Two words for Trump haters: Pres­i­dent Pence

The Hamilton Spectator - - OPINION -

This ap­peared in the News-Sen­tinel (Fort Wayne, Ind.):

Please stop try­ing to find ways to impeach Pres­i­dent Trump, pleads Bob Hep­burn of the Toronto Star: “As bad as Trump is, the United States could ac­tu­ally be in worse shape in the fu­ture if Mike Pence, his seem­ingly be­nign vice pres­i­dent, re­places him in the Oval Of­fice. In­deed, Pence could well turn out to be a com­plete dis­as­ter as pres­i­dent for lib­eral-minded Amer­i­cans. In sharp con­trast to Trump, the former In­di­ana gov­er­nor is a se­ri­ous politi­cian with ex­trem­ist pol­icy views that lib­er­als se­ri­ously don’t like.”

Of course, those of us on the politi­cal right might put it a dif­fer­ent way: “Go ahead and get rid of Don­ald Trump if you can. Then you’ll get the pres­i­dent who will re­ally drive you around the bend, and we’ll get more of our con­ser­va­tive agenda passed.”

As con­tro­versy swirls around the White House, Pence has seemed to walk a tightrope. One the one hand, he needs to be seen as en­thu­si­as­ti­cally sup­port­ing the pres­i­dent and his agenda. On the other hand, he has to be some­what above the fray.

“At the height of the con­tro­ver­sies en­velop­ing his boss,” USA Today re­ports, “the vice pres­i­dent is even build­ing his own politi­cal war chest, cre­at­ing a politi­cal ac­tion com­mit­tee to sup­port con­gres­sional can­di­dates, which will en­hance his al­ready-strong pop­u­lar­ity among Repub­li­cans.

The good news is that Pence is up to the task of stay­ing fo­cused and un­con­sumed by the crises of the day. When­ever it’s his turn to step up, he will be ready. Odds are, it will be in 2020 or 2024.

Democrats right now have one of the shal­low­est politi­cal benches in politi­cal his­tory. They’d bet­ter start de­vel­op­ing some ta­lent with pres­i­den­tial qual­i­ties or Repub­li­cans might ac­tu­ally hang around lead­er­ship roles long enough to get some­thing done.

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