I figure anyone reading this knows about Mike Pence’s homophobic “joke” directed at Pete Buttigieg and his family during he remakes at the recent Gridiron Dinner. The matter got lots of attention in the news and on social media – including quite a bit of blowback. Pence of course deserves getting taken to task for that not at all funny joke. However, something else happened which until a little while ago I had no idea had also taken place.
Pence cracked some jokes making fun of Trump’s “Christianity.”
Whoa! Not just a single wisecrack, meaning Pence wanted to make a point. In effect he called out Trump as a fake Christian (I know – pot calling the kettle black) in a setting with plenty of reporters and muckety-mucks present. Look, it’s no secret how/why Pence made it onto the ticket as Trump’s running mate. Promises to a handful of fanatical RW “Christian” pastors and influencers about judicial picks notwithstanding, Trump badly needed street-cred with Evangelical voters. Pence was the one that gave it to him. Even Trump knew he needed Pence which is why he didn’t dump him from the ticket in 2020. Pence, who channeled Nancy Reagan’s “adoring gaze” at her Ronnie doing the same for Trump for four years was nauseating.
Pence was as devoted as RWNJ “Christian” men demand their women be!
Even after January 6, when Trump was at best ok with him (and his family) being murdered by the insurrectionist mob, and perhaps even hoping for it to happen so he could perhaps get away with declaring martial law Pence remained pretty loyal. Oh, there were some “golly gee, I really wanted Trump to prevail but the law is the law” statements but hardly actual dissent. Now, we all know Pence has long harbored his own Presidential delusions of grandeur and has believed HE was the one to take the torch from Trump and carry it forward. Hell, I have no doubt Pence has multiple times a day hoped Trump would crash & burn if not prayed for it to happen. The real joke as we all know is that Trump’s voters will never, ever forgive him for not doing what Trump demanded on January 6!
But like Sancho Panza dreaming of becoming Don Quixote Pence believes he can become Trump. It’s funny, but also sad.
Pence has continued to suck up to Trump since the latter entered exile at Smarmy-Lago but it’s getting to be crunch time and if he wants to be President he’s got to start creating some distance from Trump. Pence recently was slightly, ever so slightly more forceful in challenging Trump on what he (Pence) could/could not do on January 6. But these wisecracks at the Gridiron Dinner? Basically calling out Trump as a fake when it comes to being Christian?
Like I said, that got overshadowed by the homophobia directed at Buttigieg but it will get more attention over time. RWNJ “Christians” got what they wanted from Trump. A radical federal judiciary that would answer all their naughty wet-dreams including a SCOTUS that handed them their Holy Grail – the overturning of Roe v. Wade. Yes, they want to drink the “wine” of rollbacks of other reproductive rights but that stuff is already in the judicial pipeline. They don’t need Trump anymore.
And now Pence, the guy these rank & file goobers trusted to make sure Trump really had converted into being one of them is saying “Nope. I tried but it turns out he was pretending all along!” If he keeps this up, IF he keeps attacking Trump as a fake Christian (again, yes I see the irony) it’s going to hurt Trump in the primaries. An awful lot of Evangelicals held their noses to vote for Trump, and in large part because of two things. As I said, one was judges and they already got what they wanted on that score. The other was Pence’s assurance that for all the scandal, Trump was no longer “that guy” but was “born again.” If Pence keeps up with calling out Trump as a fake Christian all bets are off.
That brings me back to the question in the title of this article – is Pence starting to grow some spine? Hitting Trump on Christianity, especially if he keeps it up suggests maybe he is. Pence still has zero chance of winning the nomination of course, but he could open things up and make it far tougher for Trump to do so.
Keep an eye on this. It could turn out to be something “bigly.”