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Poll of the Almost-Presidents


Zenobiyl
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Poll of the Almost-Presidents  

13 members have voted

  1. 1. Select all of the candidates who you believe would have made good presidents. This poll doesn’t take into account the specific circumstances of each candidate’s win, just whether they would have been equipped to lead during their lifetime. Any candidate who became president isn’t included. Third parties who performed well (over 5%) are included. Some people who came close to the presidency through primary or circumstantially are also included. You can select multiple candidates. The top 10 finishers will be sent to a second poll.

    • Aaron Burr
    • Charles Pinckney
    • DeWitt Clinton
    • William H Crawford
    • Rufus King
    • Henry Clay
    • Lewis Cass
      0
    • John C. Breckinridge
      0
    • John C. Fremont
    • John Bell
    • Stephen Douglas
    • Hannibal Hamlin
    • George McClellan
    • Horatio Seymour
    • Horace Greeley
    • Samuel J Tilden
    • Winfield Scott Hancock
      0
    • James Blaine
    • James B Weaver
    • William Jennings Bryan
    • Garrett Hobart
    • Alton B Parker
    • Eugene V Debs
    • Charles Evans Hughes
    • James M Cox
    • John W. Davis
    • Robert M. LaFollete
    • Al Smith
    • Alf Landon
    • Wendell Willkie
    • Thomas E Dewey
    • Henry Wallace
    • Strom Thurmond
      0
    • Adlai Stevenson
    • Estes Kefauver
    • Barry Goldwater
    • George Wallace
      0
    • Spiro Agnew
    • George McGovern
    • John B Anderson
    • Walter Mondale
    • Michael Dukakis
    • Ross Perot
    • Bob Dole
    • Al Gore
    • John Kerry
    • John McCain
    • Mitt Romney
    • Bernie Sanders

This poll is closed to new votes

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  • Poll closed on 05/12/2021 at 05:00 PM

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Let me clarity my answers:

  1. This list does not mean I would have voted for or against this president. For instance, many of the politicians I ideologically support are not checked because they lacked the personality and/or experience to effectively work with Senators, US Reps, Governors, etc. For instance, Debs would have been pretty much an impotent president. 
  2. I checked those that I thought would not be below average or worse presidents. I think John McCain would be a nightmare in regards to his use of the military, but I think he would have been relatively bipartisan and effective elsewhere. Same with Romney. 

The possible presidents likely to have been failures (i.e. worse than below average) are:

Ross Perot, George Wallace, Barry Goldwater, Strom Thurmond, Horace Greeley, George B McClellan, and John C Fremont. They, with the exception of Goldwater, lacked the personality for the job. Goldwater would have failed because he would have exacerbated a lot of issues that were already going badly. 1980s Goldwater would have probably been a decent president, ideology aside. Goldwater was the wrong nominee for 1964. History makes that clear. 

A note on Aaron Burr. He had all the traits of a modern president. Many of his faults would be overlooked today. He likely would still be corrupt, but there's something dynamic about him that would probably make him effective. 

I think DeWitt Clinton, Henry Clay, and Robert La Follette are probably the greatest never presidents in regards to potential. All three were potential FDRs. John Quincy Adams was also a potential FDR, but Congress completely opposed him and JQ Adams lacked the personality to deal with Congress and Governors. La Follette has the highest chance of boom or bust -- He was both a governor and longtime Senator. Clinton served as mayor, governor, and senator, but his legislative experience was limited. Nevertheless, he was probably the safest bet. Henry Clay, unlike the others, had administrative experience and had served in both houses of congress. He would likely have more voter support just because he's Henry Clay -- the other two were more regional. 

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1 hour ago, pilight said:

I am endlessly amused that you included Bernie Sanders but not Hillary Clinton

Somehow, I didn't notice that he did that. I think she would have been an alright president. Not as bad as Trump and probably about as good as Biden. 

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33 minutes ago, DakotaHale said:

Also missed Clay and Hamlin going through.

Surprised @vcczar doesn't appear to be a fan of Debs and William Jennings Bryan

I’m a fan of them. I just don’t they’d be good presidents. They haven’t the right temperament to be successful in that role. 

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10 hours ago, Patine said:

Long ago, back on 270soft before almost all of you first signed in (@MrPotatoTed may have been "lurking," but not posting judging by this sign-up date) a poster with a bizarrely spelled handle-name and a purple hand with a green spiral on the palm for an avatar image who hasn't been around for years made a scenario for P4E2008 where you could pit everyone who ever elected, or become from having succeeded as a VP, U.S. President with five Party Primaries (Democratic, Republican, Democratic-Republican, Whig, and Federalist) and the issues, issue stances, and region centres were, "temporally genericized." With his permission, I took the base chasis of the scenario but did those who formally ran in a GE, lost, but had, "respectable," results, and, by necessity, increased the number of parties to the P4E2008 game limit of 16. Many of these candidates (though certainly not all) were in that scenario.

I joined in 2007, I believe.  But didn't become a particularly active vistor/contributor until something like 2018/2019.

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On 5/11/2021 at 2:16 PM, pilight said:

I am endlessly amused that you included Bernie Sanders but not Hillary Clinton

Shit, I must’ve messed up. I thought I had Clinton at #50, but maybe she got cut off by the choice limit.

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