List of fictional United States presidencies of historical figures (A–B)

Lists of fictional Presidents of the United States
A–B C–D E–F
G–H I–J K–M
N–R S–T U–Z
Unnamed fictional presidents
Fictional presidencies of
historical figures
A–B C–D E–G
H–J K–L M–O
P–R S–U V–Z
Candidates
Vice presidents

The following is a list of real or historical people who have been portrayed as President of the United States in fiction, although they did not hold the office in real life. This is done either as an alternate history scenario, or occasionally for humorous purposes. Also included are actual US Presidents with a fictional presidency at a different time and/or under different circumstances than the one in actual history.

AEdit

John AdamsEdit

John Quincy AdamsEdit

Susan B. AnthonyEdit

  • In a parallel universe featured in the Sliders Season One episode "The Weaker Sex" in which women held the positions of power and influence and men were treated like second class citizens, Susan B. Anthony had served as President during the late 19th century.

Spiro AgnewEdit

Aaron Burr AlstonEdit

  • The grandson of Aaron Burr as well as the son of Theodosia Burr Alston and Joseph Alston. In "The War of '07" by Jayge Carr in the anthology Alternate Presidents by Mike Resnick, Aaron Burr Alston becomes the 4th President on September 14, 1836 upon the death of his maternal grandfather, to whom he had been vice president. It is implied that the presidency will henceforth be a hereditary office, making the United States a de facto monarchy or family dictatorship, as Alston's vice president is Paul Aaron Burr. In reality, Aaron Burr Alston died on June 30, 1812 at the age of 10 due to a fever. His grandfather therefore outlived him by more than 24 years.

Benedict ArnoldEdit

  • Benedict Arnold takes charge of the American Revolutionary cause after George Washington dies from pneumonia at Valley Forge and the disintegration of his army, in the story "Arnoldstown" by Mitchell Cummings. In a series of brilliant campaigns, Arnold snatches victory from the jaws of near-certain defeat and goes on to become the First President of the United States and its most revered Founding Father. The story's name is derived from the US capital in this timeline being "Arnoldstown, D.C.", with his name also being commemorated in the State of Arnoldia in the Pacific Northwest and numerous other placenames.
  • Similarly, in the DC Comics graphic novel JLA: Earth 2, US money from the alternate timeline known as Earth 2 bears the picture of Benedict Arnold instead of George Washington.

David Rice AtchisonEdit

  • In the short story "How the South Preserved the Union" by Ralph Roberts in the anthology Alternate Presidents by Mike Resnick, David Rice Atchison, the President pro tempore of the United States Senate and a prominent pro-slavery activist, took office as the 13th President when both his predecessor Zachary Taylor and Vice President Millard Fillmore were killed in a carriage accident shortly into their terms in 1849. Several months after President Atchison's accession, the American Civil War broke out on April 17, 1849 with the secession of Massachusetts from the Union and the Second Battle of Lexington and Concord, from which the rebelling abolitionists, who styled themselves as the New Minutemen, emerged victorious. New Hampshire and Vermont seceded shortly thereafter and were soon followed by the three remaining New England states, New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. The seceding Northeastern states banded together to form the New England Confederacy with Daniel Webster as its first and only President and the revolutionary abolitionist John Brown as the commander of its army. The war came to an end in 1855, two years after President Atchison had issued a proclamation promising that any slave who fought in the United States Army would be granted his freedom following the end of the war and that any factory slave who worked satisfactorily would be granted his or her freedom after the war and would be paid for that work from then onwards. He was succeeded by Stephen A. Douglas, who became the 14th President and introduced the Civil Rights Act 1861 which abolishes slavery in the United States in its entirety.

BEdit

James BakerEdit

  • James Baker is elected President in 1996 (possibly already having served a first term beginning in 1993) in the story "Prince Pat" by George Alec Effinger in the anthology Alternate Kennedys. He was defeated in his bid for re-election in 2000 by the 37-year-old Patrick Bouvier Kennedy, the youngest son of former President John F. Kennedy.

