- "So, if I have to shake hands with the Devil in order to do the Lord's work then so be it."
- ―Robert Kinsey[src]
Robert Kinsey was a United States politician, serving as Vice President to Henry Hayes until his forced resignation in 2004. During his career, he fiercely opposed the Stargate Program and was part of multiple unsuccessful efforts to shut it down.
Kinsey was a Senator and the chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, which controlled the Stargate Program's budget. He successfully argued that the program should be shut down, citing the colossal waste of money and the threat to Earth it represented. Upon meeting SG-1 and learning of their reports, Kinsey refused to change his mind, instead ordering that the Program be shut down for good while naively insisting that the U.S. military would defeat the Goa'uld and that God was with them. (SG1: "Politics")
However, the program was restarted after his plan to defeat Apophis's motherships threatening Earth failed while SG-1—having disobeyed orders and left Earth to check a Gate address that Dr. Daniel Jackson had acquired during a brief visit to an alternate reality—successfully destroyed both of them. With this proof of the program's importance, the President overruled his decision, something the President had previously considered to be political suicide. (SG1: "Within the Serpent's Grasp", "The Serpent's Lair", "Disclosure")
At first, Kinsey appeared to simply be a short-sighted politician pursuing his agenda. However, his interest in the Stargate went much deeper than that. In 2000, Colonel Jack O'Neill discovered that Kinsey was the politician protecting the rogue NID agents that had been causing trouble for Stargate Command, and that he was tied to various corporate and business interests hoping to use the Stargate for financial gain first, and to defend Earth as a secondary consideration. As a result of his actions, Major General George S. Hammond was briefly forced to retire and the SGC placed under the command of Major General Henry Bauer, who placed the organization in a more aggressive stance. However, O'Neill, collaborating with Harold Maybourne, managed to acquire incriminating evidence of Kinsey's ties to the NID and his off-the-books funding. He blackmailed the Senator into allowing Hammond to take control of the program once again or the evidence would go public. (SG1: "Chain Reaction")
Despite this setback, Kinsey tried several more times to take control of the Stargate program. In 2001, he nearly succeeded in pushing Stargate Command into a dangerous alliance with the Aschen, despite the SGC having received a message from the future instructing them not to visit the Aschen homeworld; Kinsey even openly speculated that the message was only sent because O'Neill didn't want Kinsey to be the one to make the deal that would have saved Earth. In an alternate timeline, where the alliance was made, Kinsey became President of the United States using his political collateral, but the same deal saw the Ascehn sterilize ninety percent of Earth before the timeline was undone. (SG1: "2010", "2001")
Kinsey would later help Agent Malcolm Barrett take down the rogue NID elements. In an attempt to stop his cooperation, Agent Mark Devlin tried to assassinate him using the Mimetic imaging device to pose as Colonel Jack O'Neill. Kinsey survived the attempt and Devlin tried again this time impersonating Major Paul Davis but was stopped by Barrett and Major Samantha Carter. After he recovered, he gave a speech exonerating O'Neill and announcing his intention to run for the President of the United States. After the speech, he told O'Neill that the Colonel had just won him the election. (SG1: "Smoke and Mirrors")
Later, he became chairman of the Senate Intelligence Oversight Committee, which placed him in a position of direct control over the NID. Shortly before, knowing he was about to be moved to this post, he tried to place the Stargate into the NID's hands instead of the United States Air Force. He attempted to manipulate the other nations to whom The Pentagon disclosed the Stargate into handing control of the Stargate into NID hands, citing various dangers to Earth Stargate Command caused. However, Major General George S. Hammond countered that the SGC has made allies, such as the Asgard, going so far as to contact Thor, Supreme Commander of the Asgard fleet for assistance. During his brief appearance at the SGC, Thor made it clear to Kinsey, in front of all the foreign representatives, that he was not on a name-only basis with him, and asked Kinsey to refer to him by both name and rank. Thor's presence convinced the other nations to place the SGC in Hammond's hands with Kinsey grudgingly acknowledging that Hammond's trump card had been "well played". (SG1: "Disclosure")
A short time later, he was inaugurated as Vice President of the United States of America, a position of power that he hoped would give him more control over the Stargate. He tried to convince President Henry Hayes to remove the current leadership at Stargate Command with the help of Richard Woolsey, who turned on him when he became aware of his connection to The Trust. Woolsey received a copy of the evidence of his duplicity, which O'Neill and Maybourne had taken in 2000, from Major General George S. Hammond and handed it over to the President. (SG1: "Inauguration")
Following his election, Kinsey attempted to take point in negotiations with the space-faring group known as the Pact, who were interested in an alliance with Earth where they would provide ships in exchange for Earth helping them deal with crop production problems. However, when it turned out that the Pact were an unwitting pawn of the Aschen seeking revenge, Kinsey was forced to settle for making the humanitarian gesture of helping the remaining Pact settle on a suitable planet after their ships were badly damaged in a fight with the Aschen. (Stargate SG-1: Relativity)
