As the inheritor of Roosevelt's "New Deal State", Clariston is arguably the single most powerful person on planet Earth. And, being the Head-of-State and Commander-in-Chief of the world's largest economy and strongest military, Clariston is a major player on the world stage. Her gender, nationality and continuation of the unpopular Winter War (an attempt by the United States to militarily acquire Russia's Alaska Colony) has made her a rather controversial figure at home, but the New Deal Coalition's unbreakable control on the country's Legislative apparatus and her position as the incumbent head of state has allowed her to maintain an unbroken, if somewhat tomultuous, hold on power.
Name: Dr. Charlotte Jane Clariston, J.D.
Date of Birth: February 12th, 1920 (42 Years Old)
Place of Birth: Richmond, Virginia, United States (then the Confederate States of America)
Nationality: American (all C.S. citizens having been retroactively granted Jus Soli U.S. citizenship following the re-annexation of the Confederacy by the Union in 1938)
Alma Mater: Duke University
Occupations / Positions:
- 33rd President of the United States [1959 - Present]
- Former U.S. Congresswoman, 7th District, Richmond, Commonwealth of Virginia (Democrat) [1944-1948]
- Former Secretary of State, Roosevelt Administration [1948-1952]
- Former Vice President, Kennedy Adminisration [1952-1958]
- Former Chairwoman of the Democratic Party [1952-1958]
Political Party: none
- Formerly: Democratic Party
- English (Native)
Race: Caucasian (primarily German descent)
Height: 157.5 cm (5'2" in Imperial notation)
Weight: 54kg (120 lbs in Imperial notation)
Eye Color: Grey
Hair Color: Blonde
Bra Size: 75C (34C in Imperial notation)
Charlotte was born in the Confederate States of America, the eldest child of a prominent Southern banking family. As a member of the C.S.A.'s "New Rich" moneyed aristocracy, she was raised an Anglophile and spoke with a prominent Old Virginia accent. As she would put it later in life, she "abhorred coffee in favor of tea and put a U in 'Color'". The Great War (see: http://ruffles.wikia.com/wiki/United_States_of_America_(Napoleon%27s_Legacy_Universe)#Recent_History for details) badly damaged the C.S.A. economically and diplomatically, putting many out of work and sending inflation running rampant. The Clariston family, however, remained quite well off, profiting from the South's vital Cotton Trade to the British Empire. She was widely regarded as one of the most desirable suitors in Richmond, if not Virginia. Although her family was not the wealthiest, she was of "impeccable" upbringing and quite beautiful.
Charlotte chose to pursue a career in Law and Politics rather than finance, leaving the family banking business to her younger brother, Roderick. This deeply upset her father - Charles Joseph Clariston - and caused a rift in the family which would never recover. The Great Depression hit the family very hard, leading to the collapse of Clariston's banking empire and the eventual suicide of both Charlotte's father as well as her brother. This event galvanized Clariston into taking an active role in politics, and she was elected to the Virginia General Assembly in 1933, around the same time Franklin D. Roosevelt would become President of the United States. There, she worked to lessen the C.S.A.'s dependency upon trade with England and pushed greater equality in the nation's highly stratified society.
In 1938, Clariston voted for the so-called "Reunion" with the United States (i.e. the re-absorbtion of the Confederate States into the U.S.A.). She gave her first major speech on that day, addressing the General Assembly. Her words were broadcast across both of the Americas, plunging her for the first time into the national political spotlight. Franklin D. Roosevelt would later credit her as being instrumental in the peaceful success of the Reunion.
One year after once again becoming part of the United States, all Confederate citizens were retroactively granted Jus Soli citizenship in the U.S.A., making them the same as any other natural-born U.S. Citizen. This allowed Clariston - at Roosevelt's behest - to become involved in American national politics, where she quickly proved her worth as a campaign organizer and populist orator. She became the first representative for Virginia's 7th District in the United States Congress, where - in a controversial and surprise move - she was appointed to the position of Majority Whip for Roosevelt's New Deal Coalition despite having almost no experience.
Secretary of StateEdit
She would, however, serve only a single Congressional term. When Roosevelt's Secretary of State, Cordell Hull, resigned due to failing health, Roosevelt surprised the entire U.S. Government by appointing the little-experienced Clariston to replace him.
