I guess that everyone’s heard by now why Donald Trump chose the Governor of Indiana, Mike Pence, to be his Vice Presidential candidate. Apparently it took yet another family “intervention” to save The Donald from himself and convince him to chose someone who would help him unite his fractured party, a choice once made he apparently regretted. Then again, with many potential Republican candidates running away from Trump, he didn’t have a whole lot of good options. All of this brings up the question of what happens when Trump becomes President of the United States and is completely freed from the constraints of a campaign; who is going to be able to keep him destroying himself and the country as well? But that’s a topic for a different article.
The question today is why did Mike Pence give up the Indiana governor’s office to play second fiddle to an egotistical reality TV star suffering from a narcissistic personality disorder that has aspirations of being the most powerful person in the world? After all, Trump’s bid to become President is anything but a slam dunk. Currently election statistician Nate Silver gives him only a 33.1% chance of winning the election while Las Vegas casinos will give 9/4 you odds if you bet on him to win meaning he is worse than a 2 to 1 underdog.
Also, it’s not like Pence is in the middle of his term so if the duo loses he can go back to being Governor. Pence is running for reelection for a second term and Indiana law prevents him from running for Governor and Vice President at the same time. So when he became Trump’s running mate he had to withdraw from the Governor’s race. So if the Trump/Pence duo loses in November, Trump can go back to running is business empire, but Pence will be out of a job.
So why did Pence do it. Perhaps a recent article originally posted 5/18/16 on the Indianapolis based WTHR TV 13 website about a recent Indiana Governor’s race poll provides some insights into the Governor’s thinking:
The first post-primary, statewide poll in the Indiana governor’s race has the incumbent with a 40-36 percent lead. At first blush, that would seem to be a positive for Governor Mike Pence until you realize 12 percent more Republicans were sampled than Democrats, which means this could be a horse race.
The poll put the governor’s re-elect number at 36 percent, with 49 percent wanting a new person in office and 15 percent undecided.”
“On the question of job approval, 40 percent approved of the governor’s performance in office while 42 percent disapproved; the rest were undecided.
The undecided group may turn out to be the political battleground for John Gregg (the Democratic nominee) and Mike Pence. Women under age 45 want a new governor by a 59-21 percent margin. Only thirty-six percent of college-educated Hoosiers approve of the job Gov. Pence has done in his first term. Fifty percent disapprove.
So Mike Pence’s bid for reelection would have been no slam dunk either; it was a race he could have easily lost to a Democrat in a solid red state where Romney beat Obama by more than 7% in 2012. For Pence such a loss in a reelection bid could have been a career ender. On the other hand if the duo of Trump/Pence loses in November, Pence will likely not be held accountable; Trump will absorb all of the blame. Pence will be seen as the white knight that rode in to save the day against impossible odds, but just couldn’t overcome Trump’s erratic performance as a candidate. Mike Pence would gain national recognition during the race and would live to fight again another day.