Category Archives: Debates

EXCLUSIVE: Presidential hopeful Kaitlyn Jones sits down for interview with Polaris Septrix

Following a major dispute featuring two of the Conservative Party’s most prominent leaders, the debate for the Conservative Party’s presidential candidates was cancelled on Saturday. Today Polaris Septrix sits down with former governor and Conservative presidential hopeful Kaitlyn Jones in an exclusive one-on-one interview with The Panem Free Press.

PS: Let’s get started, shall we? Governor, you were the last remaining Conservative governor in the nation following Governor Xavier Hansen’s abandonment of the Conservative label. How does your time as governor contribute to your ability to potentially serve as Panem’s next president?

KJ: Thank you for having me today. My time as governor was no walk in the park, as many will easily tell you. However, what my critics won’t tell you is that we got a lot done in District 11 under my tenure. Our legislature was a Conservative majority, but we regularly worked with Liberty and Civic members in order to get what our citizens wanted passed and on my desk. We passed tax reform, welfare reform, environmental reform, you name it. In four years, we passed some of the most meaningful legislation in the District’s history. It goes to show that I have ability to govern and to work with people to get to the goal of a better nation.

PS: However, you only got a single term.

KJ: That’s true, unfortunately. The recession hit during my tenure. While we worked as best we could under that pressure, there’s only so much a district government can do to alleviate the issues that come from the Capitol.

PS: So you are blaming your loss on the recession and on President Canth?

KJ: I do think that the recession was a key factor, since many families were hurting and many remembered that the economy wasn’t bad under Liberty Party rule. I think it’s a big factor as to why we have President Mellark right now instead of President Canth. And look, Rick is a nice guy, but I don’t agree with him on many things. I think he lost sight of his values when he got into the White House. You started to see things like higher taxes and poorer decisions, which put us in a bit of a bind. It definitely didn’t make my life any easier.

PS: Well, he’s certainly not far from many people’s minds when they think of the Conservative Party. How do you plan to revitalize the party and its image following Rick Canth’s impeachment?

KJ: I think that Panem currently associates the Conservatives with corruption and with flip flopping. I mentioned previously about President Canth heading the opposite direction with taxation, and people see that and say, “How is this any different than Liberty politicians, or Labor politicians, or Civic politicians, or Centre politicians?” It looks terrible on us when we campaign on a promise and deliver another party’s platform plank. It certainly hurts us deeply as a party when our leaders engage in corruption as well. President Canth isn’t the only one either, it’s Robert F. Maxwell as well. Voters remember his email scandals, and that’s what they remember about Conservatives. They associate our party with everything that our previous leaders have done wrong. That’s why I am running. We need a fresh start, and we can’t have someone who is the image of corruption or even remotely associated with corruption in the case of Secretary Pierce in charge.

PS: Which brings me to my next question: What is your opinion of what happened on Saturday?

KJ: To put it bluntly, I think that Secretary Pierce is right in one way: Mr. Maxwell is simply trying to remain in the lead like the rest of us, and he knows that he can’t be in the lead if the Conservative voters see who he really is. He can’t answer the tough questions and so he sticks to his campaign rallies where he gets to mandate what is discussed. However, the same can be said about Secretary Pierce. I was fully ready to take on Secretary Pierce with Mr. Maxwell in attendance, with an empty podium in place of Mr. Maxwell, or even in just a one-on-one debate. However, Secretary Pierce avoided the fight, just like Mr. Maxwell. It goes to show that there is a real choice in our primary this election season. You can choose Secretary Pierce, who is effectively who President Canth would have wanted to win. You can choose Mr. Maxwell, who is just as corrupt as President Canth was, despite the fact that he says that he wants to change the face of the party. And last and I hope not least, you can choose Governor Kaitlyn Jones, who is none of the above. If you want a real revamp of our party, you can join me and my campaign in fighting for the true Conservative platform, in fighting against corruption regardless if it’s from a Liberty, Labor, Civic, Centre, or Conservative politician, and in fighting for a greater freedom for Panem.

PS: Well, there you have it. Rising star Kaitlyn Jones, former governor of District 11 and potential Conservative nominee for President of the Republic of Panem. Thank you for joining us tonight.

BREAKING: Spat between Maxwell and Pierce forces Conservative debate cancellation

BREAKING: The Conservative Party presidential debate, which was planned to air this Thursday and to be hosted by The Panem Free Press, has been called off with no intent of rescheduling according to sources within the Conservative Party and within the campaigns of the three main candidates.

