(and largest city)
|Governor-General:||Henry Roy (2105)|
|President:||Calvin Watson (2105)|
|Vice President:||Samantha Palmer (2105)|
|Lower House||House of Representatives|
|Judiciary:||Supreme Court of the|
United States of Tharsis
|Established:||July 4th, 2105 (5 years ago)|
|Currency:||United States Dollar ($) (USD)|
|Population:||1.05 million (2110)|
|Change||+150 thousand (2100)|
|Regional Languages:||Spanish, French, pidgins, etc.|
The United States of Tharsis, commonly known as Tharsis or the UST, Is an extraplanetary holding of the United States of America located on Mars. The core of the country is located on the Tharsis Bulge, a large volcanic plateau located in Mars' Northern Hemisphere, although three of the country's states, sometimes called the 'Rover States' are located on other regions of Mars along the planned coastline. The capital of the country if Viking City, located on Sacra Mensa near the center of the country. With a population of 1.05 million people, Tharsis is the most populous extraplanetary holding on Mars, 150,000 ahead of the Argyre Republic.
The United States has the longest history on Mars. It was the first country to both orbit and land on the planet using probes, as well as the first to send rovers to the planet. During the Ares program, American astronaut Anthony Cassada served as the commander for Ares 1, and American astronauts ended up flying on every Ares mission. The United States was also the first to begin the large-scale colonization and terraforming of Mars, landing the first prefabricated facilities in the Kasei Valley in 2053. After the signing of the Ares Concordat, Americans quickly became the single-largest nationality of colonists between 2053 and 2062. The Fossil Crisis lead to the sharp decline of colonists arriving on Mars for most of the 2060s, and in no way was Tharsis unaffected. The lack of colonists flooding onto the planet resulted in Mars' fledgling planetary economy falling into a depression, as businesses set up to help new arrivals adapt to life on Mars failed to receive their usual income. Tharsis was particularly badly hit by this, but the work of Governor-General (and former Tharsistown Commander) Bailey Thompson to switch the colonial economy toward the emerging industries of Martian natural resource extraction and agriculture significantly helped in easing the woes of the depression.
Following the end of the Fossil Crisis and the Martian Depression in the early-2070s, Tharsis once again thriving. The Governor-Generalship of Jacob Fujio (2070-2077) saw immigration to Tharsis both from Earth and from other Martian colonies increase by nearly 25%, increasing the total population by nearly 50,000 over the entire decade. As the population increased, political issues quickly began to form in the colonies. Being that Tharsis were technically less than even US territories back on Earth, they received no representation in the Federal Government back on Earth, apart from the Governor-General, who was appointed by the President. Rudimentary civilian governments began to appear in the late 2080s and early 2090s, most notably the Viking Congress in 2091. The Viking Congress was the meeting of 120 political leaders from all over the Tharian colonies, convening in protest of the appointment of Governor-General Carlos Berrocal (2091-2093) and the lack of colonial representation both within their own rudimentary government and within the American federal government.
The administrations of Presidents Avery (2092-2096) and Chavez (2096-2104) saw great strides be made in Tharian colonial representation. The Martian Colonial Representation Act of 2095 saw the Tharian colonies receive the ability to elect their own representatives to the United States Congress, who would first be elected in the 2096 election. Under President Chavez, the Martian Colonial Administration Act (MCAA) and subsequent Martian Colonial Government Directive 1 (MCGD1) in 2103 ordered the creation of a Tharian government to act on the colonies behalf, as well as an order for that government to begin the drafting of a constitution. The Viking Conference in mid 2104 saw the drafting and signing of the Tharian Constitution, mostly by the same statesman who participated in the Viking Congress in the 2090s as well as some federal government officials from Earth. Finally, on Independence Day 2105 the United States of Tharsis was officially proclaimed, the first nation to exist on Mars or on any other planet.
The United States Census Bureau (and later the Tharian Census Bureau) conduct censuses every ten years, with the first being held in 2060. The 2110 Tharian Census gives the total population of the United States of Tharsis to be 1.05 million. The total population has increased by 310,000 since 2100 and by 1 million since 2060. The United States of Tharsis is the most populous state on Mars, ahead of the Argyre Republic by 150,000. Population is expected to continue to increase over the rest of the 22nd century, with a population of between 3 and 5 million in 2200.
As of 2110, the most populous states in the UST are Viking (216,000) and Kasei (171,000), while the least populous are the Rover States, totaling at 172,600. The three territories of Tharsis have a combined population of 108,100. Any territory needs a population of 50,000 as a prerequisite for statehood. One territory, Tempe, has surpassed the population requirement in 2108 and is currently in the process of becoming a state.
