Pence Gets Schlonged
This is for real. This is the Trump-Pence logo. I can’t even, and neither can you. When they write Mike Pence’s political obituary after this three-month
prison stint campaign, they won’t need any words, only this logo.
Right now, a thousand keyboards are clacking as political reporters churn out stories saying in so many words that the selection of Pence will likely help reassure Republicans who have their doubts about Trump’s understanding of and commitment to conservative principles.
Don’t believe any of them. Recall that last year, Indiana passed a state religious freedom restoration act (RFRA), which was the state version of existing federal legislation that passed Congress and was signed into President Bill Clinton with overwhelming bipartisan support. (John McCormack has an explainer of the legislation here.) Though the Indiana law is not in conflict with other LGBT protections, it was decried as an act of bigotry. Journalists started fishing for villains, settling on the religious owners of an Indiana pizza parlor who said they would not (hypothetically) want to cater a gay wedding. Companies such as Apple and Ebay, which have no problem doing business in bastions of enlightened attitudes on gays as Saudi Arabia and Indonesia, threatened to boycott Indiana. (Curiously, they have not also threatened to boycott the existing 21 states with RFRAs.)
Once it became clear that Pence was going to have to make a stand on religious freedom, he folded. Indiana’s religious freedom law was gutted at Pence’s direction within a week of it being passed.
The only reason social conservatives have to vote for Trump is the certainty that a President Hillary Clinton would stack the Supreme Court with very liberal justices, versus the possibility that Trump-nominated justices would be more fair towards socially conservative causes, none of which is more important than religious liberty. (A side note: it is nothing short of a calamity that “religious liberty” is now seen in American political culture as a socially conservative cause, as opposed to a cause that ought to be near and dear to the hearts of all Americans. But that’s how it is.)
Trump has picked a running mate who, when confronted by alpha-male bullies in corporate boardrooms who want to impose their will, will acquiesce. Trump, an alpha-male corporate bully in his own right, must have seen what Pence did when big business ganged up on the state of Indiana over religious liberty, and then decided he was a man with whom he could easily dominate. They deserve each other. So, vote for Trump if you like — he’s still the better choice for people who only vote on the Court — but don’t do it because you think Mike Pence will be of any help to religious and social conservatives.
UPDATE:MBD nails it:
Mike Pence represents the Republican Party’s slow-witted, mercenary, and substance-free style; he embodies its mediocrity, greed, and cravenness. And his selection as Trump’s running mate is like an arranged marriage in which no one expects real happiness, but instead comforts themselves with the hope of proximity to money and a whiff of power.