Frederick BarbarossaEdit

Alben W. BarkleyEdit

Joe BidenEdit

  • In the first episode of The Last Ship, it is implied that Joe Biden served as President for one week after Barack Obama succumbed to the Red Flu. He then also succumbed to the virus, and was replaced by President August, the former fictitious Speaker of the House of Representatives, who delivers the news via teleconference to the USS Nathan James. Although neither he nor Obama are mentioned by name in the series, a printed news article in the Season 2 episode "Safe Zone" shows Barack Obama as the incumbent President before the outbreak, meeting with the newly appointed Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Jeffery Michener (who also goes on to serve as president later in the series). This strongly implies that Biden still served as Vice President alongside Obama in the show and succeeded him briefly after his death.

James G. BlaineEdit

  • In the first Southern Victory Series novel How Few Remain by Harry Turtledove, James G. Blaine was elected President in 1880, the only Republican other than Abraham Lincoln to hold that office. Blaine was elected by Maine as a Republican to Congress in 1862, a major accomplishment in a year when the Confederate States of America had won the War of Secession (1861–1862) with the support of the United Kingdom and France, gaining its independence, and the Republican Party was being made to pay. He served for the next seven terms, earning a reputation as a fiery orator and debater in a minority party. As the people of the United States grew tired of the conciliatory stance the Democrats took towards the Confederate States, the Republicans soon began regaining seats. In the 1878 elections, following Democratic President Samuel J. Tilden's unpopular decision to remove the twelve stars representing the states of the Confederacy from the Flag of the United States, the Republicans regained the Congress. Blaine's star rose dramatically, and in 1880, he was the Republican Party's nominee for President. He won on an anti-Confederate platform. Blaine was immediately put to the test. The Confederacy recoiled at the return of a "Black" Republican to the presidency. Moreover, Confederate States President James Longstreet had been counting on the Democrats' indifference to successfully purchase the states of Sonora and Chihuahua from the Second Mexican Empire in 1881. President Blaine, backed by the popular will and anger of the American people, moved to block the purchase by threat of war. Longstreet, confident in his country's alliances with the United Kingdom and the French Third Republic, defied Blaine and the Second Mexican War began. It soon became clear that Blaine and the United States were out of their depth. The United States Army was woefully unprepared, suffering setbacks on multiple fronts. When Washington, D.C. came under Confederate artillery fire in late 1881, Blaine evacuated the seat of government to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where he established his residence in the Powel House. He was the final US President to use the White House as his official residence. While Washington, D.C. remained the de jure capital of the United States and continued to be used for official functions such as inaugurations and state funerals, Philadelphia was the de facto capital from 1881 onwards. Benjamin Harrison, the grandson of the Whig Party President William Henry Harrison, served as his Secretary of War and consequently shouldered much of the blame for the United States' military failures during the war. After over a year of bloody fighting, the United States sought an armistice. The Confederate States successfully took possession of the Mexican states. For the second time in a generation, the United States had lost a war while under Republican leadership. Further humiliating Blaine at a personal level, the only territorial concession the United States made was northern Maine, his home state, which was annexed by Britain into the Canadian province of New Brunswick. The Republican Party had split in 1882, with most of the Conservative members following Benjamin Butler to the wayward Democrats while former President Lincoln's supporters joined the Socialist Party, which soon replaced the Republicans as the nation's second party. Ironically, President Blaine, in his military defeat, had laid the foundation the United States' eventual victory in the Great War (1914–1917) through two acts. Firstly, on April 22, 1882, Blaine declared a holiday to commemorate the United States' defeat called Remembrance Day. This day soon birthed a political ideology which the reinvigorated Democrats adopted as their own. Secondly, Blaine formed political ties with the German Empire, which eventually led to the alliance known as the Central Powers. He later went on to lose the 1884 election in a landslide, retiring to obscurity. Only truly die-hard Republicans revered him. President Blaine's defeat marked the beginning of 36 consecutive years of Democratic control of the Powel House which only came to an end with the election of the first Socialist president Upton Sinclair in 1920.

