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Are you a bad enough dude to be the President?
February 23, 2014 8:06 AM   Subscribe

The Campaign Trail - Can you win the US presidential elections of 2012, 1968, and 1896?
posted by rollick (53 comments total) 19 users marked this as a favorite

 
Sorry! You have lost the 2012 election. In spite of your spirited defense, Mitt Romney has won the Presidency

Ouch. So much for liberalism.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 8:17 AM on February 23


I ran as Romney on a platform of not being a total dick, and won by a landslide. Huh.
posted by phunniemee at 8:22 AM on February 23


I ran as Obama making every choice as similar to the campaign as I remember it except with Clinton as VP, and Romney won.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 8:29 AM on February 23 [2 favorites]


Man, trying to Bryan and pro-Labor and anti-Racism is no way to become President, I guess.
posted by GenjiandProust at 8:34 AM on February 23


Ran as HHH in 1968 and creamed Nixon in the Electoral College by being an actual liberal, just not quite so pro-union, picking Ted Kennedy as VP, repudiating the Vietnam War and outing Nixon for sabotaging peace negotiations. And campaigning in Missouri and Texas, apparently. Even won California.

You're welcome, America.
posted by dry white toast at 8:35 AM on February 23 [13 favorites]


Romney/Rubio FTW!

Mitt Romney EV:285 Popular vote: 65,634,703 Percentage: 50.31%
Barack Obama EV:253 Popular vote: 62,645,761 Percentage: 48.02%

I evidently didn't have to be nearly as much of a dick, either. I took the high road of hope and pragmatism and let my supporters attack Obama. Meanwhile, Rubio appealed to my base and helped me pick up AZ, CO and NV. Two speeches in OH and FL helped me carry those, and Bob's you're uncle!

***shudders at how this might have actually worked, and what it would be like now with Mittens/Teabagger in the WH***
posted by darkstar at 8:36 AM on February 23


The game apparently has no metric for a candidate using the phrase "binder full of women."
posted by dry white toast at 8:46 AM on February 23 [2 favorites]


I ran as Obama making every choice as similar to the campaign as I remember it except with Clinton as VP, and Romney won.

I did this and won by a landslide. Must have to do with the cities and states you visit, I suppose.
posted by Navelgazer at 8:53 AM on February 23 [1 favorite]


Man, trying to Bryan and pro-Labor and anti-Racism is no way to become President, I guess.

Compromising on everything but silver didn't win it either.
posted by tyllwin at 9:03 AM on February 23 [1 favorite]


As Bryan, appealing as a moderate to the NE got me close. So close.
posted by oddman at 9:06 AM on February 23 [1 favorite]


I played as, basically, a somewhat more liberal version of Obama. I won the popular vote but lost the electoral. Damn electoral college, screws us again.
posted by breakin' the law at 9:10 AM on February 23


its slow and buggy for me?
posted by PinkMoose at 9:11 AM on February 23


its slow and buggy for me?

Same here. I wanted to try '68 but I'd guess I'll have to wait until later.
posted by breakin' the law at 9:11 AM on February 23


Sorry kids, I think I broke it. I played Wallace-Thurmond as a moderate campaign that accepted the need for desegregation.
posted by Thing at 9:15 AM on February 23 [3 favorites]


Played Humphrey/Kennedy, played hard liberal but I think I campaigned in the South too hard and took the Northeast for granted. Wallace did too well, we split the electoral college and overall I'm just really disappointed in my political acumen.
posted by penduluum at 9:41 AM on February 23 [1 favorite]


5234 games have been played with William McKinley
Your ranking this game is #4778
You have outplayed 8.7% of your contemporaries


I am very bad at this game.
posted by Copronymus at 9:53 AM on February 23 [2 favorites]


This was a blast. Well done on the political history, and something I'd probably keep playing all day but for the occasional site hiccups.
posted by bearwife at 9:59 AM on February 23


I ran as Obama/Clinton and choose the liberal agenda I actually, personally believe in. Won the popular vote but lost the electoral college. See you at Kerry's backyard BBQ, breakin' the law.
posted by weeyin at 10:12 AM on February 23


I ran as Obama/Biden and made choices like weeyin but the buggy damn thing won't display my results.

