Spoiler alert!


You don’t have to wait for the Republican convention to find out who is going to be Trump’s vice presidential pick: it’s Mike Pence of Indiana. Blech.

It’s time the Republicans stopped playing up this incipient train wreck. I like what Charles Pierce said.

Damn them all now.

Damn the delegates who will vote for this man. Damn the professional politicians who will fall in line behind him or, worse, will sit back and hope this all blows over so the Republican Party once again will be able to relegate the poison this man has unleashed to the backwaters of the modern conservative intellectual mainstream, which is where it has been useful for over four decades. Damn the four hopeless sycophants who want to share a stage with him for four months. Damn all the people who will come here and speak on his behalf. Damn all the thoughtful folk who plumb his natural appeal for anything deeper than pure hatred.

Damn all the people who will vote for him, and damn any progressives who sit this one out because Hillary Rodham Clinton is wrong on this issue or that one. Damn all the people who are suggesting they do that. And damn all members of the media who treat this dangerous fluke of a campaign as being in any way business as usual. Any support for He, Trump is, at this point, an act of moral cowardice. Anyone who supports him, or runs with him, or enables his victory, or even speaks well of him, is a traitor to the American idea.


  1. says

    There is nothing like listening to my fauxgressive coworker who considers Hillary the second coming of the Devil who will begin WW3, is the biggest hawk in the history of the American political system, and that “besides not starting world war 3 and the supreme court, how is hillary better” and I just want to smother him with a rancid pile of santorum.

    this fucking election can’t be over fast enough. Sig Heil il toupee, and let everything burn already.

  2. fusilier says

    On the Other Hand, Pence can’t run for a second term as governor; Indiana state law says a candidate may only run for one office at a time. Downside is that John Gregg might have to change his campaign slogan from “I’m Not Mike Pence.”

    Evan Bayh has announced for the US Senate seat he gave up six years ago, just FYI.

    fusilier, In Indianapolis
    James 2:24

  3. Holms says

    Brace for the lecture from Vicar about how ‘sitting this one out’ is totally reasonable…

  4. John Harshman says

    The notion has been advanced that you don’t have to vote for Hillary unless you live in a swing state. But can you be absolutely sure you aren’t in a swing state this time around? I don’t think that’s clear. Need we bring up Nader/Florida again? And you had better vote for Democrats in Congress, even if you vote Green or whatever fringe party you like for President.

  5. Donnie says

    @6 John Harshman

    The notion has been advanced that you don’t have to vote for Hillary unless you live in a swing state. But can you be absolutely sure you aren’t in a swing state this time around?

    D.C. residents, Yes. However, let’s all remember Brexit. Holy Shit, you mean if I do not vote for my preferred option, the shit option will win? Seriously, this election is a referendum on how we, the American people, view our beliefs. There are two options,

    1. We are a Country of White, males that make the laws for everyone else
    2. We are a Country of diverse populations in which white males are just one portion of the population, and that Diversity should be recognized, acknowledged, and progress forward

    TL;DR Are we a Country of hate filled, xenophobic bigots or not. Simple choice.

  6. says

    The White House expertly trolled the Trump campaign by praising Trump’s V.P. pick. White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest pointed out that Mike Pence did one good thing:

    […] “I know that Gov. Pence did do some important work with the administration to expand Medicaid in his state,” Earnest told reporters when asked what Obama thinks of the governor. “That’s something President Obama has been encouraging Democratic and Republican governors across the country to do.”

    The spokesman added, however, he would “leave it to the individual candidates to determine who they believe would best complement their skills and could lead their party.”

    The Hill link.

    Here’s something the dunderheaded Pence said in 2000:

    Time for a quick reality check. Despite the hysteria from the political class and the media, smoking doesn’t kill. In fact, 2 out of every three smokers does not die from a smoking related illness and 9 out of ten smokers do not contract lung cancer.

    Here’s something the dunderhead said in 2009:

    [I embrace] the view that God created the Heavens and the Earth, the Seas and all that’s in them. The means that he used to do that, I can’t say, but I do believe in that fundamental truth.

    More recently, Pence used “religious liberty” to discriminate against LGBT people.