Anne BoleynEdit

  • In Margot Stephens' short story "All bow to the Queen!", Anne Boleyn is rescued from the Tower of London by a time traveler who fell hopelessly in love with her. Fearing the wrath of King Henry VIII, the Governor of the Tower conceals Anne's disappearance and lets a disguised prostitute get beheaded in her place. Arriving in 2029 America, Anne Boleyn adjusts with astonishing speed to 21st Century society and technology. Going to Hollywood, she becomes a major film star, first playing herself in a hugely successful historical drama and then going on to make seven blockbusters, each grossing more than any film ever made before. She then gets top ratings as a brilliant TV talk show host, highly witty and regaling her guests and the audience at home with spicy anecdotes from her 16th Century life. Finally, she capitalizes on her success to enter politics and in a whirlwind campaign gets elected President of the United States. After half a year in office she proclaims herself Queen Anne the First, the change from Republic to Monarchy being approved in a referendum by no less than 78% of the captivated American public. The story ends with Queen Anne holding the final audition for the position of Royal Prince Consort, a shortlist of a hundred final entrants having been selected out of more than a million men who offered themselves - with the Queen having stipulated that she would not marry anyone named "Henry".

Chastity BonoEdit

Sonny BonoEdit

  • Sonny Bono is mentioned as President of the United States in the movie The Demolitionist (1995) set in the near future. His reaction to a mortar attack on The White House was that it was "Sad, really sad, and kind of freaky."

John Wilkes BoothEdit

John W. BrickerEdit

Jerry BrownEdit

  • In one of alternate realities depicted in The Coming of the Quantum Cats by Frederik Pohl, Jerry Brown was President in 1986. Considered weak by one of the characters in his timeline, he was largely a puppet ruler, with the military being the real force governing the country.

William Jennings BryanEdit

  • In Ward Moore's novel Bring the Jubilee, one of the time travelling characters in the alternate reality witnessed the 1896 presidential election, where he had to resist the temptation of covering the confident bets made by McKinley's supporters, who were unaware that William Jennings Bryan would go on to serve three terms as President. He was the candidate for the Populist Party.
  • In the short story "Plowshare" by Martha Soukup in the anthology Alternate Presidents by Mike Resnick, William Jennings Bryan was elected as the 25th President in 1896 over William McKinley. His vice president was Arthur Sewall. He ended the Spanish–American War by granting full independence to Cuba, the Philippines, Puerto Rico and Hawaii. Only 36 years old at the time of his election, he was the youngest man ever elected to the presidency. President Bryan served one term from 1897 to 1901, declining to run for re-election in 1900 as he believed that presidents should only serve one term. In spite of this, in 1915, he revealed to the American public that he intended to prevent the expected Republican presidential nominee Theodore Roosevelt's plan to take the US into the Great War from coming to fruition by running against him and defeating him in the 1916 election. During his presidency, he was a vocal supporter of women's suffrage, which was granted throughout the United States in 1913.
  • In one of the alternate timelines featured in The Coming of the Quantum Cats by Frederik Pohl, the election of William Jennings Bryan to the Presidency launched the US in the direction of intolerant religious conservatism - culminating in a highly repressive regime, virtually a theocracy, by the later 20th Century.

