Mike Pence

Pence Has Turned Office Into Gateway for Lobbyists

“Vice President Pence has transformed his office into a new entry point for lobbyists seeking to influence the Trump administration across federal agencies,” the Washington Post reports.

“About twice as many companies and other interests hired lobbyists to contact the vice president’s office in Pence’s first year than in any single year during the tenures of Vice Presidents Joe Biden and Richard B. Cheney, filings show.”

NAFTA Talks Break Down After Pence Ultimatum

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau “said months of intense negotiations between his country, the United States and Mexico imploded Tuesday when Vice President Pence demanded that any deal expire automatically in five years,” the Washington Post reports.

“Trudeau said he was prepared to travel to Washington this week to try to finalize a rework of the North American Free Trade Agreement, but Pence, in the phone call, said a meeting would occur only if the ‘sunset’ provision was agreed to in advance.”

Why Mike Pence Won’t Be President

Matt Bai: “There’s no question that Pence is building his own political operation, separate from Trump’s… Pence is definitely positioning himself for an opening, which is exactly why he goes off at Cabinet meetings about how blessed he is just to breathe the same air as Trump. He says those things because the only way he can privately maneuver to consolidate power is to publicly venerate the boss at the same time.”

“This is politics 101… Except here’s the problem for Pence: Close as he is to the presidency, his chances of ever getting the job fall somewhere between remote and imaginary.”

Pence Reaches for Control of the GOP

New York Times: “While Mr. Trump remains an overpowering personality in Republican politics, he is mostly uninterested in the mechanics of managing a political party. His team of advisers is riven with personal divisions and the White House has not yet crafted a strategy for the midterms. So Mr. Trump’s supremely disciplined running mate has stepped into the void.”

“Republican officials now see Mr. Pence as seeking to exercise expansive control over a political party ostensibly helmed by Mr. Trump, tending to his own allies and interests even when the president’s instincts lean in another direction. Even as he laces his public remarks with praise for the president, Mr. Pence and his influential chief of staff, Nick Ayers, are unsettling a group of Mr. Trump’s fierce loyalists who fear they are forging a separate power base.”

The Worst Person In Government?

George Will: “Donald Trump, with his feral cunning, knew. The oleaginous Mike Pence, with his talent for toadyism and appetite for obsequiousness, could, Trump knew, become America’s most repulsive public figure. And Pence, who has reached this pinnacle by dethroning his benefactor, is augmenting the public stock of useful knowledge. Because his is the authentic voice of today’s lickspittle Republican Party, he clarifies this year’s elections: Vote Republican to ratify groveling as governing.”

“There will be negligible legislating by the next Congress, so ballots cast this November will be most important as validations or repudiations of the harmonizing voices of Trump, Pence, Arpaio and the like. Trump is what he is, a floundering, inarticulate jumble of gnawing insecurities and not-at-all compensating vanities, which is pathetic. Pence is what he has chosen to be, which is horrifying.”

Pence Doctor Resigns After Jackson Debacle

“Vice President Mike Pence’s physician has resigned, the latest fallout from the collapse of Ronny Jackson’s nomination for secretary of Veterans Affairs,” Politico reports.

“Dr. Jennifer Peña, who like Jackson is a military physician detailed to the White House, was among those who detailed claims of professional misconduct against Jackson to senators considering his nomination.”

“Peña claimed in memos that Jackson may have violated Karen Pence’s patient privacy rights by sharing details of a medical incident involving the second lady to chief of staff John Kelly. The memos were first reported by CNN.”

Pence National Security Aide Quits

“Vice President Mike Pence’s pick for his national security adviser, Jon Lerner, has withdrawn after his hiring created tensions in the administration,” CNN reports.

“A GOP source close to the administration confirmed that news of Lerner’s hiring by the vice president created some tension within the administration, saying it caused ‘a big damn mess.'”

Pence Hits the Campaign Trail

Vice President Mike Pence “will continue his campaign-style blitz around the country this week as Republicans scramble to stave off what they fear could be a Democratic wave in the 2018 midterm elections,” Politico reports.

“Pence has pledged to be a regular presence on the trail, where he is seen as a popular speaker and gifted fundraiser, without President Trump’s flair for controversy.”

Pence Rallies Conservatives to Fight In 2018 Elections

Vice President Mike Pence “rallied thousands of conservative activists on Thursday to fight back against a Democratic drive to take over the U.S. Congress in 2018 elections, calling a Republican victory at the midterm votes crucial to advancing President Trump’s agenda,” Reuters reports.

Said Pence: “The other side is motivated. The other side is mobilized. And so today, to the men and women of this conservative movement, I admonish you: Let this be the day that we as a movement decided to deliver another victory for the American people in 2018.”

He described Democrats as only against Trump: “Their platform can be summed up in only one word: Resist. Resist our policies. Resist our president, and resist the progress the progress that you and I and our entire movement has fought for so hard, so long, to achieve.”

Pence and North Koreans Were Set for Secret Meeting

Vice President Pence “departed for a five-day, two country swing through Asia earlier this month having agreed to a secret meeting with North Korean officials while in South Korea at the 2018 Winter Olympic Games,” the Washington Post reports.

“But on Saturday Feb. 10, less than two hours before Pence and his team were set to meet with Kim Yo Jong, the younger sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, and Kim Yong Nam, the regime’s nominal head of state, the North Koreans pulled out of the scheduled meeting, according to Pence’s office.”

Pence Will Campaign Hard This Year

Vice President Mike Pence “is launching one of the most aggressive campaign strategies in recent White House history: he will hopscotch the country over the next three months, making nearly three dozen stops that could raise tens of millions of dollars for House and Senate Republicans, all while promoting the party’s legislative accomplishments,” Politico reports.

“The vice president’s team has devised a unique ancillary strategy to support his cross-country campaigning: partnering with America First Policies — a Trump-backed public-policy non-profit group designed to boost the president’s agenda — to hold public events designed specifically to discuss legislative achievements like the tax bill.”

“Pence’s plan, extraordinary for a vice president, has its roots in a congressional summit at Camp David. In early January, congressional Republicans leaders projected the risk of political peril to White House staff at the presidential retreat.”