Mike Pence might be the exemplification of the “Conservative, Inc” side of the Republican Party. While he’s reasonably conservative on most issues, his main problem is that he’s not a fighter and nowhere near as populist as the MAGA movement would like.
He might generally have the right policy ideas, but hasn’t given a shred of evidence that he’d go out on a limb to fight for them, as we saw with his refusal to reject the election results and side with Trump on January 6th. He might have been right that it wouldn’t work, but, then again, doing nothing would obviously fail, so why not try? Because he’s weak-kneed and weak-spined.
In any case, Mr. Conservative, Inc. thinks he has a chance of winning the 2024 GOP presidential slot and has hinted at it a few times in recent months, most notably when he released his blandly conservative “Freedom Plan,” seemingly hoping that scattering the word “freedom” around everything he does will make people forget that he’s not a fighter.
He also told Fox News host Maria Bartiromo that he would consider participating in the 2024 race, saying:
“All my focus right now is on 2022. I think we have a historic opportunity to reclaim majorities in the House and Senate, to elect great Republican governors around America and, in 2023, I’m confident the Republican Party will nominate a candidate who will be the next president of the United States of America and at the right time, my family and I will reflect and consider how we might participate in that process.”
And, most recently, during a Young Americans Foundation (YAF) speaking event at the University of Virginia, Pence dropped another hint that he might run in 2024.
That came when a student asked “I was just wondering if you’re planning to run in 2024 for president?” Pence, in response, said “I’ll keep you posted.”
Why Pence thinks he has a chance of winning are unclear. As the New York Post found, a recent poll not only indicates that Trump would win a race against Biden or Harris, but that Trump far and away holds the support of the GOP voters, with the very similar Ron DeSantis coming in second place. Reporting on that, the NYP said:
The 45th president would unseat Biden by a 47% to 41% margin, according to the Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll published by The Hill. However, 12% of voters are undecided.
Harris going up against Trump would produce an even worse result for Democrats — 49% would vote for the former president compared to 38% for the veep.
[…]A plurality of Republican voters (28%) would back DeSantis if Trump decides against running in 2024, while 24% would support former Vice President Mike Pence and 10% would pick Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas). No other Republican received double-digit support.
So, if Trump would likely win and is still popular with the GOP, Milquetoast Mike probably doesn’t have a chance. Plus, with DeSantis being so similar to Trump on the policy and personal energy level, it seems like DeSantis would tear apart Pence if Trump chose not to run, especially given how unlikely it is for Trump supporters to move to Pence.
Mike might want to run in 2024. But being blandly conservative isn’t enough anymore; the next GOP candidate needs to be a fighter like Trump or DeSantis, not a pretty conservative “nice guy” like Pence.
This story syndicated with permission from Will, Author at Trending Politics