After having convinced himself that it was God’s will to run for the presidency in 2024, former Vice President Mike Pence has made a total mockery of himself.
The Vice President to a man whom the Republican Party’s base has a cultish love affair with, Pence had a hard falling out with his former boss, Donald Trump. The moment that Pence turned on President Trump, though, was the moment his political career was over.
Of course, Pence’s turn away from Trump was over a legitimate disagreement as to how to handle the election defeat of Donald Trump in 2020. During that disagreement, it is believed that rioters who broke into Capitol Hill, where Pence was leading the election certification on January 6, were planning to kidnap and possibly kill Pence for not overturning the 2020 Election results.
By the way, Pence’s wife and children were in attendance in the Capitol that day and would have also been targeted.
Not a Normal Human
Even that, though, is insufficient to justify what Pence has been doing since running for President. After all, Pence did not break with Trump after his life was threatened.
That would have been an entirely understandable—even human—reaction that many voters could at least sympathize with. Pence has continued trying to carry water for his old boss yet all the while trying to distance himself. It’s the mother of all balancing acts and the naturally stiff Pence is utterly incapable of pulling it off.
What’s more, Pence is totally unbelievable in his newfound anti-Trump position in the GOP Primary.
First, there are many other candidates running against Trump who do the “Never Trump” routine much better.
Second, everyone remembers the abject obsequiousness that Pence had toward the forty-fifth president right up until the moment of January 6. Many voters—notably on the Right—view that as disingenuous.
Other voters, who lean to the Left, view it as opportunistic. Neither group buys Pence’s “Aw shucks!” shtick.
What Does Pence Stand For (Other Than More War)?
And Pence has not really made many policy pronouncements explaining why he’d be any better—much less different—than his old boss. The one area that Pence has consistently differentiated himself by was in the arena of foreign policy.
Pence has made it abundantly clear that he cares more about the plight of Ukrainians than he does the plight of ordinary Americans. He also seems to be obsessed with being a wartime president, which turns many people in both parties off.
Beyond that, Mike Pence was initially nominated as Vice Presidential running-mate in 2016 by Donald Trump because he was so obsequious. What’s more, Pence’s political career by 2015 was at an end. He had already been in the United States House of Representatives and was serving in his final term as governor of Indiana.
While he was governor of the Hoosier State, as Trump’s unlikely campaign was taking shape, Pence had become a source of severe controversy due to his “Religious Freedom Restoration Act” (RFRA).
The media had described the RFRA as a backdoor attempt to make gay people second-class citizens. Pence, however, argued that the RFRA was an attempt by him to protect the religious freedoms of people who were being bullied by the political activist wing of the gay community.
Regardless of one’s take on that now-forgotten controversy, the fact was that Pence’s political career was dead in the water. That is, until Trump came along. Sensing that Pence could pull in the vital Evangelical vote, Trump began courting Pence.
Mike Pence was everything Trump was not: religious, quiet, and deeply conservative in both his bearing and beliefs. Plus, with Pence’s political woes from the RFRA, Trump believed that he’d have a pliant Vice President in Mike Pence. Mike Pence would be dependent on Trump for his political salvation. And that likely remains true today, which is why Pence is struggling in the polls as he runs for president.
No One Buys What Mike Pence Sells
And Pence performed as Trump’s sock puppet for almost every point in the Trump presidency—save for January 6.
No one buys his act now on the campaign trail. The Trump people hate him not only because he “betrayed” the forty-fifth president but also because he’s a rabid neoconservative who speaks in what I believe to be a bad George W. Bush impression.
Nikki Haley already has the neocon vote locked up. Meanwhile, the only real alternative to Trump in the GOP Primary is Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis. The “Never Trump” vote is already going to people like Chris Christie.
So, Pence has neither the base of support nor the credibility to garner greater support that he thinks he has. His presidential bid is a shambolic waste of time and money.
Mike Pence needs to drop out of the 2024 Presidential Race and retire quietly back home to Indiana.
A 19FortyFive Senior Editor and an energy analyst at the The-Pipeline, Brandon J. Weichert is a former Congressional staffer and geopolitical analyst who is a contributor at The Washington Times, as well as at the Asia Times. He is the author of Winning Space: How America Remains a Superpower (Republic Book Publishers), Biohacked: China’s Race to Control Life (Encounter Books), and The Shadow War: Iran’s Quest for Supremacy (July 23). Weichert occasionally serves as a Subject Matter Expert for various organizations, including the Department of Defense. He can be followed via Twitter @WeTheBrandon.
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