The debate, which would have featured businessman Robert F. Maxwell, former Secretary Kurtis Pierce, and former Governor Kaitlyn Jones, was cancelled following a row between Maxwell and Pierce. Maxwell alleged that he was being treated unfairly by the debate staff and by the Pierce campaign and declared that he would have no part in a Conservative debate under the conditions that were set forth. When debate staff refused to leave an empty podium in place of Maxwell’s position onstage, Pierce also declined to participate.

The Maxwell campaign only had this to say about the spat:

“Mr. Maxwell will not participate in any debate that does not give him a fair shot of delivering his message to the voters. Instead, Mr. Maxwell will be rallying in District 2 with his supporters and raising money that will be donated to charities that donate to causes that help our nation’s veterans.”

Conversely, the Pierce campaign responded to the story as well, taking a different approach:

“Robert F. Maxwell showed his true colors today, running away from a fight he was destined to lose. However, as long as The Panem Free Press avoids allowing voters to see that Mr. Maxwell isn’t prepared to show up for the job that he is running for, Secretary Pierce will not participate in what Mr. Maxwell describes as an ‘unfair’ debate.”

While the Jones campaign declined to comment when contacted, Governor Jones will participate in a one-on-one interview with former Press Secretary Polaris Septrix here on The Panem Free Press in the place of the Conservative debate.

Civic debate sets record for primary debate viewership

Sen. Patrick Newsom (left) and former Sec. Samuel Trenton enter the stage for the first Civic presidential debate.

The Civic Party held their first presidential debate, and it broke barriers in the political world.

The Civic Party, for one, has never held a debate before nor has it had a contested primary up to this point. The previous nominee each election was former President Cecelia Paylor, who founded the party. She stepped aside this year after multiple failed attempts to regain the office she once held. This year, her VP nominee, Samuel Trenton, faces off against firebrand Sen. Patrick Newsom for the nomination. Trenton brings experience to the table, while Newsom has gained a cult following with the base of the party.

The party’s debate last night set a record for viewership, reaching over thirty million viewers across Panem’s media. This is the highest viewership for a primary debate of any party in Panem’s electoral history, with the previous record holder being the first Liberty presidential debate during the last cycle. This record shows an unprecedented amount of enthusiasm for the Civic primary, despite historically abysmal polling.

Candidates were allowed two minutes per response plus an additional minute of rebuttal time under the condition that their name was mentioned by another candidate. Below are highlights of the debate:


ON THE ECONOMY:

Question: While the economy has improved since the beginning of the Mellark administration, both of you have criticized the economic policies used to encourage financial growth. Explain why, and explain what changes your potential administration would implement.

Trenton: “It’s simple: President Mellark has left behind any normal citizen of Panem. Sure, the economy is better for our big corporations, but go ask any Panem citizen if their wallet feels any bigger. My plan would ensure that corporations are held accountable for the monstrosity of a recession that occurred and further propel growth for our middle and lower class citizens. Everyone needs a break.”

Newsom: “As was previously said, we’ve left our citizens behind. The President campaigned in the last election on dropping the corporate tax rate. Why? Because ninety percent of his campaign donations come from big business, who would benefit from such a decrease. He did cut taxes, but the effects of those cuts have been minimal for any citizen who doesn’t make millions of dollars. We need to raise our corporate tax once again, ensure through extensive regulation that Panem corporations cannot allow for such a disaster such as this past recession to occur, and we need to implement a tax system that actually makes sure our richer citizens pay their fair share.”


ON FOREIGN POLICY:

Question: President Mellark has faced increasing controversy over his decision to seek boots on the ground in the region of Greece following threats of nuclear proliferation. What would you do as president to counter the new nuclear threat and to deal with the Greek conflict?

Newsom: “I’ll answer this very quickly. Number one: to counter the nuclear threat, I think that we should counter it with a broad coalition of nations and with the goal of completely denuclearizing this planet. That means every nation with weapons, including us, should rid themselves of nuclear weapons. Number two, the Greek conflict is not ours to fight. We should not intervene in a foreign nation’s affairs.”

Trenton: “This is where I disagree with my opponent. We should not dismantle our nuclear stockpile. There’s no incentive to do so. In fact, we fought a war against a group of nations that sought to do that for us, so let’s not become the IANO and try to denuclearize the world against the world’s wishes. We need to focus on finding the nukes- with a coalition- and getting them back into stable hands. As for the second point, we have no reason to be in Greece beyond the weapons. We should withdraw at that point.”


ON THE CANDIDATES’ RECORDS:

In this section, candidates were asked individualized questions and allowed three minutes for response. If a candidate’s name is mentioned in a response, they are not allowed to respond as with the rules for standard debate.

