ANOTHER VIEWPOINT: Mike Pence’s truth about Trump good start, but more needed


The Republic

Former Vice President native Mike Pence made news last week for a statement that in a more rational time would not need to have been made.

“President Trump is wrong,” Pence said. “I had no right to overturn the election.”

Think about that. Pence made news for saying that he “had no right” to subvert the will of the American people. Of course, it’s widely believed that Pence is running for president in 2024. For good or ill, Pence’s relationship to Trump defines him at this moment, and Pence made a political calculation to finally say this now, more than a year after the deadly Capitol insurrection.

This remains, at this moment, the United States of America. We remain a democratic republic of 50 states, which chooses its president by electors, who reflect the will of the voters in each state, based on the votes that are counted in every precinct, in every county, and certified by every state.

And it’s worked like this for not quite 250 years.

Until Donald Trump. Pence made news for saying what he did because the former president refuses, to this day, to accept the reality that he lost the 2020 election. Lost by 7 million votes. Lost the Electoral College by a margin of 306-232. Lost by a margin even greater than the electoral “landslide” he claimed he achieved in 2016.

As is his custom when someone speaks the truth about him, Trump lashed out.

“Just saw Mike Pence’s statement on the fact that he had no right to do anything with respect to the Electoral Vote Count, other than being an automatic conveyor belt for the Old Crow Mitch McConnell to get Biden elected President as quickly as possible,” Trump fumed in a statement. “Well, the Vice President’s position is not an automatic conveyor if obvious signs of voter fraud or irregularities exist.”

The “obvious signs of voter fraud or irregularities” exist only in Trump’s delusions. He refuses to even entertain the possibility that he lost, let alone concede that he did. He went to court more than five dozen times on these bogus fraud claims. He couldn’t convince a single judge — even some he himself appointed — that his fraud claims had any merit.

Yet Trump’s pathology is now orthodoxy for a dangerous faction of what now constitutes the Republican Party and who refuse to call Joe Biden the president. Trump denies the possibility, and that’s good enough for them.

But terrible for our country. Meanwhile, we are slowly learning that the only actual election fraud in 2020 was that which Trump’s stooges tried to coerce Pence to engage in. They wanted him, in his ceremonial function in certifying the election, to reject the legitimate slates of states’ electors, or delay them, while conspirators conscripted phony slates of electors from key states, thereby delaying or denying the lawful and peaceful transfer of power to Biden.

The January 6 committee is gathering evidence of this treacherous and seditious plot that was in the shadows of the deadly insurrection at the Capitol. “Hang Mike Pence,” rioters chanted when they learned he would not, in fact, go along and overturn the election.

It’s good that, at last, Pence is speaking the truth. He should testify to the Jan. 6 committee. Pence owes history, and the American people, his version of these critical events.