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President Mike Pence, that’s right, I said it

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Civic

President Mike Pence, that’s right, I said it

Mike Pence is my one and only frenemy.

“Frenemy” to my surprise, actually is a word. Dictionary.com defines it as a “a person that is friendly toward another because the relationship brings benefits, but harbors feelings of resentment or rivalry.”

Sadly, I know that I am not the Vice President’s frenemy in return. I am relatively sure he doesn’t give me much thought at all. There have been times I would have thought I might have been a brief shrug of a topic when one of my mini-biopics of him makes the rounds.  But have I ever gotten as much as a phone call, text or staff complaint?  Nope. Nada.

In the words of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, that’s “kind of hurtful.”

I am not the first to write this, but I think it means more when I do than it does when, say, Albert Brooks does it on Twitter, but Mike Pence will be our next president. It means more because I know why it is such a profound problem better than those outside of Indiana do. However, I am convinced that the presidency of Donald J. Trump effectively ended this week. I am also now convinced that America will be better off when the president acknowledges he is incapable of doing the job, has made all of the money he can make, and voluntarily moves on.

There is no way Trump can sustain this level of buffoonery and failure for 3.5 more years.  His ego won’t allow it.

Now, how have I gotten so far out on this limb and reentered the political prediction game after being so wrong in 2016?  Because in the last ten days, three prominent, respected, national media publications have contacted me to discuss a Pence presidency. That’s right. The media is now preparing for the change.

Let’s face it, for the national media to get so deep in the weeds that they are calling me, they are invested in their prediction, or expectation, that Trump won’t make it through his first term. The last ten days in the White House were bad ones. There have been plenty of bad stretches in these illustrious six months. But Washington, D.C. is now turning on President Trump, and that includes all three branches of government. None of his supporters have even come up with a coherent theory explaining how he turns this sinking ship around.

Except through war, and only maybe.

A list of Trump Administration departures that will almost certainly be outdated as soon as I publish includes: Reince Priebus (Chief of Staff), Michael Flynn (National Security Adviser), James Comey (FBI Director), Mike Dubke (Communications Director), Sean Spicer (Press Secretary), Katie Walsh (Deputy Chief of Staff), KT McFarland (Deputy National Security Adviser), Craig Deare (National Security Council) and Michael Short (Assistant Press Secretary).

This week also featured reports of trouble afoot with H.R. McMaster, Trump’s second National Security Adviser, and two cabinet members in Secretaries of Defense and State Jim Mattis and Rex Tillerson.

All of this trouble with his team doesn’t even include the self inflicted drama with Attorney General Sessions, which appears to have cost the Trump/Pence team all of what little goodwill it had in the U.S. Senate.

Whew.  People, this is not a leaky or sinking ship, this boat is firmly planted in the bottom of the deep blue sea.

So here I am, stuck in Indiana. A small town hobbyist writer who just happens to have had the urge to write excessively about our former governor. Who knew that those columns and my book would become reference material for our next, dare I say, president?

It will happen.  He will be president. We have no place else to go.

And then, the culture war we are embroiled in right now will calm down. Oh my goodness, I almost wrote that with a straight keyboard!

A President Pence is a better option than a President Trump. I don’t think Pence will be a good president, as I don’t think he was a good governor. His ideology does not match America’s. But he is not the unpredictable, disrespectful powder keg of embarrassment that Trump is.

New demand ensues for last year’s classic.

A local conservative radio talk show host, while talking about my book on air last year, referred to me as a “punk,” because of my voluminous critiques of my frenemy. Now, this windbag clearly never read the book, and when I confronted him with my offer to come on his show and discuss things he accused me of having nothing to offer but “unbridled Pence hate.”

That is simply not true.  I don’t hate Mike Pence.  I can successfully challenge his management and his policies. And I can do it in detail.

In a speech I gave early this year I said “the reason why I wrote 25 critical columns about Mike Pence, is because I didn’t have time to write 26.”

Thanks Trump–you have given me bonus time. It appears I will get a shot at the Reunion Tour of the Frenemies that I never thought would happen.

 

 

 

Michael is a long time fixture at the Indiana Statehouse and Government Center. He has spent half his career working for the government, and the other half working on it as a lobbyist and public affairs consultant. He started writing his weekly column in 2014, and it has been published throughout Indiana since 2015. He published his first book, Contrary To Popular Belief, in 2016. He is married with two young adult sons, is a lifelong, competitive and frustrated golfer and a workout addict. But mainly he is smart, funny and cool.

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