Question for Sec. Trenton: Secretary Trenton, your opponents and critics have labeled you as a stand-in candidate for Cecelia Paylor, claiming you are no different and that you are destined to lose in the same way as her. What is your response to these attacks?

Trenton: “My name is not Cecelia Paylor. While she’s a dear friend, she’s got very different views from me, starting with foreign policy for one. As for this election, every candidate is different. Everyone campaigns in their own way. I’m not running for vice president, I’m running for president.”

Question for Sen. Newsom: Senator Newsom, your opponents have attacked you for being inexperienced and radical. What is your response to this?

Newsom: “My opponents pick on my experience because they have nothing else to run on. That’s right: I haven’t been a standard-bearer for this party for twenty years. That’s why I’m here. That’s the point. This party literally has been represented by the same wing that Samuel Trenton represents today for four elections. We have lost four elections with this wing of the party, and we desperately need a new face. So, sure, come after me about my inexperience. I’d say that not being known in this case would be a plus. As for ‘radicalism’, that’s just another way of the establishment attempting to discredit true reform of the Civic Party. It has always appeared that the leadership of this party is intent on talking a big talk, only to take the easy way out. It was only after my insistence with my former colleague, Sadie Myers, that we create a true force of opposition in the Senate and House by banding together with the Labor Party. Instead of opposing conservative policies, Secretary Trenton was content to push conservative policies with the Everdeen and Canth administrations. So let me be clear: there’s one choice here that actually represents change, and that would be me. If you want to keep on this disastrous path for our party, Secretary Trenton would be more than happy to guide you down that path to get his lofty appointment in the next Mellark administration.”


We took a flash poll following the debate regarding who won this debate and who lost it.

Questions: 

  • Going into this debate, who were you planning to vote for in your respective district primary?
  • Who do you think was the overall winner of this debate?
  • Who do you think was the overall loser of this debate?
  • Following this debate, who are you planning to vote for in your respective district primary?

The results are below.


Going into this debate, who were you planning to vote for in your respective district primary?

Sec. Trenton – 54 percent

Sen. Newsom – 40 percent

Undecided – 6 percent

Who do you think was the overall winner of this debate?

Sen. Newsom – 78 percent

Sec. Trenton – 16 percent

Undecided – 6 percent

Who do you think was the overall loser of this debate?

Sec. Trenton – 83 percent

Sen. Newsom – 14 percent

 

Undecided – 3 percent

Following this debate, who are you planning to vote for in your respective district primary?

Sen. Newsom – 48 percent

Sec. Trenton – 39 percent

 

Undecided – 13 percent


ANALYSIS: This debate definitely provided a major setback to Secretary Trenton’s campaign. While he had been riding high prior to this debate with a lead in the most recent poll of fourteen points over Senator Newsom, Trenton crashed and burned in this debate, providing Civic voters with a preview of what could come in a future presidential debate. Particularly bad was his handling of his answer on his connection to former President Paylor, which only muddled the issue and showed complete ineptitude according to our focus group, who described the moment as “completely unpresidential.”

Meanwhile, Newsom shined, particularly with his answer on what his critics say about him. This debate rejuvenated the senator’s campaign, bumping him to a nine point lead over Trenton (which amounts to a twenty-three point bump in the polls overall). Our focus group particularly appreciated the fresh ideas and how he was intent on going a step further than what the Civic platform historically has said.

Make no mistake, a major shift happened here today. Newsom proved that his rallies aren’t just show business. Trenton, however, should be very worried right about now.

Labor presidential debate shows deep divides

Sen. Iris Canstrom speaks at the Labor presidential debate in District 5.

The Labor Party presidential debate kicked off debate season tonight, showing the deep internal divisions within the Labor Party.

Four candidates appeared onstage tonight, comprising the multiple factions of the Labor Party:

  • Former Transportation Sec. Joan Kindred: represents the mainstream liberal view of the Labor Party, championing the vision set forth by previous nominee Felicia Ren.
  • Rep. Sylvenia Denton: represents the progressive wing of the Labor Party, championing universal healthcare, open borders, and is particularly critical of military intervention by the Mellark administration.
  • Former Agriculture Sec. Walter Delta: represents the populist view of the Labor Party, championing the rights of “middle Panem”.
  • Sen. Iris Canstrom: represents the centrist wing of the Labor Party, championing a vision akin to that of previous Labor nominee and ex-president Rick Canth.

