When Donald Trump canceled his news conference to announce Mike Pence as his VP pick he effectively handed the terrorists a victory by demonstrating with his cowardice that, under his “leadership,” they can have a profound impact on our democratic processes. Although it may have been more ego than cowardice as he didn’t want to compete with the tragedy in Nice for attention from the press.
However, now that his selection of a running mate is official it is revealing to observe the throngs of conservatives who regard Pence as a brilliant choice and the salvation for a candidate that many on the far-right never trusted. The rush to praise Pence was immediate, celebratory, and nearly unanimous. Here are just a few of the accolades that have been pouring in since the choice was confirmed:
Paul Ryan, Speaker of the House: “Mike Pence comes from the heart of the conservative movement — and the heart of America. I can think of no better choice for our vice-presidential candidate.”
Matt Schlapp, chairman of the American Conservative Union: “This is a great day for conservatism and great news for conservatives.”
David Macintosh of the Club for Growth: “Mike Pence would be an outstanding Vice-President.”
Tea Party Patriots Citizens Fund Chairman Jenny Beth Martin: “Governor Mike Pence provides the opportunity to give GOP voters still undecided about Donald Trump a reason to unite and to vote for a more principled ticket.”
Brent Bozell, of the ultra-rightist Media Research Center: “Naming of Governor Mike Pence as his running mate is a homerun for Donald Trump.”
Penny Nance, president and CEO, Concerned Women for America: “This is an excellent choice by Donald Trump … will be a unifying factor and conservatives will be very supportive.”
Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the pro-life Susan B. Anthony List: “An affirmation of the pro-life commitments he has made and will rally the pro-life grassroots.”
Mark Meckler co-founder of Tea Party Patriots: “An excellent selection”
Ken Blackwell, former Ohio Secretary of State and Senior Fellow of the Family Research Council: Trump “gets an A-plus for his first presidential decision.”
Michael Reagan, son of President Reagan: “Pence is a good choice for VP.”
Laura Ingraham, Fox News contributor and right-wing radio talk show host: “Trump/Pence does have a nice ring to it!”
Mark R. Levin, Right-wing radio talk show host: “Pence is an excellent choice”
Dana Loesch, host at Glenn Beck’s TheBlaze and Special Advisor on Women’s Policy for the NRA: “IMO Pence as a VP pick is the best choice among the listed.”
If anyone thought that Mike Pence was a mainstream Republican who would be a moderating influence on the mercurial, hotheaded Trump, this parade of wingnut rapture should put an end to that delusion. Pence is an ultra-rightist who has a long record of supporting the most extreme conservative positions. He is a favorite of evangelicals and other social conservatives who oppose LGBT equality and a woman’s right to choose. He is among the science deniers who believe that climate change is a hoax. And he is a proponent of the hoax that cutting taxes for the wealthy will benefit the poor and middle-class.
There is, though, at least one notable skeptic of the Pence selection: Donald Trump. CNN’s Dana Bash is reporting today that Trump spent last night beseeching his aides for ways to get out of naming Pence. Apparently they couldn’t come up with a plausible escape route.
Perhaps Trump’s reticence stemmed from some of the serious disagreements on core policies that are certain to be brought up as the Trump/Pence campaign leaves the launching pad. For instance:
Calls to ban Muslims from entering the U.S. are offensive and unconstitutional.
— Governor Mike Pence (@GovPenceIN) December 8, 2015
Trade means jobs, but trade also means security. The time has come for all of us to urge the swift adoption of the Trans Pacific Partnership
— Governor Mike Pence (@GovPenceIN) September 8, 2014
It’s too late now, Donnie. You are stuck with each other. At least you have some consolation knowing that you have the approval of the Neanderthal wing of the Republican Party. The Trump/Pence ticket will likely have all the success of the group that shares its “TP” acronym: Tea Party. Good luck with that.
How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.