Mike Pence would actually be the perfect vice presidential pick for Donald Trump because he lacks the courage of his convictions and would absolutely not overshadow Donald Trump. He gives Trump the veneer of conservatism without anyone ever having to worry that he’d actually fight for those principles.
I very much wanted Mike Pence to run for President in 2012, but he would not do it. Pence has time and time again shied away from any fight in which he was not sure of the outcome before going into it. He didn’t run for the Senate because the field wasn’t cleared. He didn’t run for President because the field wasn’t cleared.
Since he got in the House of Representatives, the one thing Pence ran for that he was not assured of was Minority Leader and he did a terrible job campaigning for it, losing to John Boehner 168-27. But then he got House Republican Conference Chairman and faded from the fights over conservative convictions.
Once elected Governor of Indiana, Pence decided to fight the religious liberty battle, but once the legislation was passed, Pence scrambled to reverse himself and angered all sides in the process. Christian evangelicals, in particular, were disheartened that Pence threw them under the bus. The irony is that, as Trump’s vice presidential pick, some of those evangelicals most critical of Pence at the time will now come out and say how awesome he is. But during that fight there was real bitterness in the evangelical community that Pence clearly did not have the courage of his convictions. When the national criticism from the gay mafia and press stormed into Indiana, Pence folded like a cheap suit.
Then, most recently, Pence gave the most milquetoast endorsement of Ted Cruz at a time where Republicans nationally and across the political spectrum were clamoring for Pence to exercise leadership and oppose Trump. Pence gave the lamest endorsement of a Presidential candidate ever and probably did more harm to Cruz than good.
Now he finds himself at the top of the list for Trump. He checks all the boxes.
- He is perceived as a conservative, but won’t actually fight for conservatism.
- He is perceived as an evangelical, but won’t actually fight for evangelicals.
- He is perceived as a successful Governor, but most likely cannot even win re-election.
He is just the perfect fit. Pence, of course, despite lacking the courage of his convictions. He knows winning re-election in Indiana is going to be tough and victory is not assured. Pence, since 2006, has never liked a fight where victory was not assured. So now he will sign on to a campaign he knows is going to lose, but know that it sets himself up perfectly to be the nominee in 2020.
Conservatives will need to make sure that does not happen if Pence does take the veep slot. No one who accepts Trump’s offer has the judgment to be President.
Pence would be like James Comey who claims the FBI just calls balls and strikes, wants the law upheld, but will never actually do the right thing when the headwinds are too strong.