I choose to believe I won.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:19 AM on February 23 [1 favorite]


I won (by a hair) as Obama with Clinton for a mate, playing mostly by the heart, with tons of time spent in the Midwest.
posted by cotton dress sock at 10:57 AM on February 23


If you are Bryan, DO NOT go make a speech in New York City, the newspapers get really upset about all the poor people marching in the streets in support of you. It was so bad that I lost Bryan-leaning Illinois with Adlai Stevenson as my running mate!
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 11:11 AM on February 23


I'm in the middle of the 80 question version playing as Obama-Biden, and I just got to this question: Be perfectly honest. How do you like Mitt Romney as a person?

There are only two answer choices given, which are:

A. I wish Mitt all the best in life as soon as he loses this election. He seems like a great guy once you get away from all of this politicking.

AND

B. Mitt Romney is a great American success story. His efforts over the years have been admirable. I just don't think he has the best policies in mind for America.

If they want me to be perfectly honest, I'm going to need more options.
posted by Jonathan Livengood at 11:14 AM on February 23 [4 favorites]


"Shit, William Jennings Bryan, I didn't know you liked to get wet."
posted by Sphinx at 11:23 AM on February 23


Played Humphrey/Kennedy, played hard liberal but I think I campaigned in the South too hard and took the Northeast for granted. Wallace did too well, we split the electoral college and overall I'm just really disappointed in my political acumen.

I abandoned the south to Wallace and focused on Texas, the midwest, and the northeast. Worked like a charm.
posted by dry white toast at 11:36 AM on February 23


I ran Obama + Biden in the 2012 and exactly duplicated the 332-206 electoral college result (including the actual state-by-state map). I mean, I remember Obama's positions for the most part, but I couldn't have correctly recalled speech locations (not that much of a politics nerd)... the dude really is my president, apparently.
posted by axiom at 11:43 AM on February 23


5236 games have been played with William McKinley
Your ranking this game is #46
You have outplayed 99.1% of your contemporaries


I have no idea what I just did.
posted by knapah at 11:47 AM on February 23 [3 favorites]


I think I killed the site though, it's throwing a 500 error now.
posted by knapah at 11:48 AM on February 23


The game must be broken is spouting unreasonable ideas doesn't win you the election. Can't get Bryan win even if he doubles down on the crazy, unlike in a real election. Free minting of silver and no tariffs!
posted by fiercekitten at 12:02 PM on February 23


This is a fantastic idea. Wish this had been around when I was taking US history in high school.
posted by town of cats at 12:13 PM on February 23


According to the little chart at the end, George Wallace has been played as a candidate 8543 times, and he has won exactly zero elections. This feels like a challenge, but not one I'd want to take up.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 12:26 PM on February 23 [1 favorite]


According to the little chart at the end, George Wallace has been played as a candidate 8543 times, and he has won exactly zero elections. This feels like a challenge, but not one I'd want to take up.

I suspect it's not possible, the 'best' outcome is deadlocking the electoral college.
posted by knapah at 12:34 PM on February 23


I ran with Nixon/Reagon on the Raving Psycho Loony ticket. I basically recommended that we bomb everybody, including ourselves. Great fun.

Humphrey won with 456 electoral votes. Nixon/Reagon only got the mountain west plus Kansas and Nebraska. Which, frankly kind of scary that the nine states apparently still would have voted Nixon if he had started foaming at the mouth and biting people.
posted by kyrademon at 12:38 PM on February 23 [6 favorites]


I played a few times and hit some sql errors, but for the games that worked, great times! Think I'll come back in the middle of the night.
posted by Roger Dodger at 12:39 PM on February 23


I ran as Humphrey/Harris with the goal of keeping the moderate and liberal wings of the Democratic Party together, while remaining antiwar and pro-civil rights. That was enough to pick up Ohio and Texas, yet it somehow drove more support to Wallace in the south. In the end the Electoral College was deadlocked.
posted by Cash4Lead at 12:48 PM on February 23


I just deadlocked the Electoral College with Humphrey/Connally, winning more support than anyone else, but with Wallace screwing me in the house by refusing to support a desegregationist like me.

