Republican Primary EditThe incumbent President Donald Trump's first term was riddled with scandal, controversy and failure. This led to him being the first seriously primared Incumbent since Jimmy Carter. On March 17th, 2019, 2016 Presidential candidate Evan McMullin announced that he would primary Donald Trump. He almost immediately picked up the endorsements of Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, and Thomas Massie, and looked poised to win a good portion of the west. On June 8th, 2019, former Ohio Governor John Kasich announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination. Donald Trump appeared to only be winning in the south until Evan McMullin made a major gaffe. When asked about the Federal Reserve, McMullin said "It's a crazy thing. Theodore Roosevelt implemented it to stabilize the economy, but since its' implementation there have been more economic recessions than there were before." Many media outlets pointed out that it was actually Woodrow Wilson that implemented the Federal Reserve and that the statement itself was false. In the month following the statement, McMullin declined from 24% to 8% in primary polls and was forced to drop out. During McMullin's decline, Kasich ascended from 29% to 43%, taking almost all of McMullin's supporters. Donald Trump won the Iowa Caucases by a margin of 54-46, but Kasich surprised the world when he won New Hampshire in a landslide a week later. Donald Trump inevitably won the nomination, but it was the first time a President had been primaried with this much success since the 1976 Democratic Primaries.
The convention was relatively peaceful. John Kasich conceded to Trump at the convention and announced that he would be running instead for the US House of Representatives. John Kasich would go on to win the Congressional seat with 82% of the popular vote. On the second day of the convention, Marco Rubio gave a speech that fired up the entire audience. Unlike he was during the 2016 primaries, Rubio had a lot of energy and didn't seem robotic. This brought him back into the national spotlight and led to media suspecting that he was planning to run for the Presidency in 2020. Donald Trump's acceptance speech also was well-received, with a call to unify the country and the announcement that Ted Cruz would be replacing the Supreme Court vacancy of Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Democratic Primary EditAfter the 2016 loss of Hillary Clinton, Democrats were looking for a new direction to take. On May 19th, 2019, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio announced his candidacy for the Democratic nomination. On May 28th, former Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe announced; on June 2nd, former Montana Governor Steve Bullock announced; on June 12th, former Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley announced; on June 14th, former HUD Secretary Julian Castro announced; and on June 30th, former Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee announced. The start was chaotic, with McAuliffe slightly leading. The first debate was won by Bill de Blasio, and after the debate, Lincoln Chafee was once again forced to drop out. In later debates, Martin O'Malley and Terry McAuliffe became regular winners. The Iowa Primary saw Steve Bullock win in a surprise comeback. Julian Castro dropped out after Iowa, stating that it "wasn't my time yet."
Martin O'Malley was the only candidate with no real regional base, but that actually helped him win. Steve Bullock was strong in the west but had little support elsewhere, Terry McAuliffe was strong in the south but had little support elsewhere, and Bill de Blasio was strong in deeply blue states but weak elsewhere. This allowed Martin O'Malley to win virtually the entire rust belt, the border states, and the west coast. The closest race was in Arkansas, where Martin O'Malley beat Terry McAuliffe by only 231 votes. The convention was relatively unexciting, and Martin O'Malley failed to generate the usual "convention bounce" that candidates for President see. There was also nobody who stood out at the convention, leading many to speculate on the future of the Democratic Party. Martin O'Malley announced that his primary opponent Julian Castro would be his running mate, leading to minor excitement from progressives.
Libertarian Primary EditFollowing the failure of Gary Johnson, many Libertarians left the party to join the two parties. This was reversed, however, when Austin Petersen became the first Libertarian elected to the US Senate in 2018. Only two major candidates ran for the Libertarian nomination, and Austin Petersen won by a wide margin because the party had been so opposed to Gary Johnson that they refused to pick his running mate as the nominee. After losing the Presidential nomination, Bill Weld endorsed Wayne Allyn Root for the Vice Presidential nomination. Petersen spoke after Weld, having what was possibly the shortest acceptance speech for a party's nomination. The entire speech lasted under thirty seconds, and Austin only said "Normally, I would encourage you all to nominate Larry Sharpe as my running mate, but Bill Weld just did." Larry Sharpe won the Vice Presidential nomination by an even wider margin than Petersen had won the nomination.
General Election Edit
Donald Trump started with a narrow lead that widened after the Republican convention. Because the FEC had forced the CPD to change its' rules for the Presidential debates from 15% in five polls to 5% in five polls. This allowed Austin Petersen, who was regularly polling at 7%, to be in the debates. Pundits said Austin won all three debates, and he shot up to 12% in the polls. Besides the debates, the election was generally unexciting. The final poll showed Trump at 39%, O'Malley at 35%, Petersen at 15%, and Green Party nominee Ajamu Baraka at 6%.
Unsurprisingly, Donald Trump was re-elected. The closest state was Missouri, where Austin Petersen lost to Trump by 6,738 votes.
Much like in 2016, there was a movement for faithless electors to elect someone else, this time Austin Petersen. A week before the electoral college was to meet, Austin Petersen asked that faithless electors not vote for him. There were seven faithless electors, three of which voted for Austin.