Aaron BurrEdit

George H. W. BushEdit

  • In a parallel universe visited by Superboy and Lex Luthor in the Superboy episode "Roads Not Taken, Part One", George H. W. Bush was President in 1990.
  • Bush becomes the 42nd President of the United States rather than the 41st in The White House Mess by Christopher Buckley, roundly defeating his predecessor Thomas Nelson Tucker in 1992.
  • Bush serves two full terms from January 20, 1989 to January 20, 1997 in the science fiction novel Einstein's Bridge. In 1991, he is not content with liberating Kuwait but continues the Gulf War up to conquering Iraq and toppling Saddam Hussein. Popular elation at eliminating Saddam Hussein serves to mask economic failures from the electorate, letting Bush win a second term in 1992 – while the problems of holding on to Iraq become evident only later. During his second term Bush approves completion of the Superconducting Super Collider in his home state of Texas – with the disastrous result that a few years later the operational SSC provides a foothold to a vicious race of insectoid extraterrestrials, who proceed to completely exterminate humanity and colonize Earth. Two survivors travel back in time and in order to prevent the disaster, change the outcome of the war and get Bill Clinton elected so as to ensure that the project would be cancelled.
  • The Chopper Cops dime novel tetralogy by Rick Mackin also mentions Bush has served two terms, with one of his final acts being the creation of the US Tactical Police Force.
  • Appeared as "Mr. President" in The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3 episode "Reptiles in the Rose Garden". Here, he didn't have any speaking lines, only talking in the telephone the whole time. Neither he, "Mrs. President" or others working in the White House noticed that Bowser and the Koopalings lifted the White House into Dark Land in an attempt to take over America, but was stopped by Mario and Luigi.
  • In the short story "Dukakis and the Aliens" by Robert Sheckley contained in the anthology Alternate Presidents by Mike Resnick, Bush lost the 1988 election to Michael Dukakis, the Governor of Massachusetts, who became the 41st President. Dukakis was eventually revealed to be an enemy alien, and "friendly" aliens along with the Men in Black have to adjust the timeline to ensure that Bush is elected instead.
  • In the short story "Fellow Americans" by Eileen Gunn, also contained in the anthology Alternate Presidents by Mike Resnick, Barry Goldwater defeated the early favorite and incumbent Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964 and went on to be re-elected in 1968. During his term in office, President Goldwater ordered that nuclear weapons be deployed against North Vietnam during the Vietnam War. Bush was elected in 1988 with Dan Quayle as his running mate. By 1990, he was growing increasingly unpopular due to his perceived poor handling of the economic recession. After a failed assassination attempt at the 1990 New York World's Fair, Robert F. Kennedy, the Governor of New York, informed his wife Ethel that he intended to seek the Democratic presidential nomination in 1992 and run against Bush, in spite of the fact that he had previously been reluctant to actively campaign for the nomination. It was Vice President Quayle's ambition to send a manned mission to Mars, though Bush was rather more skeptical about its viability. Given that Goldwater served two terms whereas Richard Nixon retired from politics and was given his own late-night talk show Tricky Dick on NBC in 1970, it is unclear if Bush succeeded Ronald Reagan as the 41st President as he did in reality. None of the presidents who served between the end of Goldwater's second term in 1973 and Bush's inauguration in 1989 are identified in the text of the story.
  • In a parallel universe featured in the Sliders Season Two episode "The Good, the Bad and the Wealthy", Bush was the President of the Republic of Texas in 1996. Shortly after the outbreak of the American Civil War in 1861, Texas, which had only been admitted to the Union in 1845 and was still hotly contested territory with the Mexican government, asserted its status as a sovereign nation by re-establishing the defunct Republic of Texas and began spreading both westwards and northwards. Without the troops to stop the Texians from doing so, the United States and the Mexico let this formidable country expand its size and power across the continent, eventually coming to encompass all of the territory from Texas to the former US state of California. It is not made clear what effect the rapid expansion of the Republic of Texas in the 1860s had on the Civil War and the prospects of victory for the Confederate States of America.
  • In an alternate timeline featured in Fantastic Four, Bush died of pneumonia while in office and was succeeded by Oliver North, who became the 42nd President.
  • In the short story "Mahogany Dreams" by Lyn Nichols contained in the anthology Alternate Tyrants by Mike Resnick, Ronald Reagan won the 1980 election with Bush as his running mate, defeating the Democratic incumbent Jimmy Carter in a landslide as he did in real life. After only 69 days in office, Reagan was assassinated in Washington, D.C. on March 30, 1981 by John Hinckley, Jr. as the culmination of an effort to impress Jodie Foster. After William Henry Harrison, who died on his 32nd day in office on April 4, 1841, he was the second shortest serving President in US history. He was succeeded by George H. W. Bush, who became the 41st President. However, Alexander Haig, the Secretary of State, was determined to preserve the presidency from continued denigration and plotted to remove his rivals and place himself in the Oval Office, including Bush.

