While the next presidential election in the USA isn’t until 2020, the “Smallville” TV series announced back in 2011 that Lex Luthor would be elected president this year… 2018.
In the final episode of the series (Finale – Part 2), which is set in 2011, we are projected into the near future, 2018 to be exact. Clark Kent (who has taken up the mantle of Superman) is engaged to Lois Lane, the two are about to get married when a bomb scare uptown has Clark dashing for the Daily Planet rooftop. On a TV broadcast, wearing a white suit with a black glove on one hand, Lex Luthor has just been elected the President of the United States.
It’s not uncommon for TV shows to show presidential elections on alternate years, probably to separate fiction from reality. Or perhaps the writers decided to set their big finale in 2018 as an homage to Superman’s 80th anniversary.
In the comic books, in 2001’s Adventures of Superman #581, Luthor announces that he is running for President. The presidential run continues as a back story for a while, including the strange selection of Pete Ross (Clark’s school buddy and husband of Lana Lang) in Superman #162. While Lex wins the election, his term of office comes to an abrupt end in the Superman/Batman series in “The World’s Finest” story arc (issues #1-6). Luthor learns of a giant Kryptonite meteor heading for Earth. In a strange leap of logic, Luthor blames Superman and offers a $1 billion dollar reward for whoever brings in this “enemy against humanity”. The story by Jeph Loeb, with art by Ed McGuinness and Dexter Vines, has the two heroes fighting against and with a gauntlet of their colleagues. This story was the basis for the 2009 animated movie “Superman/Batman: Public Enemies”, in which Lex Luthor is president.