All four of these candidates engaged in a war of words against the others, revealing the deep divisions that Labor is currently engaging in at this moment. Candidates were allowed two minutes per response plus an additional minute of rebuttal time under the condition that their name was mentioned by another candidate. Below are highlights of each of the candidates:


ON THE ECONOMY:

Question: The economy under the Mellark administration has certainly improved from that of the Canth administration. However, debate persists on this topic in regards to the sustainability of this boom and the repercussions of such economic policy. Is this a sustainable policy, and as president, what would you do in regards to economic policy to ensure that Panem never falls into a deep economic crisis again?

Kindred: “This economic boom is certainly not sustainable, and if we do not recognize it, the collapse will be worse than the last. The president’s fiscal policy is nothing more than a bandage slapped on a problem that needs surgery to fix. As president, I plan to reverse the tax cuts on businesses and raise overall taxes to a reasonable amount in order to ensure that our government is funded. We must further regulate our economy in order to ensure our stability. We must also ensure that no corporation or bank is too big to fail and we must make sure that no corporation is able to own our government.”

Denton: “Ms. Kindred is correct that it’s not sustainable, but Ms. Kindred also neglects to tell it like it is, as per usual. We are in dire straits here! If we continue down this path, we won’t have the money to fund our government. We won’t be able to keep our economy up and running without a government! We absolutely need to raise our tax rate, for the good of our people and for the good of our country. And as for the banks and corporations, we certainly need to reduce their influence. The amount of money that goes into our political system is a disgrace, and that’s why my campaign, unlike any other candidate’s up here, only is taking money from individual donors, not corporations.”

Kindred’s response: “In response, Representative Denton doesn’t tell it like it is. She tells us all that she is the only real candidate against the banks and corporations; that is false. I can say for a fact that I am not receiving money from any corporate entity. However, this talk of taxing businesses into oblivion is ludicrous. We cannot afford to destroy our business environment. We can, however, hold our officials accountable and ensure transparency.”

Delta: “The whole deal here is that our government isn’t by the people and for the people anymore. The citizens of this country, despite our so-called boom, aren’t feeling any better. I’ve talked to them. Hell, I don’t even feel better. As president, you can bet that I’ll take on these too-big-to-fail businesses, but you can bet your bottom dollar as well that I’m going to be working to make small businesses great again. The little guy has suffered far too much.”

Canstrom: “My plan is this: work to improve small businesses, raise the corporate tax by ten percent, and keep our tax rate low. That’s a winning strategy to economic growth.”


ON FOREIGN POLICY:

Question: President Peeta Mellark promised that as president he would tackle major foreign policy threats from the Oceanian Empire and other terrorist groups. However, he now faces the nuclear threat of the rebels in Greece and other entities that have stolen nuclear weapons from their stockpiles. Do you support military intervention in Greece, and what would you do in this situation as president?

Denton: “I would absolutely not intervene in Greece, and the President is out of his damn mind for asking Congress for intervention. Not only is it none of our business, it’s another war to involve our troops in. It’s another chance for the Liberty Party to please their warmongering donors. It’s another chance for the President to raise his approvals before we get to face off against him. As president, we’d stay out of it.”

Delta: “I would need to see all the information on the table and then make a decision. War is something no one takes lightly, and I’m not going to feel comfortable sending troops to war until I know for certain we need to.”

Canstrom: “I personally believe that the President was correct in asking for intervention, and I would have done the same. It’s far too risky to allow such dangerous weaponry from falling into the hands of a maniac.”

Kindred: “If we are going in for an extended period of time, I do not support intervention. If we are going in solely to collect the nuclear weapons and then leaving, I would support that decision.”


ON THE CANDIDATES’ RECORDS:

In this section, candidates were asked individualized questions and allowed three minutes for response. If a candidate’s name is mentioned in a response, they are not allowed to respond as with the rules for standard debate.

Question for Mr. Delta: Secretary Delta, you have a long history in Panem’s government, serving as a governor and as the Secretary of Agriculture. However, your opponents have campaigned against you on the grounds that you have little to no foreign policy experience. What is your response to this?

Delta: “Well, let me put it this way. As secretary, I was deeply involved with coordinating with the Commerce Department in order to get trade done with foreign nations. This idea that I’m not aware of what the United Kingdom or South Africa is like is simply dumb. In fact, I’d say that virtually all of our candidates this election are good with foreign policy- except for Ms. Denton. She’s probably the least qualified candidate here.”

Question for Sen. Canstrom: Senator Canstrom, your opponents have characterized you as an ineffective Senate leader who doesn’t fight for the platform of the Labor Party. What is your response to this?

