Warning: This work has been rated 16+ for language.
Nickson was tired-- beyond tired. On any other day, he probably would have gone to bed early, but he didn't have a choice, not this morning. It was the twenty-first of December, just a few days until Christmas. Every state government was busy, busy, busy, working out what they were going to do. Texas was slipping from his fingers, it had just been announced that Ohio was not in play, and North Carolina had just edged over into the Free South's column.
He had Utah, Missouri, and Kansas in the bag-- all states that he knew Winthrop was hoping would turn out for herself just so she could split a solidly red country-- but he was more worried about Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama. All three had officially seceded and joined the larger Republican country, but two had voted for Governor Davis of Texas, while Alabama broke for their popular governor. Word on the street was that Iowa and Texas would merge, taking those three out of the equation for the American League of States.
Even without that to worry about, there was still the placement of his capital to discuss. Tennessee had two of the largest cities in the American South-- Nashville and Memphis. While both were more Democratic, they were stuck in Republican strongholds-- and that meant they couldn’t break for Winthrop. Corinth, Mississippi was also an option on multiple political levels. It could pressure the states to remain with the ALS, it could solidify the GOP’s hold on the Deep South, and it could further emphasize how independent the red states sought to be.
‘Mr. President? We’re ready for you.” The deep voice of the elderly Billy Carter sounded in the doorway. The old man was the victor of Alabama, and Nickson despised him entirely and did little to conceal it most of the time. But not today: for now, he would hide it, let it fester and grow, stick it out while awaiting the results from the other states.
“Of course,” the Lousianan replied. He straightened his black tie before moving through the doorway into the next room. He was in Baton Rouge at a large hotel with several meetings going on at once. In this one, he had gathered some of his chosen Cabinet members, a select few Senators, and three other governors. “Ladies,” he said smoothly, “gentlemen.”
“Mr. President,” they all echoed. Nickson motioned for them to all sit. He remained standing, however, towering above all of them as he continued to speak.
“I’ve called y’all here for a few reasons.” He tucked a hand into his suit, putting on his business demeanor. “We can’t have any of this liberal shit running our nation anymore, y’all hear me? I want y’all to drat a new constitution to present to the states in a month. Till then, I’m gonna have Taft pull Texas to us.”
“Sir?” Senator Baume of Kentucky interrupted, her voice slightly concerned. “Is the vice president the best bet to take Texas? Surely Secretary Wallace is more qualified--”
“Secretary Wallace is more qualified,” Nickson admitted, “but he’s a Yankee. Taft is from Texas. Trust me.”
“Of course, Mr. President,” the Senator replied, “I wouldn’t dare question you. I merely mean to say that it might look like you don’t want Texas if you send Taft instead of the Secretary of State.”
"Then Texas?" Carter said. "That sounds a bit risky, Mr. President, surely you gotta know that. We're already weakened without Texas--"
"It is what it is," Nickson reaffirmed. "Wallace will be in Indiana soon. That's that. Period."
Baume nodded slowly. “Of course… Mr. President.”
Nickson clapped his hands together and declared, “Let’s get to work.”