Alternate History

Timeline (King '80)

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  • November 3: The Kennedy/Johnson ticket is reelected over the conservative Republican ticket of Barry Goldwater and Henry Miller in a landslide.


  • January 20: Kennedy and Johnson are sworn in once again. Bobby Kennedy steps down as Attorney General; Hubert Humphrey is chosen to replace him.


  • Samuel Byck attempts to hijack an airplane, intent on crashing into the White House and assassinating President Kennedy. A police standoff ensues and Byck commits suicide.


  • As Kennedy's final term begins the wind down, his approval ratings are generally high among all Americans. However, by the time Henry M. Jackson is chosen as the Democratic Party's nominee, multiple accounts of sex scandals and the uncovering of Kennedy's previously undisclosed health issues stain his popularity. A senate vote to seek Kennedy's impeachment falls short. Kennedy later makes public apology.
  • November 5: Despite efforts by Republicans, using Kennedy's scandals to paint Democrats as dishonest, Henry M. Jackson and his running mate George McGovern win the 1968 election over George Romney and Margaret Chase Smith (the first woman to gain a vice presidential nomination).


  • January 20: Henry M. Jackson is sworn in as the 36th President of the United States; George McGovern is sworn in as the 38th Vice President of the United States. Among Jackson's cabinet: Edmund Muskie as Secretary of State, Sargent Shriver as Secretary of Defense, and George Smathers as Attorney General.
  • January 22: In an interview held only two days after Jackson's inauguration, Bobby Kennedy confirms that he is planning on a presidential run in the future.


  • January 3: Gerald Ford becomes Speaker of the House.


  • November 7: The Republican ticket of Nelson Rockefeller and Charles H. Percy defeat Jackson/McGovern.


  • September 5: As President Rockefeller exits a hotel, Lynette Fromme (a member of the Manson family) attempts to shoot him; the gun jams and she is quickly apprehended.


  • November 2: Rockfeller/Percy receive a solid victory over the Democratic ticket of Edmund Muskie and Frank Church.


  • January 3: Gerald Ford steps down as Speaker of the House, with rumors circulating that he is planning a presidential run.
  • January 4: Leslie C. Arends becomes Speaker of the House.


  • January 26: While in the Oval Office, President Rockefeller begins to suffer a heart attack. His secretary is quickly notified, and paramedics are able to save him.
  • January 27: President Rockefeller's heart attack makes every headline in the United States. Rockeller himself makes a televised address to the nation, stating that doctors have put him on bed rest for a week; during that time, Charles H. Percy is sworn in as Acting President.
  • September: Ronald Reagan, popular former California Governor and Hollywood actor, announces that, after long consideration, he will not run for the presidency.
  • September: Only weeks after Reagan declines a presidential run, former civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. launches a much anticipated Democratic presidential campaign.


  • November 4: In a tight race, Martin Luther King, Jr. and his running mate Walter Mondale defeat the Republican ticket of Gerald Ford and his running mate Richard Schweiker.


  • January 5: Two weeks before the inauguration of a new Democratic president, Tip O'Neill becomes Speaker of the House.
  • January 20: In one of the United States' most historic moments, Martin Luther King, Jr. is sworn in as the first African American president.
  • September 1: Former President Henry M. Jackson dies.


  • November 6: The King/Mondale ticket receive a comfortable win over the Republican ticket of Howard Baker and Donald Rumsfeld.


  • April 13: President King is shot. He is rushed to a hospital, but is pronounced dead on arrival. Shortly thereafter, Walter Mondale is sworn in as the 39th President of the United States. By midnight of the same day, the young man who is believed to have committed the murder is found with a self-inflicted bullet in his head; years later, his intentions for the assassination are still unclear.
  • April 14: All events and daily activities are put on hold as the nation mourns a historical president. Later in the night, President Mondale makes a televised address, acknowledging the shoes he must fill and sending a message of unity to all Americans.
  • April 17: The state funeral of Martin Luther King, Jr. is held. Speakers at the funeral include President Mondale, Former Presidents Kennedy and Rockefeller, and Burlington Mayor Bernie Sanders who marched with King in Washington.
  • April 21: President Mondale announces he has chosen Senator Gary Hart of Colorado as his vice president.


  • November 8: In an election that many Republicans decided not to take part in, Mondale/Hart win in a landslide (albeit, not one as big as 1964) over Bob Dole and Arlen Specter.


  • January 3: Edward Rell Madigan becomes Speaker of the House.
  • January 20: Mondale is sworn in again. Much of King's cabinet, who stayed on after Mondale's ascension, leave; replacements include Jimmy Carter as Secretary of Agriculture, Michael Dukakis as Attorney General, and Shirley Chisholm promoted from Attorney General to Secretary of State.