Canstrom: “I’ve gotten a lot done as leader, far more than any of my opponents would care to know. However, they also don’t see the grueling process of the Senate. They have never had to deal with so many one-track minded people at once. As for their comments regarding my supposed disloyalty to the party line, that is their way of saying that I am bipartisan. I have not abandoned the Labor Party. In fact, I’m a staunch defender of its values, and I’m also a believer that anyone is welcome in this party. Bipartisanship should be a virtue, not a vice.”

Question for Ms. Kindred: Secretary Kindred, you have a long history in the Labor Party, having been the previous vice presidential nominee twice and the subject of constant speculation as to when you would launch your run for president. However, with that comes the attack that you represent a failed approach to Labor politics and that you are too much of the “Old Guard.” What is your response to this?

Kindred: “Just because I am a former nominee does not mean that I am not able to lead Labor into a new era. If you don’t remember, Walter Delta over there is also a former vice presidential nominee. Under this definition, he also is a member of the “Old Guard.” So is Iris Canstrom to my far left. The only person here who doesn’t represent the so-called “Old Guard” is Ms. Denton over there, and she’s hardly fit to be dogcatcher. Just because I was VP nominee to Felicia Ren does not mean that I can’t bring a new version of the Labor Party to voters. I can do that, and I will do that.”

Question for Rep. Denton: Representative Denton, as stated by two of your opponents here, you entered the race as the candidate with the least governmental experience. You are also attacked for what your opponents call “hot-headedness.” What is your response to this?

Denton: “My opponents would say that I eat babies in order to get themselves across the finish line. Look, experience isn’t what is needed for this job. We need someone with a solid head on their shoulders. My opponents are exactly what’s wrong with the party today. They are so incredibly out of touch with what voters are wanting in the Capitol. So excuse my passion and “hot-headedness,” if you will. I don’t think that the scum that resides in the Capitol is used to anything that isn’t a cold carcass.”


We took a flash poll following the debate regarding who won this debate and who lost it.

Questions: 

  • Going into this debate, who were you planning to vote for in your respective district primary?
  • Who do you think was the overall winner of this debate?
  • Who do you think was the overall loser of this debate?
  • Following this debate, who are you planning to vote for in your respective district primary?

The results are below.


Going into this debate, who were you planning to vote for in your respective district primary?

Sec. Kindred – 24 percent

Rep. Denton – 20 percent

Sec. Delta – 19 percent

Sen. Canstrom – 17 percent

Undecided – 20 percent

Who do you think was the overall winner of this debate?

Rep. Denton – 30 percent

Sec. Delta – 27 percent

Sen. Canstrom – 24 percent

Sec. Kindred – 11 percent

Undecided – 8 percent

Who do you think was the overall loser of this debate?

Sec. Kindred – 41 percent

Rep. Denton – 30 percent

Sec. Delta – 17 percent

Sen. Canstrom – 5 percent

Undecided – 7 percent

Following this debate, who are you planning to vote for in your respective district primary?

Rep. Denton – 22 percent

Sen. Canstrom – 21 percent

Sec. Kindred – 20 percent

Sec. Delta – 20 percent

Undecided – 17 percent


ANALYSIS: The results of this debate are largely inconclusive. Voters from the Labor Party have been left with the same divisions and less answers from their candidates than when they started. However, some details can be deduced from our polling.

First, Joan Kindred bombed with viewers. Her response to representing the “Old Guard” did not play as she had hoped. Instead, it played to Sylvenia Denton’s advantage with our focus groups. However, Denton still perturbs many in focus groups with her demeanor. Nonetheless, Denton’s performance tonight helped her, moving her to the top of our post-debate flash poll.

In addition, Sen. Canstrom and Sec. Delta had successful nights tonight. Both played well (Canstrom for her bipartisanship, and Delta for his overall folksiness and his talk of protecting the little guy) on screen with viewers, and both were bumped in the polls as a result. However, Canstrom had the most to gain, rising to second while Delta tied for third.

This debate, if nothing else, complicated matters. Now, polling shows a very tied field for the nomination with the leading candidate, Denton, only two points away from the last place candidates, Kindred and Delta. This race is anyone’s game at this point.

Primary debates swiftly approaching as candidates scramble for coverage

The primary debates for the Labor, Civic, and Conservative Parties are swiftly approaching as each party’s candidates scramble to make a strong impact in their runs for office.

The Labor presidential debate will be held first, being held in District 5. The debate, held in a standard format, will feature all four main candidates, the order of which is determined by standing in the most recent polls and will be detailed below.

Delta — Kindred — Denton — Canstrom

This debate will be focused on a range of different topics, but most focused on the economy, foreign policy, and candidate’s records.

