The governor of District 13, Celine Oswald, is arguably Panem’s most powerful governor. Now, she is the first to challenge President Cecelia Paylor in the upcoming presidential election.
Governor Oswald, as governor of District 13, is in charge of one of the most important districts, as District 13 is the location of Panem’s main nuclear stockpile as well as graphite mines. District 13 also has played a historical role in Panem, as it was the center of Panem’s rebellion against President Snow. Most notably, the first President of the Republic of Panem is generally considered by scholars to be Alma Coin, who served as President of District 13 until Snow was overthrown. President Coin was assassinated by Katniss Everdeen in a surprise move during what was expected to be a public execution of Snow.
Oswald spoke with to a crowd in District 13 when announcing her campaign.
It is with deep regret that I say that there is no possible way that I could compromise with President Paylor. She simply has not had the success that we wished her administration to have, and as a result Panem has become entangled in problems. Meanwhile, more and more officials have become opponents of the President, and one key thing stands out to me- every single district in Panem has a government that is performing exceptionally well. District 13 is a success story in itself! This district was left in chaos after the rebellion, and I can account for that. Fortunately, the officials that have been elected can govern effectively and efficiently. Our economy is better than any other district, our infrastructure is clearly better than any other in Panem, and our district government is absolutely transparent. Since I’ve took office along with my colleagues, District 13 has prospered in innumerable ways. It is on that success that I state that I plan to bring that success to the rest of Panem. It’s time for a change in leadership at the national level, and I intend to lead Panem as the President of the Republic of Panem.
Oswald is a surprise entry to the race to become the next President, but not a longshot- she is extremely well-liked throughout Panem and especially in District 13. However, her popularity could easily dwindle as other candidates enter the race, which may include Effie Trinket, Plutarch Heavensbee, and Katniss Everdeen, who would be immensely popular.
Oswald also brings to the table a factor that no other potential candidate has: governing experience.
Secretaries Trinket and Heavensbee, while formerly powerful officials in the Paylor cabinet, would lack any experience heading a government, as would Katniss Everdeen, who has not ever held elective office. And while Speaker of the Panem House of Representatives Jonathan Madison has headed up the House, the position lacks the power or authority of a governorship. Many scholars, seeing this, have begun to put their support behind Oswald.
However, the race has only just begun, and it’s anyone’s guess how it could turn out. For now, it seems the field is all open, and Paylor’s presidency is threatened.