The Tharian Constitution gives the United States of Tharsis no official language. That said, over 97% of the population is fluent in any of the three major languages spoken in the United States on Earth: English, Spanish, and French. Since the 2090s, a form of English-Spanish pidgin language (commonly referred to as "Tharian Spanglish") has arisen within Tharsis' larger settlements. Notable minority languages include Korean, Arabic, and German.
The Tharian Declaration of Human Rights makes Tharsis a secular country, guaranteeing religious freedom to all citizens. The largest religions in the country are Christianity (38.2%), Islam (5.2%), and Judaism (3.8%). 49.7% of the country identifies as unaffiliated or irreligious, the largest percentage on Mars.
Tharian citizens seem to have a much more positive reception to cybernetics than their counterparts on Earth. Of Tharsis' 1.05 million residents, 43.9% (approximately 467,000 individuals) have cybernetic modifications. Of this, 27.9% have 1-5 modifications, 12.3% have 6-10 modifications, and 3.7% have more than 10 modifications and are classified as 'heavily-modded'.
The Tharian Federal Government, despite being quite young itself, is technically the oldest organized government on Mars. It exists as a representative democracy. All government actions are monitored by a system of checks-and-balances where no single governmental branch has total power over the others. All formal federal laws and actions are also defined by the Tharian Constitution, which is itself derived from the United States Constitution. All citizens are subject to three tiers of government: the Federal government, the state government, and the distract (local) government.
The Tharian government can be divided into three branches:
- Executive: Office of the Governor-General of Tharsis, Tharian President, and Cabinet. Can veto legislative bills before they become laws, appoint members of Cabinet (subject to Senate approval) and other officers, who administer and enforce federal laws and policies.
- Legislative: Made up of the Tharian Senate (upper house) and Tharian House of Representatives (lower house). Can propose laws, declare war & approve treaties, impeach members of government, and finalize the federal budget.
- Judicial: Consists of the Tharian Supreme Court and lower federal courts. Judges appointed by president (with Senate approval). Has ability to interpret Constitution and find laws in violation of said constitution.
The Tharian President is directly elected by the populace for a four-year term, which is renewable once. While the President is the official head-of-government, they share the head-of-state duties with the Governor-General. The Governor-General of Tharsis is an appointed position by the President of the United States on Earth, but the selection is at the request of the Tharian President. The term length is usually "at the President's request", although is usually 4-8 years. The Governor-General acts mainly as a representative of the United States Federal Government to the United States of Tharsis, as well as an advisor to the Tharian President.
The Tharian House of Representatives is currently made up of 64 members, which once representative for every 15,000 citizens on average, while each territory gets one representative regardless of population. The Tharian Senate is comprised of 24 Senators, which each State getting two seats, while territories only get one. Representatives serve a two-year term which is renewable three times, while Senators serve for a six-year term which is renewable once.
The Tharian Supreme Court is made up of eleven justices which are appointed by the Tharian President, while being subject to Senate approval. They serve for life, unless the judge retires.
Most of Tharsis' political parties are derived from those within the United States back on Earth. The major political parties in the United States of Tharsis are as follows:
|Party||Formation||Color||Number of Representatives||Number of Senators||Terraforming
|Tharian NDP||July 9, 2054||15||8||Pro|
|Tharian Conservatives||January 4, 2054||8||4||Neutral|
|Tharian Technocratic Party||September 13, 2054||29||7||Pro|
|Tharian Headway||May 9, 2076||8||3 (1)||Anti|
|Tharian Interest Party||June 30, 2088||4||2||Pro|
|*Bold denotes parties or individual congressmen who are part of the majority in the House or Senate|
The current governing coalition within that Tharian Congress is between the Tharian Technocratic Party and Tharian NDP, as well as one 'defective' Headway senator (Collin Mizuhito). The opposition is made up of the Conservatives, along with Headway. While officially neutral, the Tharian Interest Party has aligned themselves unofficially with the Conservatives.
Tharsis' degree of political autonomy from the United States of America has always been an issue within the country, going back to even before it's founding. The Martian Colonial Administration Act of 2103 says that the American colonies on Mars are "extraplanetary commonwealths who are to be self-governing under a constitution and representative government."
In practice, the United States of Tharsis operates similarly to a freely-associated state of the United States of America. The UST receives the freedom to elect and manage their own government, as well as freedom in areas such as foreign affairs. However, the USA gives Tharsis integration into the American economy, as well as access to things like American social and economic services, such as healthcare and funding/grants.