Next will come the Civic presidential debate, to be held in District 8. This debate will be held in a traditional style much like the Labor debate and will be the first of two. The second debate will be held during the primary season. As there are only two candidates, no specific placement will be made in regards to podium usage. The debate, like the Labor debate, will focus on many issues.

The Labor Party will then hold its vice presidential debate following the Civic debate. This is the only planned debate of the VP candidates, and will be held in District 11. The debate will be focused mainly on candidates’ qualifications and previous records, in addition to plans for a potential administration. Candidate order is featured below.

Murray — Stemp — Wendle

The final debates to be held prior to primary season will be the Conservative presidential and vice presidential debates. These debates will be held back-to-back on the same night with one being aired at 6 PM CST and the other aired at 8 PM CST. As with the Labor VP debate, the topics of the VP debate will be focused on party issues and qualifications for the vice presidency while the presidential debate will be a catchall of many topics. The order of the VP debate is below.

Oliver — Germaine — Sutherland

The order of the presidential debate is below.

Pierce — Maxwell — Jones

 

 

The Dominance of District 12

During the Dark Days, District 12 was reduced to an afterthought in the minds of the political elite in the Capitol. Now, the mining district has become a politically active hotspot, yielding high-profile figures on a regular basis.

The most obvious examples lie with the President and the First Lady. President Peeta Mellark and First Lady Katniss Everdeen (who also served two terms as president of Panem) are both natives of the mining district. Both made history and shockwaves as the first dual tumblr_mwubg4IdB21qi5k0so1_500victors of the Hunger Games and also as the final victors of the Hunger Games. Both of them brought District 12 to the limelight as they brought victory to their district, which fell into ruin as it became one of the first districts to join the Rebellion against the Capitol.

District 12 then had to rebuild. Of course, Mellark and Everdeen were there to help with the reconstruction. During this time, the future of District 12 looked dim. The firebombing by the Capitol during the war killed thousands and decimated the district. During this time, Mellark and Everdeen retreated into a semi-public persona. Meanwhile, Walter Singleton was elected governor of District 12 with Gertrude Hampton as his lieutenant governor.

Singleton, prior to his election, was on the Transition Council for District 12. Not much was known of him to the voters prior to his run, but he managed to convey a hopeful message that resonated with voters in the wartorn district.  He served with distinction for six years as governor, completing a single four-year term before his reelection to a second term that he served two years of. Secretary Walter SingletonGovernor
Singleton was noted for his infrastructure policy which has henceforth been credited as one of the largest reasons for the recovery of the district. Singleton resigned from the governorship halfway through his second term in order to become the Secretary of Energy for the Everdeen administration. As the inaugural holder, Singleton worked with his successor, Governor Gertrude Hampton, Governor Owen Talton of District 13, and other governors to ensure the success and cleanliness of Panem’s energy programs. Singleton has since served in the Canth, Wilson, and Mellark cabinets in the same position.

Governor Gertrude Hampton, who succeeded Singleton, only served the latter two years of Singleton’s term. Gertrude HamptonHowever, Hampton’s no-holds-barred attitude from serving as the head of the District Senate served her even better as governor, setting the tone for
future governors of the district.
Her term, informally known as a “speed run,” was marked by a record amount of legislation dedicated to the financial situation in the district. As such, she is credited with ensuring the financial solvency of the district following many years of debt.

Vice President Rebecca Tarson, of course, would be the next to be mentioned. Tarson is a native of District 12, coming from a low-income family. A war veteran who served as a weapons specialist and survivor of the firebombing of District 12, Tarson used her experiences to create TarsonTech, a corporation that would go on to Gov. Rebecca Tarson, a Liberty VP contender, announces the endorsements of multiple Liberty Party members following her win in District 13.become the nation’s largest weapons manufacturer. She ran for district senate with serving only a single term, but that single term transformed into many terms that put her in leadership roles, most prominently that of Senate majority leader. Her run for lieutenant governor, a vacant position following the ascension of Gertrude Hampton to the governor’s office, was met to little to no fanfare initially, but Tarson managed to turn the tables on the initial frontrunner, Land Commissioner Samson Lincoln, in a high-profile debate where she decimated him for calling her a “low-life woman who should return to homemaking and caring for her children, who must be missing her.” Tarson’s term as lieutenant governor was short as she made her first successful run for the governor’s office only two years later. Tarson would serve two full terms in the governor’s mansion, overseeing the largest business expansion in district history and improving upon the success of Governors Singleton and Hampton. However, even with the success of the district under Tarson’s tenure, her run for vice president and her subsequent success in the race for the Liberty nomination and general election were never considered a possibility. Tarson started out as a textbook definition of an underdog and secured the nomination against the odds, beating back Secretary Jonathan Madison, Senator Alexandra West, and others. While she started out as the favorite for vice president in the general election, her success was not due to the position she held as the nominee but rather because of her aggressive yet charming campaign style. She was elected in the largest landslide in Panem history alongside her running mate, Peeta Mellark.