  • November 3: The 1992 Presidential Election. Even though Gary Hart and his running mate George Mitchell receive the majority of the popular vote, the Republican ticket of George H.W. Bush and Jack Kemp win through the Electoral College.
  • November 4: Despite Hart conceding the election, protests are rampant throughout Republican-won states.
  • November 5: Hart makes a public statement towards protestors, saying that Bush won the election fairly and to stay united.


  • January 20: George H.W. Bush is sworn in as the 40th President of the United States; Jack Kemp is sworn in as the 42nd Vice President of the United States. Among Bush's cabinet is former presidential candidate Bob Dole as Secretary of Defense.
  • April: A middle-aged woman attempts to shoot President Bush, but each bullet misses. She is apprehended and eventually given a life sentence. When asked why, she confirmed that Bush's Electoral College win was the reason.


  • January 4: Richard Gephardt becomes Speaker of the House.
  • Despite most polls showing she would win, Texas Governor Ann Richards announces she will not run for president.


  • February: Former President Nelson Rockefeller dies.
  • November 5: Winning both the popular vote and the majority of Electoral votes, Bush/Kemp wins over the Democratic ticket of Bob Kerrey and Bill Bradley.


  • November 3: President Bush's son John Ellis ("Jeb") wins the Florida gubernatorial election.


  • March 7: After a poor finish on Super Tuesday, Gary Condit withdraws his presidential campaign.
  • March 9: After a poor finish in the South Carolina caucus, having only won his home state of California, Jerry Brown withdraws his presidential campaign.
  • May 2: Following his loss in the Indiana primary, Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton withdraws his presidential campaign, leaving front-runner Al Gore - Tennessee Senator and environmental activist - the presumptive nominee.
  • July 5: In a move that has been criticized years later, Republican nominee John McCain announces his friend and fellow southerner Lindsey Graham as his running mate.
  • November 7: Al Gore and his running mate Barbara Boxer of California win a tight race against McCain/Graham. In a showing of respect and unity, Gore would later select McCain as his Ambassador to the United Nations.


  • January 20: Al Gore is sworn in as the 41st President of the United States. In another historic moment, Barbara Boxer is sworn in as the first female vice president. Members of Gore's cabinet include John Kerry as Secretary of State, Wesley Clark as Secretary of Defense, Joe Biden as Attorney General, and Paul Wellstone as Secretary of Education.


  • January 7: Tom DeLay becomes Speaker of the House.
  • June: Days after his 86th birthday, Former President John F. Kennedy dies.


  • November 2: Gore/Boxer are reelected over the Republican ticket of Tom Ridge and Lamar Alexander.


  • March: Jeb Bush launches his presidential campaign. Many wonder whether or not his brother, Texas Representative George W. Bush, would launch his own campaign as well until he formally denies it.
  • April: Colin Powell, a Four-Star Army General and political figure, announces his Republican bid for the 2008 Presidential election. While he is a well-respected figure, many believe his campaign to be a long shot.
  • May 4: Following the first Republican presidential debate, Jeb Bush continues his status as front-runner.
  • October 26: Following the October 25 Republican debate, Colin Powell - who had been inching his way up in polls - overtakes Jeb Bush as the Republican front-runner.


  • March 4: After finishing last in the four Democratic Primaries, Richard Gephardt withdraws his presidential campaign.
  • April 22: Following his last place finish in the Pennsylvania primary, John Edwards withdraws his campaign, leaving Hilary Clinton (New York Senator and former First Lady of Arkansas) and Howard Dean (Vermont Governor) the last Democratic candidates.
  • May 6: After losing both Indiana and North Carolina, Jeb Bush suspends his campaign; this leaves Colin Powell the presumptive nominee.
  • June 7: With the math against him, Howard Dean concedes the Democratic Primary to Hillary Clinton.
  • August 23: Hillary Clinton announces that she has chosen Dick Gephardt as her running mate.
  • August 29: Colin Powell announces Lincoln Chafee, Governor of Rhode Island, as his running mate.
  • November 4: In a tight race, the Powell/Chafee ticket defeats the Clinton/Gephardt ticket.


  • January 6: Nancy Pelosi becomes the first woman to serve as Speaker of the House.
  • January 20: Colin Powell is sworn in as the 42nd President of the United States, the second African American to be elected into office.


  • November 6: Powell/Chafee are reelected by a huge margin over the Democratic ticket of John Edwards and Bill Richardson.


  • January 6: John Lewis becomes the first African American to serve as Speaker of the House.

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