President Cole, during the time of the OVA and the TV series, is the President of the United States.
In Read or Die, he is first seen trying to flee the White House and is confronted by Gennai Hiraga. He later has the United States attack the I-jin and is decidedly outmatched by their superior weaponry.
In ROD TV, Joseph Carpenter appears to be using President Cole for his own schemes; promised power when Joseph Carpenter achieves his objective, President Cole is instead blackmailed into giving it up to the British Empire.
Interestingly in the OVA during the aerial chase of Otto Lilienthal, a poster can be seen proclaiming:
- Animal protection week.
- President Harrison
- NO 1!!
- in the political world
- and the pet field.
- He's (sic) thinks about
- the pet
- and nature."
This leads some to believe the presidents in the OVA and TV series are different people. It is however equally possible that the president is simply named Harrison Cole or Cole Harrison.