Other figures are emerging on the political landscape of District 12 as well. Lynnette Cortez succeeded Tarson as governor after serving under her as lieutenant governor for two terms, continuing the legacy of the governors before her. District 12’s senators also are frequently in the spotlight; Hanley Trent, the senior senator, is frequently mentioned as a potential nominee to the Supreme Court during the future, while Lenora Quaker, the junior senator, previously served on House leadership as the National Liberty Congressional Committee chair and now is the deputy whip in the Senate.

An honorable mention: Governor Gale Hawthorne of District 15 and previously of District 2. Hawthorne initially hailed from the mining district and has long been a close friend to Katniss Everdeen. Then-Governor Gale Hawthorne addresses a crowd at a vice presidential campaign event. Governor Hawthorne was one of three main contenders for the Liberty VP nod last election cycle and barely didn't make the runoff for president this time. Following the Revolution, Hawthorne moved to District 2, entering the military and becoming one of Panem’s most esteemed generals. Following his military tenure, Hawthorne returned to District 2 and ran for governor, serving two terms. He ran for the vice presidency when President Everdeen ran for reelection, losing to eventual winner Celine Oswald. Hawthorne also served as Secretary of Defense under the Everdeen administration and then ran for president in the next two elections, losing to Celine Oswald again and Peeta Mellark.

On His Way Out

President Rick Canth is leaving the Capitol less regarded than when he came here for the first time as a Senator. He was viewed as the future of the Labor Party, at that point; even though he was Canth Impeachmentmuch more conservative-leaning at the time, the District 7 senator was viewed as a potential presidential or VP nominee on the grounds that the party in most people’s minds needed to move to the right to survive. They were right. Canth emerged as a consensus presidential nominee not long after he became senator, and he led Labor to to its largest gains in years. However, he soon became disenchanted with the leadership of the Labor Party, stating that “they wanted me to move to the left…that’s not me. That’s not what I believe.” He left the party in dire straits, leaving Labor to explain the exit of their most recent nominee for president. He called himself an independent in the meantime, and he was nominated and confirmed by the Panem Senate to serve in the Everdeen administration to serve as Secretary of the Interior.

During this time in the Capitol was when then-Secretary Canth decided to found a party to represent his viewpoint. Labor was too far left, hence why he left, as was the Civic Party. The Liberty Party was too obsessed with foreign affairs to fit his political views. He decided instead to form the Conservative Party. When the Secretary of the Interior found that President Everdeen was stepping away instead of running for reelection once more, he announced his candidacy straight away for the presidency of Panem.

His second run for president was no more realistic than his first one. An opposition candidate for president had never been realistically close to the presidency, but that didn’t hamper Canth’s political ambitions. He plunged straight into his campaign with the full intent of becoming the first president who was of a party other than the Liberty Party and the first elected president who was male. And for most of the time, all hope seemed lost. He was well-known and well-regarded, which allowed for him to rise above mediocre nominees of the Labor and Civic Parties, but it hardly made for a winning campaign. However, his performance in the debates made him competitive, just as it did the last election. This time, however, things were different.

The election came down to District 7, the home district of Secretary Canth and Liberty Governor Amy Oaksmith, who was votes away from being Canth’s main competition herself. The race was neck and neck as the night went on. The vice presidential race had already concluded, with a decisive win for Governor Dale Wilson of District 4, a Liberty Party member. However, Vice President Celine Oswald was simply unable to seal the deal. The night was clearly going well for Canth, but he desperately needed District 7. Lucky for him, the results came in for him, but barely; an automatic recount determined the next morning that the Vice President had actually won the district. Canth automatically pushed for a second manual recount, which encountered major pushback from the Vice President’s campaign. The Supreme Court ruled in Canth’s favor, however, allowing for a secondary recount that ended up turning out in his favor. The election would go to the House for the first time in history.

