Year YC111 - December
The Gallente Presidential elections took place on the first day of December with all votes from participating district checked and tallied by the day after the poll. The Federal Elections Commission was able to declare Jacus Roden the outright winner as he had secured a majority of 58.7% of all votes cast. This convincing majority followed a broad-based campaign including pledges to root out corruption in government, improve strained relations with the Minmatar Republic, reform the Federation Navy, and include capsuleers more closely in the war effort. His most prominent, and perhaps controversial, campaign pledge had been his promise to recover Caldari Prime. While the means by which this would be achieved was an open question, the pledge had played well with a Federation population considering the Luminaire situation to be an "open wound." His comfortable majority also indicated that playing to concerns over corruption and military leadership had been a successful strategy.
Roden's closest challenger for the presidency was Governor Celes Aguard, polling 31.2% of the vote, and she graciously conceded defeat in a personal transmission to Jacus Roden, pledging her support for "all policies of the Presidency that uphold the interests of the entire Federation." This last was probably a coded reference to the frontier worlds occupied by the Caldari State and denied the vote - a factor that may well have cost her many votes. Senator Vilard Garioss, polling only 8.8% of the vote, chose to concede in a brief public statement. It was announced that President-elect Roden would assume office at his inauguration before the Gallente Senate in the New Year.
Reactions to the Election
Reactions to the election of Jacus Roden from across New Eden were broadly positive, if naturally wary in the case of the Caldari State. State Executor Tibus Heth emphasized that 'any attempt to intrude upon the sovereign territory of the Caldari State will be met with an immediate and overwhelming response.' This was seen as a warning that Roden's campaign promises regarding recovery of Caldari Prime and the occupied Gallente systems. Certainly, Heth's use of the term 'sovereign territory' indicated very clearly the Caldari attitude to both Caldari Prime and the territories they had gained in the State Protectorate offensive.
The Minmatar Republic greeted the election result with optimism and Sanmatar Maleatu Shakor stated that he looked forward to a "productive relationship" with President-elect Roden. A little more surprisingly, the Amarr Empire chose to formally congratulate Jacus Roden, while at the same time making a blistering attack on the policies of the outgoing President Foiritan. Experienced observers of Amarr diplomacy interpreted the Amarr statement as a remarkably positive welcome for the new president.
In the Caldari State, Sukuuvestaa Corporation admitted that many of its facilities in the Essence and Verge Vendor regions had been attacked. The megacorp blamed 'Gallente terrorists' and announcied an increase in defense spending but a deadly explosion at a Lai Dai Corporation ammunition factory in Nourvukaiken followed within days. The Caldari Business Tribunal launched an inquiry into the attacks on Sukuuvestaa assets and soon also took in the assaults that Lai Dai had been suffering. As yet another attack took place, this time a cybernetic assault on a Caldari scientist working for Lai Dai, the involvement of the CBT in matters suggested an internal Caldari State problem rather than Gallente terrorism. Sure enough, the CBT called representatives of both the Lai Dai and Sukuuvestaa corporations to a closed hearing and ultimately censured the two megacorporation for use of 'unlawful anti-competitive measures' ? evidently campaigns of espionage and sabotage carried out by both corporations on each other's holdings.
The misfortunes of the Caldari corporations were not limited to internecine warfare by any means, and the Wiyrkomi Corporation fell prey to an upsurge of Guristas activity in the Okunsa constellation when two of their freighters were attacked by the pirate group in the Mara system. The Lai Dai made off with an estimated 12bn ISK in electronic components while leaving behind them two gutted and useless wrecks.
Perhaps more seriously, a severe accident at a CBD Corporation asteroid mine in Annaro killed over 30 miners and trapped 200 more. With echoes of the earlier Kaunokka incident, the incident seemed to reveal that CBD had not put its house in order after all. CBD subsidiary Deep Core Mining Inc. had the specialized rescue teams that would be required to free the trapped miners at its disposal but expressed deep reluctance to commit a team to the effort. An unusual development was an offer by Amarr mining corporation Ducia Foundry to send a rescue team including a number of slaves. As this would be against Caldari anti-slavery laws it appeared very unlikely that the offer would be taken up.
With the trapped Annaro miners estimated to have a little less than six days of breathable air by the last day of the month, the year YC111, already replete with tragedy seemed to be closing on a suitably grim note.