During her time in office, Clariston established many new trade agreements with Europe to cement the U.S.A.'s position as the Western World's primary supplier of oil and heavy industrial materials. She also masterminded the Treaty of London which ended the Anglo-American War and transferred almost the entire British Empire to American sovereignty. Integrating these vast overseas holdings into the U.S. economy and government became the responsibility of Charlotte and Secretary of the Interior Harold LeClaire Ickes. An able administrator and organizer, Clariston tackled the daunting project with unparalleled zeal and success.
Sometime during her tenure as Secretary of State, her and Mr. Roosevelt began a secret affair which continued for the remainder of the Roosevelt presidency.
Her greatest achievement during this time was masterminding an alliance between the United States and the Empire of Japan, in order to counter Russian influence in East Asia and to prevent the Tsar from completely taking over vulnerable and divided China. This treaty - regarded as one of the greatest diplomatic successes of the Roosevelt administration - proved her worth as a political figure and leader. As a result of her efforts, an expeditionary force of more than 100,000 American soldiers would arrive in China to support the Japanese in their war against Russia.
Charlotte quickly became a national symbol for Women's Rights and the success of Southern Reintegration into the U.S. at large.
In 1952, Roosevelt announced he would not be seeking re-election and endorsed his Vice President, Joseph P. Kennedy, to succeed him. Charlotte once again became active in the Democratic Party and was elected its Chairwoman... thus, when Kennedy became the 32nd Preisdent of the United States, this made her Vice President. She served for the duration of the Kennedy administration primarily in the House of Representatives, securing and strengthening the New Deal Coalition's solid Legislative majoriy.
In 1957, shortly after his reelection, Joseph P. Kennedy was badly injured in a plane crash while touring American-occupied Canada. Foul play was suspected and, against Charlotte's protestations, the U.S. government cracked down on its northern territories, re-instituting Marshal Law throughout all of Canada save Québec (which had been granted Statehood in Roosevelt's last act as President). Kennedy resigned soon after (in 1959) due to his injuries, expressing his wish that his younger brother - Senator John F. Kennedy - would take over leadership of the Democratic Party.
As a result of Joseph's resignation, Charlotte became the 33rd President of the United States, a position which she continues to hold by 1962.
Charlotte - 40 years old, unmarried and with only a brief political career - was sworn in as President of the United States in January of 1960 after having served as Acting President for a period of approximately 5 months. The first woman and one of the few unmarried persons to ever hold the office, Charlotte was also the youngest person to be appointed to the position. A staunch reformer, she almost immediately began to continue and expand the New Deal policies of her predecessors. Her bills increased gender equality, promoted marriage to strengthen the United States' dwindling population growth, and strongly increased the availability of higher education to her fellow citizens.
Controversially, however, Charlotte continued Joseph P. Kennedy's increasingly upopular so-called "Winter War": the invasion of Russian Alaska. Her actions expanded the U.S. military considerably, increasing the budget to approximately 12% of the country's Gross Domestic Product and expanding the pool for the Selective Service Draft. As of 1961, there are approximately half-a-million U.S. soldiers committed to ground actions alone in the Alaska Campaign, primarily in the form of the Army of Northern Virginia.
The Clariston CabinetEdit
President: Charlotte Jane Clariston
Vice President (Cabinet Head): Johnathan Fitzgerald Kennedy
Secretary of State: Richard Milhous Nixon
Secretary of the Treasurey: John Bowden Connally, Jr.
Secretary of War: General of the Army (retired) Dwight David Eisenhower
Attorney General: Robert Francis Kennedy
Postmaster General: James Edward Day
Secretary of the Interior: Stewart Lee Udall
Secretary of Agriculture: Orville Othrop Freeman
Secretary of Commerce: Luther Hartwell Hodges, Jr.
Secretary of Labor: Arthur Joseph Goldberg
Characteristics, Habits, Appearance & Personal DetailsEdit
Charlotte is a mere 157cm tall (about 5'2"). One of her more striking features, apart from her height, is her grey eyes, which people who have met her often describe as being "like storm clouds". They have heavy, droopy lids with pronounced lashes, giving them a lazy, distracted appearance. Of course, Clariston is often preoccupied with her own thoughts - having a reputation for staring off into space and appearing completely inattentive while she is being spoken to, only to recall and recount the words in perfect detail afterwards.
