Monday, July 11, 2016

Don't Hand Pence VEEP Nod Yet

Donald Trump
If you believe what you read, Mike Pence is all but announced as Donald Trump's nominee for Vice President.  Abdul's Cheat Sheet and now the Washington Times are reporting that the Indiana Governor will almost certainly be Donald Trump's Vice Presidential nominee.

I have to say that I'll believe it when I see it.

That could be Tuesday here in Westfield when Trump holds a rally after a private fundraiser downtown in Indianapolis's famed Columbia Club.

There's a good chance that the reports are right, but Trump is a showman. The showman always has something up his sleeve.  I agree with my friend and fellow political observer, Alex Kirby, that there's more to this story than meets the eye.

Unlike Kirby, I'm not a Trump supporter, but I do like the way he's thinking.  Kirby believes that Trump is leaking these stories about Pence to keep the story alive and well, and that's pretty Trump-ian.  He thinks Newt Gingrich is the better choice, and I agree that Newt would be a far more capable VEEP or Vice Presidential candidate than Governor Pence.

If you look at this rationally, Pence doesn't help Trump much at all.  In fact, Pence is not popular in his own state.  He won't move the needle with women, independents, or moderates.  He doesn't draw in any minority votes.  His divisive views have pushed people apart.

As far as his record goes, Mike Pence has built his resume largely on a do-nothing 12 years in Congress an on the back of the work of his predecessor, Mitch Daniels, and President Barack Obama.  While he is telegenic, Pence's not good on his feet answering questions, and he will get handily defeated in the Vice Presidential Debate later this year. The only place Pence helps Trump is with the evangelicals, and many of them are disappointed with the Hoosier governor.

Trump is unpredictable.  I think that there's still a chance Trump gets up on that stage and selects Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich, his hair dresser, his daughter, his 10-year-old son, Tom Brady, or even Florence Henderson.  After all, he did once host the Celebrity Apprentice with Gary Busey as a cast member.

We'll see what happens this week, though.  If nothing else, it should be interesting.

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