His true colors showed at the beginning of Anubis' attack, when he frantically attempted to force Dr. Elizabeth Weir, the newly-appointed head of Stargate Command who Kinsey had believed would be more willing to agree with his methods and motivations, as opposed to Hammond's more benevolent and compassionate view regarding others in the crisis, to get rid of SG-1. When he was not allowed to escape to the Alpha Site by Anubis dialing in, he attempted to take over command of the SGC. However, he was fired by President Hayes, who implied that he would have probably done far worse to Kinsey than that, as he also said that he (thanks to Woolsey) has "enough evidence to have [him] shot." (SG1: "Lost City, Part 1", "Lost City, Part 2")
Less than a year later, he offered to help Brigadier General Jack O'Neill take down The Trust in what he presented as a display of patriotism. O'Neill, made cynical by years of interaction with senator Kinsey, simply commented that "They kicked you when you were down and now you want revenge". However, the Trust had already been taken over by the Goa'uld, who then captured Kinsey and turned him into a host and sent him to meet with Russian General Miraslov Kiselev, supposedly to implant him with a symbiote, when in actuality, Kiselev was already compromised. This act caused the Russian government to suspect that the Goa'uld had compromised the American administration, and that nearly pushed Earth to the brink of nuclear war. Dr. Daniel Jackson deduced the Goa'uld's real motive was to take control of the Antarctic outpost. O'Neill was ordered to take Kinsey aboard the Prometheus when Russian security tried to arrest him. The Goa'uld was able to escape and ring on board the Trust Al'kesh that the Prometheus would destroy at the end of the crisis. Before its destruction, he was able to get his hands on a Kara kesh with Asgard beaming device, but as there has been no sign of Kinsey since these events, it is possible that he failed to use the device before his ship was destroyed, although this has never been confirmed. (SG1: "Full Alert")
- In an alternate timeline, Robert Kinsey was President in 2010 and made a speech for the ten year anniversary of meeting the Aschen, believing himself to be personally responsible for forming the alliance in the first place. (SG1: "2010")
- In another alternate timeline accidentally created by SG-1, Robert Kinsey was President in 2005 and was unamused upon hearing that the Secretary of the Interior Henry Hayes was supposed to be President in the proper timeline. (SG1: "Moebius, Part 1")
Kinsey had a wife, three children, seven grandchildren, various nieces and nephews, as well as a dog named Oscar. He was apparently particularly fond of the dog (its name was the password to the computer where he kept documentation of his illegal activities).
Kinsey is typically portrayed as operating on an 'Earth first' policy, believing that Hammond and SG-1's philosophy of using Earth's resources to help planets in need is foolish, preferring that the Stargate be used to acquire alien technology and secure Earth's position regardless of what fate befalls other planets; on one occasion when he briefly gained control over the program, he arranged for the test of a weapon capable of destroying an entire planet simply to see if it worked, resulting in Earth being endangered when the resulting radiation threatened to return to Earth through the still-open Stargate.
Despite being a well-spoken politician, implying some level of charisma, Kinsey lacks the ability to inspire any loyalty thanks to his complete lack of interpersonal skills. On occasion, when managing to install his own puppets within positions of authority, he proceeds to act as though he owns them, and that they will find in his favor despite their own outlooks; such examples include President Henry Hayes and Dr. Elizabeth Weir. Once Hayes was inaugurated, Kinsey almost immediately began pushing to clean house at the SGC, becoming antagonistic when Hayes insisted on hearing all the facts. Hayes later admitted to Hammond that choosing Kinsey as his running mate was motivated purely by the latter's political pull and financial contributions to the campaign. He personally pushed Hayes to have Weir put in charge of the SGC, but when she didn't take his side during SG-1's briefing regarding the impending attack on Earth by Anubis, he outright insulted her. (SG1: "Lost City, Part 1") Even Richard Woolsey, who at first seemed to be Kinsey's right-hand man with similar goals to dismantle the SGC, quickly turned on him after seeing Kinsey's true agenda. (SG1: "Inauguration")
He may have been a draft-dodger in some form or other; he once claimed that "illness robbed me of the chance ever to serve in this country's military." (SG1: "Politics") This excuse is commonly presented by contemporary politicians to explain how they avoided being drafted during the Vietnam War (in reality, their social status and parentage usually have much more to do with it, though of course this is not always the case).
Kinsey often referred to "God and Country", "the Lord's work", and other phrases suggesting his possibly being religious, as well as perhaps a believer in a "manifest destiny" of the American people, although such evocative phrases are a common part of many politicians' verbal arsenal, whatever their private feelings.
- Whether accidentally or intentionally, Kinsey keeps pronouncing Goa'uld as "goo-auld".
- According to his actor Ronny Cox, Kinsey is most likely an evangelical Christian and a member of the Republican Party.
Behind the scenesEdit
- Some of Kinsey's most prominent episodes are "Politics", "Disclosure" and "Inauguration", making him the only recurring character to appeared in three clip shows. Of the main characters, only Major General George S. Hammond appeared in more of them.