Voting in the Weird West?

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Thunderforge
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Voting in the Weird West?

#1 Postby Thunderforge » Sun Oct 28, 2012 10:45 pm

So the timeline of The Last Sons goes through the November 1880 presidential election for the Union and I figure it would be a nice little addition to allow the posse to cast their vote, thus getting involved with some of the stuff back east. Is this possible for the typically roving posse? I know in most states today you have to prove that you've lived for at least 30 days in the state you are voting in, but I don't know if it was like that in 1880.

Unfortunately, the internet seems very scarce on information on how cowboys would vote in the Wild West. I can't find anything about registering to vote or about absentee balloting during that time (did it even exist back then? It seems like it would be horribly inefficient). So does anybody know whether or not the typical posse can vote?

Also, if you were born in a southern state while it still in the Union (thus making you a United States citizen at the time), but it's now in the CSA, are you still a United States citizen or are you now entirely a Confederate States citizen (or a dual citizen)? And does this mean you would be allowed to vote in the Union Election?
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#2 Postby RJack » Sun Oct 28, 2012 11:32 pm

The only presidential election we ever had during the Civil War, 1864, did not count electoral votes from the states that were rebelling. I'd imagine that continues in the Deadlands timeline. Because the desire to strengthen ties with Colorado and Kansas, I'd imagine that they'd still be included, but note that Tales o' Terror mentions that many votes from western states were "disputed" during the 1876 election, because of suspicions of fraud.

Several states (not all) in the North allowed absentee voting by Union soldiers in 1864, but it seems to have been something of an exception.

Territories in 1880 (Washington, Idaho, Montana, Dakota, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico) are not given votes in the Electoral College anyway, so residents there didn't have a say in presidential elections.

Otherwise, lists of registered voters are maintained by county governments based on state or territorial constitutions and laws. Statewide political parties would organize voter registration, which typically required pretty solid proof of residency. Laws varied by state/territory, and local politicians and party officials would often try to use confusion about those laws to deny the vote. This is without even getting into stuff like systemic race- and class-based disenfranchisement.

Upshot is: it's really, really complicated. In general, if you outright owned property, you could be registered to vote. If you didn't, even though the land-owning requirements had been stripped, it was still harder to prove residency and so could be very difficult.

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#3 Postby catalac » Sun Oct 28, 2012 11:48 pm

well even if they found a way to vote it wouldn't be likely to make it through all the inconsistently applied voting rules.
but say it did. before the war rules about voting were typically exploited (and probably after as well but by then the us gov was at least trying to fix the system) take for example Kansas and Missouri when it came time to vote on a specific thing (in the most famous dispute slavery) in that area a lot of people decided to get up and move to that area just so they could influence that election in their causes favor. when something came up in the state they came from they would move back so they could influence there.
now not everybody did this but enough did that it became well known enough to influence current voting laws about proof of residency and making sure each person only votes once.
a thing to think about

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#4 Postby Nordicnomad » Mon Oct 29, 2012 11:23 am

Most of the west was treated very similarly to how Puerto Rico is today. Where they have all the rights of citizens, but have no right to vote in non-local elections because they don't pay all the taxes of those who live and own property in full states.

Now disputed territories in the game universe are a different matter entirely. Technically they're states of both countries. So I would suppose you could place a vote for either election if they're held at the same time. But how easy and non-dangerous it would be to place said vote is another matter entirely, and then who knows if elections for the north and south would be held at the same time.

Sounds like the posse might be hired to defend a polling station and uncover a nefarious plot to interrupt the due process of the election? :wink:

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#5 Postby beholdsa » Tue Oct 30, 2012 3:18 pm

Do we have any information about the Confederate election in 1880?

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#6 Postby ValhallaGH » Tue Oct 30, 2012 3:29 pm

beholdsa wrote:Do we have any information about the Confederate election in 1880?

The CSA president is on a 6 year term. 1860, '66, '72, '78, '84. So, there is no CSA presidential election to worry about. :wink:
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#7 Postby The Stray » Thu Nov 01, 2012 6:49 pm

ValhallaGH wrote:The CSA president is on a 6 year term. 1860, '66, '72, '78, '84. So, there is no CSA presidential election to worry about. :wink:


Unless the cabal of Jeff Davis' cabinet decides to go through with their plan to assassinate Eric Michele...
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#8 Postby Sitting Duck » Fri Nov 02, 2012 8:36 am

You'll pardon me for being pedantic, but the first Confederate election was in 1861. In the Deadlands timeline, the 1873 election never happened due to martial law and a special election was held in 1876. Not sure how this affects future Confederate elections. Guess we'll have to ask Cutter.
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#9 Postby ValhallaGH » Fri Nov 02, 2012 9:09 am

Sitting Duck wrote:You'll pardon me for being pedantic,

I will actually. :razz: I've never been able to find when the first CSA presidential election occurred; so thank you.
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#10 Postby Cutter XXIII » Fri Nov 02, 2012 9:30 am

Sitting Duck wrote:Not sure how this affects future Confederate elections. Guess we'll have to ask Cutter.

