Friday, July 15, 2016

Hoosier governor for VP – could Pence become Trump’s political savior?

It would be intriguing if Indiana Gov. Mike Pence truly were willing to give up his current post for the chance to be one seat away from the presidency in a potential Donald Trump administration.
PENCE: Will Trump 'train' take him for better ride?

For the Roll Call newspaper in Washington, D.C., reported Thursday that Trump will pick Pence as his running mate, although Trump later said he would postpone his announcement out of a sense of respect for those killed in a Bastille Day attack on Thursday in Nice, France.

NOT NEW JERSEY Gov. Chris Christie. Not one-time House Speaker Newt Gingrich of Georgia. Not even his daughter, Ivanka – whose name Trump has tossed into the rumor mill most likely to confound those people determined to influence his pick.

I have to admit the idea of Pence as the running mate makes some sort of sense – in a purely political logic kind of way. Even though I have to admit to seeing the humor in political columnist Ann Coulter saying the only reason Trump would say Pence now is so that when he really does name his choice, everybody will think to themselves “Thank God it’s not Mike Pence.”

But keep in mind there are those Republican types who are in with the GOP for social conservative reasons and they don’t find satisfaction in all of Trump’s anti-Mexican or anti-Arab talk or any of the other cheap rhetoric he has used to try to stir up dissent.

Because Trump is a wealthy Manhattanite who doesn’t show the same fear of, and bigotry toward, gay people that they do.

SOME GAY ACTIVIST types actually say Trump is a reasonable individual to do business with. He certainly hasn’t demonized them the way he has others.

So, in the sense that a vice presidential choice is meant to balance out a ticket, that is what Pence’s presence would do. It is why Pence spent the day Wednesday meeting with Pence while Democratic presidential challenger Hillary Clinton was in Springfield, Ill., claiming the mantel of Abraham Lincoln morality for herself.
GINGRICH: No political comeback for Newt?
For let’s not forget that Pence was the governor who signed off on the Religious Freedom Restoration Act – the measure that equated hostility toward gay people as being one’s Constitutional right to express and treated efforts to fight back against such bigotry as the real act of racism.

People could claim their religion as justification for their bigotry – which I always personally thought was a repulsive interpretation of religious belief.

BUT IT WAS written into Indiana law, and for a time last year it was Open Season on Hoosiers. The state was the ultimate butt of jokes – to the point where even Mississippi and Alabama had right to look down upon them.

As things stand, if Pence ran for re-election as governor, his support of that measure and willingness to sign it into law would have been a major issue to be used against him.

He would have faced countless questions about gay rights and the mood of the nation might well have turned against him, and the state that hasn’t had a Democrat as its governor for more than a decade could receive one now!

But if he goes on board with Trump, he will be appealing to that segment of the electorate who will view him as heroic. He could well be the guy who helps solidify Trump voter support amongst conservative ideologues – particularly those who think the whole “gay” issue is of crucial importance.

AS IN MEDDLING in someone else’s personal business ought to be a priority of government. But whatever! I’m sure some voters now hesitant about Trump will be swayed by Pence’s presence on the ballot.

Will Hillary make Mike Pence a moot point? 

It may be that Pence has a better chance of having a political future if he signs on the Trump camp and becomes the factor that boosts it to a victory over Hillary Clinton.

And if it turns out that the REAL majority of our society winds up deciding that the return of the Clintons to the White House is nowhere near as repulsive as the thought of the Trump brand being applied to the Oval Office, then what else did Pence really have to lose?

Other than campaigning unsuccessfully for re-election in places like South Bend, Terre Haute and Gary – the latter of which likely would have been extremely hostile toward him.


EDITOR'S NOTE: Mike Pence also has the political record that has tried to single out Chicago. Which probably ensures that the Trump camp has written off any chance of taking Illinois' Electoral College votes -- no matter what kind of cheap talk Trump himself spews.

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