When former President Trump picked Mike Pence to be his running mate, he did so out of strategy and alliance building.
The idea was for Pence to represent the social conservative and religious base of the GOP, while Trump represented more of the business wing.
It worked to win the 2016 election, and Pence seemed reliable and hardworking at first. But he started to drift, eventually making false accusations against Trump of inciting the January 6 riots and becoming an anti-Trump figure.
Now Pence is out with more anti-Trump words, crowing at the former POTUS over who he invites to dinner.
Pence Pounces on Trump for Mar-a-Lago Dinner
Pence said that Trump has bad “judgment” and is “profoundly” wrong for having dinner with anti-Jewish rapper Ye (formerly known as Kanye West) and right wing provocateur and Holocaust denier Nick Fuentes.
The two enjoyed an invite to Mar-a-Lago last week to dine with the former President, with Trump reportedly saying Fuentes “gets him” and his strategy for winning the presidency once again.
Ye ran for President in the last cycle and suffers from bipolar. He has gone through a number of dramatic public transformations in his ideology and personality, most recently becoming a born-again Christian and adopting anti-Jewish narratives of the Black Hebrew Israelite (BHI) extremist movement.
For his part, Fuentes leads an online movement of right wing reactionaries he calls “groypers” and the America First PAC. It’s a group that wants to get Trump reelected and move the GOP to the far right and has previously enjoyed the company of Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia and Paul Gosar of Arizona in attendance.
Following the dinner Trump said he hadn’t even known who Fuentes was, but some are skeptical and others ask why his staff didn’t provide him better background on his guests prior to their arrival.
Pence, other Republicans issue rare rebuke of Trump over dinner with Fuentes and Ye – “Monday’s unusual deluge of criticism from Senate Republicans came five days after Trump’s dinner…” Several GOPers isn’t a DELUGE!! GOP is gutless by its omission. https://t.co/NKKrFKr0w3
— jsr72748 (@jsr72748) November 29, 2022
Pence never turned on Trump in office until the very end, but it’s clear that has now changed.
While he was in office, Pence wanted to maintain a middle course as a kind of enabler of the MAGA agenda who was still more “reasonable” and establishment in his behavior and dealmaking.
The problem for him was that it left him in an awkward middle position: pro-Trump but also pro-establishment, trying to play all sides.
The end result is that most people saw Pence for what he was: a fake.
Others like Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson say the dinner was also extremely “troubling.”
But America also has much bigger problems than a couple of crazy racists trying to get the attention of Trump. And Pence’s behavior clearly has some self-interest involved.
Forgettable Mike Pence. The knives he stabs Trump in the back can't even penetrate Trump's skin because he is a low energy individual, an annoyingly weak man. Good luck to him. Not! https://t.co/D16t98oVRk
— yesitsme (@yesitsm08368298) November 23, 2022
The Bottom Line
Pence has about as much chance of becoming POTUS as a random guy out of the phone book. His attempt to play the guilt by association game with Trump isn’t going to work.This article appeared in StatesmanPost and has been published here with permission.