George W. BushEdit

  • In the future history mockumentary film Death of a President written and directed by Gabriel Range, George W. Bush was assassinated by a sniper in Chicago, Illinois on October 19, 2007 while addressing an economic forum in the Sheraton Hotel, which was preceded by an anti-war rally at the same location. News outlets immediately began reporting on the assassination along with its political ramifications. After arresting and interrogating the anti-war activists Frank Molini and Samir Masri, the authorities turned their attention to an IT professional of Syrian origin named Jamal Abu Zikri. Vice President Dick Cheney succeeded Bush as the 44th President and used the possible al-Qaeda connection with the suspected assassin Zikri to push his own domestic security agenda. He called for the enactment of legislation PATRIOT Act III, attempting to increase the investigative powers of the FBI, the police and other government agencies over U.S. citizens and resident aliens as he contemplated going to war with Syria. Zikri was convicted of killing President Bush and sentenced to death, based on dubious forensic evidence, on April 10, 2008. Shortly afterwards, a new report surfaced, substantiated by interviews with Marianne Claybon, which indicated that the assassin was most likely her husband Al Claybon, a resident of Rock Island, Illinois and a veteran of the Gulf War whose son Daniel Claybon had been killed in the Iraq War. Claybon blamed Bush for his son's death and committed suicide almost immediately after Bush's assassination. In his suicide note addressed to his younger son Casey, himself an Iraq War veteran as well as an early suspect in the investigation into the assassination, which read: "Everything I stood for and raised you to stand for has turned bad. There's no honor in dying for an immoral cause. For lies. I love my country, but I love God, and the sons He gave me even more. I must do the right thing by you and by David. George Bush killed our David, and I cannot forgive him for that." Ten months after President Bush's assassination, Zikri remained on death row at the Stateville Correctional Center as government officials were deliberately delaying his legal appeal. Moreover, in his late father's Rock Island house, Casey Claybon found evidence of his father's planning of the shooting. The most incriminating piece of evidence was a copy of a top secret presidential itinerary outlining, to the minute, President Bush's whereabouts while in Chicago on October 19, 2007. The news report ended while the US government was continuing to investigate how the suspected assassin Al Claybon obtained that top secret document. The final closing titles of the film inform the viewer that President Cheney's USA PATRIOT Act III, was signed into permanent law in the United States, stating that "[i]t has granted investigators unprecedented powers of detention and surveillance, and further expanded the powers of the executive branch."
  • In the alternate history novel 43*: When Gore Beat Bush-A Political Fable by Jeff Greenfield, Al Gore defeated Bush in the 2000 election and became the 43rd President.

Jeb BushEdit

  • Jeb Bush was president from 2001 to 2005 in From the Files of the Time Rangers, a mosaic novel by Richard Bowes. Presumably this is a fictionalized version of the actual son and brother of the historical presidents George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush. Briefly mentioned several times in the novel, Jeb Bush has gotten into office as a result of election fraud engineered by his family in Texas. He is defeated by the fictional "Once and Future President" Timothy Garde MacAuley.
  • In the independent feature film Duck, he is said to be the president of the United States, but is never seen, only referenced by way of the policies that his administration and Republicans in tow have enacted.
  • The series finale of Glee has him succeeding Barack Obama in 2016 and winning a second term in 2020, with Sue Sylvester as his running mate.

Benjamin ButlerEdit

  • In Ward Moore's novel "Bring the Jubilee", the Confederacy wins the Battle of Gettysburg, wins its independence and imposes a humiliating peace on the rump United States. The Republican Party is totally discredited by the disaster and the voters turn to the Democrats, especially those who had most opposed Lincoln' war. Clement Vallandigham and afterwards Horatio Seymour held the Presidency between 1865 and 1877. The Democrat administrations, however, prove disastrous. Due to high reparation exacted by the victorious Confederacy, the US economy goes into economic crisis and galloping inflation, which becomes dizzying under President Seymour and precipitates the food riots of 1873 and 1874. During the 1876 presidential election, Benjamin Butler - who could claim credit for one of the few successful episodes of the ultimately disastrous war - wins the Presidency as candidate of the revived Whig Party. He manages to stabilize the currency by reorganization and drastic deflation. Still, the harm of the immediate postwar years proves irreversible, the United States is permanently crippled and goes into the 20th Century as a poor backward country overshadowed by the prosperous Confederacy.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Crowley, John William (2006). Little, Big. New York: Perennial. pp. 346, 429. ISBN 978-0-06-112005-3.