark announced that the United States wasn't afraid of Soviet nukes and would annihilate the Soviet Union if so much as one nuke exploded on the United States. The Soviets agree to fight the war in Afghanistan without nuclear weapons. The war would last from 1981-1983. He then enters the Iraq-Iran War on the side of Iraq, stating that Iran must be brought back under the control of American interests. This statement is used to paint him as an imperialist. Clark touts American moral superiority and denounces the Soviet Union as imperialist. In 1984 he wins against Walter Mondale. The war in Iran would last for the remainder of his office.

Intimidation

Clark's administration starts a secret program to assassinate political opponents and to manipulate the general political scene in America. Clark wiretaps secretly without warrants, and establishes secret prisons.

'Moral' Reform

Clark leads a moral crusade in America, championing an amendment to reverse Roe v. Wade, which never passes. However, he appoints 3 new Supreme Court justices. 2 of them are passed before the 1982 Congressional elections, which put evangelical Republicans in charge of the House, and powerful in the Senate. These 2 do not support repealing Roe v. Wade, but the last 1 in his 2nd term does. He also institutes a mandatory death penalty for drug dealing in even small amounts.

1984 Election

Clark easily wins against Walter Mondale. At first he ponders assassinating him, but political advisors assure him that defeating Mondale would be easy and it was.

1988 Election

Unable to get an amendment passed allowing him to run for another term Falwell runs for president with Fred Thomspon, and wins against Jesse Jackson. Sneaky maneuvering is used to make sure Jackson wins the Democratic primaries, since Clark predicts Jackson would lose for sure. He is right. Jerry Falwell wins in every state, and only loses in the District of Columbia. However, Jesse Jackson makes many speeches condemning the president as a moral hypocrit, which the public looking in retrospect a few years later come to admire.

Falwell Administration

After Falwell's administration starts he signs a crime bill in 1989 which repeals an amendment that Clark had quietly put into it that prohibited any police station from investigating crimes committed by the legally dead. Clark, unaware of this change remains unafraid of discovery for his murders. However, in 1990 with enough evidence to convict Clark the New Jersey police have him arrested. It is revealed to the public that their previous president was really John List. Speculation, which proved untrue that Falwell and even Thompson who had been Secretary of State under "Clark" knew about this lead to their resignation, which puts Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich in the presidency. Under popular pressure Gingrich ends the war in Iran. Clark is sentenced to death and executed in 1991. Meanwhile, the Soviet Union is collapsing.

Gingrich Administration

In 1992 Gingrich makes an off-color comment, "it was a bad choice but otherwise the Soviets might still be in power." This makes Gingrich sound apologetic to the years of List rule. Gingrich is defeated for re-nomination by the Republican Party for president by Jack Kemp. Kemp along his running mate Bob Dole are defeated in a landslide by Bill Clinton/Al Gore.

Aftermath

America's economy does great under the Clinton administration. However, when President Clinton is caught cheating on his wife in 1999 his approval ratings plumit. In 2000 Al Gore loses against John McCain by a wide margin. There are no terror attacks, because Afghanistan is a stable democracy in this scenario. In 2004 John McCain wins re-election in a landslide over Democrat Howard Dean. In 2008 John Kaisch is defeated by Barack Obama. In 2009 Barack Obama becomes the 45th and first African American President of the United States.

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