Her hair is naturally blonde, long and semi-curly, though she often straightens it for public occasions. The bangs have a tendancy to fall down over her eyes, especially the left one, and she often brushes them aside or toys with them by habit when bored, stressed or distracted. She has full lips with a wide mouth, a narrow nose that is pointed at the tip and a rather squarish, strong jaw line with a high forehead. She is also notable for her pair of old-fashioned bronze wire-frame glasses, which she needs for reading and driving.
Her voice is often described as something along the lines of soft or quiet. She speaks with a somewhat northeastern-influenced but proper and very clearly enunciated General American accent in the manner of many newscasters and TV personalities (a famous example being Walter Cronkite). This would include characteristics such as: pronouncing 'June' as 'Joone', 'automobile' as 'oddomobeel', rendering a large number of vowel sounds as 'ah', and the modification of most 't' sounds (softening and altogether eliminating them or converting them into 'd'). She does not, however, generally commit the mergers common to American English (pin-pen, cot-caught, mary-marry-merry, etc.). However, this accent - as in most cases - is learned and artificial: her native speech pattern is an aristocratic-sounding, lilted coastal Georgian accent (the so-called "Georgia Peaches" accent) which she inherited from her parents, who came from the area around Savannah.
Few people since the onset of Clariston's career in U.S. politics have ever heard her speak in this manner (at least not in person), although recordings of her pro-Reunion speech to the Virginia Assembly during her time as a representative - before she underwent accent reduction training - are widely available / circulated and even studied in U.S. universities. However, her original speech patterns can still sometimes creep into the undertones of her voice in small degrees when she is tired, angered, excited or just generally emotional. Those who have heard her speak in this manner often draw comparisons to the 1939 Film "Gone With the Wind". Even so, she is capable of switching between the two forms of pronounciation more-or-less at will, and will occasionally adopt her original mode of speech when it is politically advantageous (i.e. when she is attempting to appeal to Southerners). Her round, proper newscaster's accent is often contrasted with the (equally artificial) clipped, sharp mid-atlantic accents of Franklin D. Roosevelt and J. Edgar Hoover.
Physically, she is considered quite attractive, her figure often being compared to that of Marilyn Monroe (although her face is not all that similar and her hair is longer & less curly - Monroe is also not naturally blonde). Charlotte is normally seen in public as well as private with a small straight walking stick, as someone might have carried around the turn of the 19th Century. Especially in public, she rests the cane in her left arm - either tucked under her shoulder or in the crook of her elbow - to give the impression that it is only an accessory, but it does serve a purpose. Her gait has a slight limp in the left leg from a horseback-riding accident in late 1933, shortly after her election to the Virginia General Assembly. This is not common knowledge, as she makes a conscious effort to mitigate it in public, and it does hinder her capacity for physical exertions. She runs every morning for exercise and enjoys swimming or Tennis when time permits. However, the condition causes her pain in her back and hip. On days when the ache is particularly accute, or when she has been on her feet for long periods of time, she will make use of her walking stick. When not exposed to public scrutiny, she also generally uses it for support while standing.
In terms of dress, she is known for her hatred of skirts and for her slick, closely-tailored black suits (which she wears with dress pants). She also habitually has rings on the third & fourth fingers of her left hand. The former is a family heirloom and serves as a personal reminder of her dedication to the economic welfare of the American people (although she originally wore it while attending Duke University to give the impression that she was married), while the pinkie ring is an old-fashioned way of indicating that she is single and uninterested in a relationship - a cultural practice from the Victorian era.
Clariston is unmarried and is not currently in a serious relationship, although she has had many partners throughout her life. Some of them have been quite high-profile, including former President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (who is 36 years her senior, and with whom she entertained a secret sexual liason until his retirement). Rumors of possible romantic involvement with Vice President John F. Kennedy - and to a lesser extent, his younger brother, Attorney General Robert Francis Kennedy - abound, especially among her detractors, but have never been aired in public. She considers her only serious relationship to have been with the late Francis Tarleton, a Great War veteran who was killed by U.S. soldiers during the Bonus March Massacre of 1932 (though the two had already separated by that point). According to her, her best friend is her pet Scottish Terrier, Ozymandias: given to her by President Roosevelt (who famously had a much-beloved Scottish Terrier of his own named Fala).