Dammit.
posted by Navelgazer at 1:11 PM on February 23


First polling update as Obama '12 had New York as a toss-up. What?
posted by aaronetc at 2:01 PM on February 23


If you are Bryan, DO NOT go make a speech in New York City

Really? I made a one big speech there and it damn near flipped the state to me. I didn't win it, but still, a 295 (53.7%) to 152 (45.85%) win by Bryan IN YOUR FACE. Suck it, robber baron industrialites!

The trick was to focus on the Upper Midwest and not be quite so firebrand-y as Bryan actually was.
posted by Panjandrum at 2:22 PM on February 23


its slow and buggy for me?

You mean the reception and rooms at the Watergate? I haven't gotten to that level yet.
posted by eddydamascene at 2:31 PM on February 23 [1 favorite]


I just deadlocked the Electoral College playing a more moderate Romney and putting all my energy into Ohio and Florida.

"Fortunately for you, the majority of U.S. states have Republican controlled congressional delegations, and they will cast their votes for you accordingly."

Woo Romney! Woo...ooo.
posted by Beardman at 4:17 PM on February 23


Crap. I had a 64 electoral vote lead, and then I died of dysentery.
posted by Anoplura at 4:19 PM on February 23 [5 favorites]


I ran as Obama/Biden with the same basic deal as the real 2012, skewed more liberal on red meat domestic issues (healthcare, gay marriage, racial profiling), and won by a fucking landslide.

This proves conclusively that I am always right, forever, about everything.
posted by Sara C. at 4:30 PM on February 23 [11 favorites]


I thought voters would appreciate the honesty of just saying that I absolutely intended to crucify each and every one of them on a cross of gold. I was wrong.
posted by Luminiferous Ether at 4:37 PM on February 23 [1 favorite]


8755 games have been played with William Jennings Bryan
Your ranking this game is #2204
You have outplayed 74.8% of your contemporaries


Finally. I can be satisfied with that.
posted by Navelgazer at 4:41 PM on February 23


I just tried to play McKinley as a Progressive Republican, figuring I could get a big national win by mixing some pro-labor stuff (collective bargaining, disability insurance) with support for things business liked (tariffs, the gold standard, railroad subsidies) and hammering Bryan on being a religious fundie radical who wants to ban alcohol.

It failed miserably. I got 39 electoral votes, all in New England.
posted by breakin' the law at 4:54 PM on February 23


Yeah, I think it's easier to move Bryan a little right (in terms of the spectrum in 1896) than it is to move McKinley left. Basically abandon the prohibition issue, allow for silver to be reevaluated to prevent a run on the Treasury, bang the drum for both labor and farmers when the opportunities arise, call for low tariffs but allow for some protectionism in developing industries. Give the big speech in New York for the national attention, but only if it comes early enough to make a lasting difference - don't waste time with it later. Don't bother with the Upper South, it'll be hard enough to control the midwest. If you do the pacific sweep you should lock those down, which helps.

Finally, and most sadly, I couldn't find a way to win with Bryan by sticking to your guns about racism. Being a firebrand to Gov. Tillman will almost certainly lose you the election, far as I can tell.
posted by Navelgazer at 5:22 PM on February 23


Is the horrible website (slow, buggy, uncooperative, unwieldy) supposed to be a metaphor for our electoral system?
posted by schroedingersgirl at 5:22 PM on February 23 [2 favorites]


Crap. I had a 64 electoral vote lead, and then I died of dysentery.

My wagon wheel broke on the way to Palm Beach County.
posted by Beardman at 6:13 PM on February 23 [2 favorites]


"Service Unavailable.
Server currently undergoing maintenance."


Seems a pretty fair comment, given the subject matter.
posted by IndigoJones at 6:48 PM on February 23 [2 favorites]


"Service Unavailable.
Server currently undergoing maintenance."


Yeah, for me too.

On the other hand, just yesterday I won the 1960 election against Nixon, so I am feeling okay.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 6:56 PM on February 23


Dang... too late for the fun. It's broken now.
posted by Benway at 8:13 PM on February 23 [1 favorite]


I played as George W. Bush's grandfather and kicked FDR out in a facist coup!
posted by vorpal bunny at 9:30 PM on February 23


"Deadlocking the electoral college" sounds like something that should be on UrbanDictionary.com
posted by blue_beetle at 4:15 AM on February 24 [1 favorite]


I played as Romney's web team and got 503 service unavailable.
posted by jaduncan at 3:24 PM on February 24 [3 favorites]


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