The rush to win the House election began immediately. The Liberty Party was in full crisis mode as they scrambled to ensure that their representatives kept the party line to ensure a victory for the Vice President. It all went wrong for Liberty when Labor decided to give their votes to their former nominee- the beginning of a long night for Oswald. Canth’s team was quite pleased when the Liberty Party Speaker of the House of Representatives, Constantin Richelieu, told the representatives to vote their conscience, not on party lines, in the vote. Oswald’s team, on the other hand, was furious. Ultimately, 46 of the 100 total Liberty representatives in the House broke with the party line, voting for Secretary Canth. This gave him a majority, electing him the first male and opposition party President of Panem.

Tensions were high in the first days of the Canth administration. Considering how Canth got into office, everyone was waiting for the first slip-up. Canth’s approval ratings were already middling, skipping the obligatory honeymoon phase experienced by most presidents. It of course did not help when it was revealed that two representatives, both Liberty Party members, were bribed in exchange for their votes for Canth. A Congressional panel was convened along with a federal investigation, both of which found that the new President did not have anything to do with the bribes but that it was highly likely he was elected illegally.  His numbers tanked rapidly, with approvals reaching as low as 22%. This was the lowest of any post-Revolution president, even Cecelia Paylor.

However, Canth rebounded. He found his way back up through bills combating crime in Panem and through his cooperation with Liberty to increase funding for space technology. His approvals rose to the standard 49-50%, typical for a Panem president halfway through their first term. In the midterms, the Conservative Party defied political gravity as they rose to the second largest party in the Panem Congress after being largely nonexistent before. However, then came the Archibald Center attacks. 100,000 people dead, thanks to the Oceanian Empire. At the time of the attacks, Canth was in District 7 at the time championing an education bill at an elementary school. Very quickly he drafted an address to the nation to confront this new terrorist threat, turning an education speech into one of national security.  His response was later characterized as “sloppy” and “impeachable” by his political adversaries. Once again, his approval among the citizens of Panem dropped steeply.

President Rick Canth (Conservative-D7) at a charity benefit in District 9. The embattled President of Panem is the first from a party other than Liberty and the first male president. Canth faces a long road to reelection in November.And yet, he decided to run again. President Canth announced his third run for the presidency, and it seemed like last time around that
he would be unopposed. Then came along Robert F. Maxwell: a billionaire businessman with nothing to lose. A bruising primary ensued, dividing the Conservative Party into the Canth and Maxwell factions. The primary ultimately ended up on the floor of the
convention hall as the candidates’ surrogates fought for dominance. Ultimately, President Canth and his brother, Representative Jackson Canth, were nominated for president and vice president respectively, despite the fact that Maxwell and Lynn Germaine were set to be nominated. As a result, the two opponents filed as independent candidates to face the Canths once again in the general election.

For a while, everything ran smoothly. Though the President wasn’t wildly popular, he was liked enough to stand a decent chance of reelection. He hovered between second and third in the polls, depending on how Maxwell was doing that day. He fended off all attacks that came his way, despite his tarnished record. In a stroke of bad luck though came the recession. It hit hard, and it hit fast. The report that announced its arrival was the death knell for the Canth campaign. They dropped to near zero in the polls and were unable to revive their bid following that. Their opponents hammered them time after time, insisting that the Canths had failed Panem. As if it couldn’t get any worse, then came the hacks. Sure, Maxwell’s campaign was hit first, throwing all confidence in him into a political wastebasket, but the presidential hack was infinitely worse. It revealed that not only was the Capitol vulnerable, it was corrupt. The President’s office was allowing access depending on a price. He was unable to ensure the safety of classified information. And of course, he happened to be directly involved in a massive cover-up of electoral fraud, as did his brother and his chief of staff. It ensured that the President would not get reelected even if it were possible, and on election day, Senator Peeta Mellark, the husband of former President Katniss Everdeen, was swept into office on the largest Liberty wave election in history.

Which brings us here to the impeachment. The House had zero issue ensuring a bipartisan vote to impeach Canth. In fact, the bill was expedited through the House. Now, Canth faces the Senate virtually alone. Following the revelations of electoral fraud, the joint Liberty/Conservative senatorial deal fell through, ending any chance of mercy among his former Senate colleagues. It now poses a major question:

How will the President leave? Will he leave by the process of impeachment, putting him in jail and ceding power to Vice President Dale Wilson, a Liberty member? Will he resign his office, preserving the integrity of his reputation and the office, also leaving Wilson president? Or will a miracle occur, allowing Canth to win over the Senate and remain President for the little time he has left?

That’s the real question. And that’s the story of the President who will go down in history as many firsts: first elected male president, first opposition party president, first bipartisan administration, first president elected by the House and without a majority of the popular and electoral vote, first president to be federally investigated, and the first president to be impeached.