I can't quite recall the details of my research during The Last Sons (wrote it a while back), but I remember coming to the conclusion that there'd be no CSA election in 1880.

Assuming we're correct on six-year terms, 1882 sees the next one. So that'd likely be covered in Stone and a Hard Place (1881-1882) or in Trail Guide: The South.

Beyond that, haven't had time to give it much thought. :)
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#11 Postby newForumNewName » Fri Nov 02, 2012 10:39 am

Assuming that history aligns with real world history until 1863, the first CSA election was in 1861. On a six year cycle, that would put the elections in 1867, 1873, 1879, and 1885. Hope that doesn't screw anyone up.
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#12 Postby ValhallaGH » Fri Nov 02, 2012 11:10 am

Emphasis mine:
The Permanent Constitution provided for a President of the Confederate States of America, elected to serve a six-year term but without the possibility of re-election.

From the Executive section. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confederate_States_of_America#Constitution
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#13 Postby newForumNewName » Fri Nov 02, 2012 7:11 pm

ValhallaGH wrote:Emphasis mine:
The Permanent Constitution provided for a President of the Confederate States of America, elected to serve a six-year term but without the possibility of re-election.

From the Executive section. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confederate_States_of_America#Constitution

Yes. Exactly. February of 1861 with six-year terms puts the CSA elections in the months prior to the inaugurations. I would assume then that the elections actually took place in 1866, 1872, and 1878, with an upcoming election in 1884. While the inaugurations took place in 1867, 1873, 1879, and one scheduled for 1885.
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#14 Postby VonDan » Fri Nov 02, 2012 7:36 pm

Things to do when voting in the weird west


Slanderous Speeches

Lively local conventions with fist a cuffs involving dapper canes

Blackjack Thuggery at the polls

Stuffing Ballot Boxes with Ghost rock and Dynomite

Guarding Ballot Boxes

Steeling Ballot boxes

Build Nefarious Ballot Counting mad science machines

Mental Manipulation of neutral parties by other worldly candidates
Last edited by VonDan on Sat Nov 03, 2012 6:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

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#15 Postby The Stray » Fri Nov 02, 2012 8:41 pm

newForumNewName wrote:
ValhallaGH wrote:Emphasis mine:
The Permanent Constitution provided for a President of the Confederate States of America, elected to serve a six-year term but without the possibility of re-election.

From the Executive section. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confederate_States_of_America#Constitution

Yes. Exactly. February of 1861 with six-year terms puts the CSA elections in the months prior to the inaugurations. I would assume then that the elections actually took place in 1866, 1872, and 1878, with an upcoming election in 1884. While the inaugurations took place in 1867, 1873, 1879, and one scheduled for 1885.


The trouble with following that timeline is that in the Deadlandsverse the Confederate Constitution was changed in 1866 to allow Jefferson Davis to run for reelection, and Jefferson Davis suspended Open Elections in 1871 after the Battle of Washington (before he was replaced by the doppelganger) and elections weren't restored until the elections of 1876. Davis stole that election and then was assassinated in 1878 and Secretary of War Eric Michele ascended to the presidency. So assuming that elections have returned to their normal schedule of six-year terms, the next election is scheduled for 1882, and the new president will be inaugurated in 1883.

It would be cool seeing some of this covered in Trail Guides: The South when it comes out!
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#16 Postby King Snarf » Sat Nov 03, 2012 5:49 am

The Stray wrote:
ValhallaGH wrote:The CSA president is on a 6 year term. 1860, '66, '72, '78, '84. So, there is no CSA presidential election to worry about. :wink:


Unless the cabal of Jeff Davis' cabinet decides to go through with their plan to assassinate Eric Michele...


That's actually not a possibility, if you've read Christopher McGlothlin's "director's cut" of Dead Presidents. To avoid spoilers, let me just say there's a very good reason why Michele ascended to the Presidency instead of anyone else.

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#17 Postby Thunderforge » Sat Nov 03, 2012 12:17 pm

King Snarf wrote:That's actually not a possibility, if you've read Christopher McGlothlin's "director's cut" of Dead Presidents.

A director's cut? Link please!
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#18 Postby King Snarf » Sat Nov 03, 2012 10:01 pm

Uh... That was something those on the Deadlands listserv could get sent as an attachment. I could go through my emails, but I'm lazy. :razz: :wink:

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#19 Postby Thunderforge » Sat Nov 03, 2012 10:15 pm

If you get unlazy, please PM it to me and I'll host it online so others can access it!
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#20 Postby Cutter XXIII » Sun Nov 04, 2012 10:02 am

Thunderforge wrote:If you get unlazy, please PM it to me and I'll host it online so others can access it!

If it was distributed solely via e-mail request on a listserv, by the author, it's probably not meant to be "open access."

And if it includes the rest of the book, it's kinda Pinnacle's intellectual property. Know what I mean?
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