  7. says

    Mike Pence on Iraq:

    In a September 2002 CNN appearance, Pence called for a formal declaration of war on Iraq and asserted that Saddam Hussein’s regime was supporting al Qaeda. Three days later on the network, he said “there’s overwhelming evidence…circumstantial and otherwise to suggest a connection between Iraq and al Qaeda.” In an editorial board interview with the local Palladium-Item in Richmond, IN that month, he went further. “There is an enormous amount of evidence that Saddam has weapons of mass destruction, is doing his best to develop more lethal weapons, and funds and supports terrorism,”
    Less than a year later Pence’s conviction that Hussein had WMD was exposed as a sham. But the freshly re-elected congressman rejected calls to investigate what had gone wrong with the Bush administration’s case for war. “It might be enough for you [to want an inquiry], but I’d rather put my confidence in the overwhelming evidence of over a decade,” he told a CNN host. “It really defies logic and common sense and the overwhelming consensus of the intelligence community of the western world to suggest that a weapons program, weapons of mass destruction was not present in Iraq leading all the way up to Operation Iraqi Freedom.”

    As the bloody, chaotic, destabilizing aftermath of Operation Iraqi Freedom became obvious, Pence kicked his denialism into high gear. Returning from a visit to Iraq that included a visit to a downtown market in Baghdad, Pence wrote, “I told reporters afterward that it was just like any open-air market in Indiana in the summertime.”


    Trump just issued a statement that he is postponing his announcement of a V.P. pick. Maybe the Medicaid expansion in Indiana changed his mind?

  8. says

    More likely: Trump is postponing his V.P. announcement pick because he wants the news cycle to himself, and right now the news of the attack-by-truck in France is dominating the news. The attack in France is likely to dominate the news tomorrow as well.

  9. Menyambal says

    Well, yay for white men.

    Please vote for Clinton for president. Using your vote as a message about Greens or about Clinton is a wasted vote. As Samantha Bee puts it, we need to vote against Donald Trump. We need every vote possible saying this nonsense will not stand. We need Donald slapped silly and sent away.

    See, when the election is over, most folks are only going to look at the counts for Clinton and Trump. It’s going to be reported as a win by points, and a win by percentages. It will only say that the winner won by X amount, and that is going to be perceived as the “mandate” the winner has. A narrow squeaker is going to give less authority to the winner, while a thorough trouncing is understood to be a firm mandate.

    I’m sorry about your Greens and your Bernies and your e-mails. They don’t count as much as thoroughly kicking Trump’s ass so hard his friends will feel it. It doesn’t matter if you are in the pits of the Trumpest county in the most Trumpery state, your vote will be in the grand total, and it needs to be good. We need it. We need you to vote for Truth, Justice and the American Way.

    Yeah, it’d be nice to vote for Bernie, or to let Clinton know you don’t like her. But those messages are going to be lost in the mess, for most folks. There is only one thing that counts to the country, and that is the overall count. Trump must be seen to lose hard.

    If there wasn’t a dime’s worth of difference between Clinton and Trump, as individuals (and there isn’t as much as I’d like), we will still be voting for the ideals of the parties, and for all the other candidates, and against all the baggage of all their friends and followers. Buckle up and vote for the party if you must, but please don’t be footling about.

    Trump must lose, and lose hard. If you want to send a different message, write a damn letter.

  10. says

    Mike Pence on global warming (from 2001):

    […] the environmental movement has found a new chant for their latest ‘chicken little’ attempt to raise taxes and grow centralized governmental power. […] the earth is actually cooler today than it was about 50 years ago […] most climatologists agree that, at best, global warming is a theory about future climactic conditions and cannot be proven based upon the historic record. […] greenhouse gases are mostly the result of volcanoes, hurricanes and underwater geologic displacements.

    Sounds like Pence shares one trait with Trump, the inability to vet his sources.

  11. ck, the Irate Lump says

    I know everyone likes to talk about how it’s obvious that Clinton will win, but don’t forget that the polling difference between them isn’t that great. Here’s a poll released today that shows them in a tie. The polls she does win on are typically by fairly small margins – around 3 to 11 points.

    I don’t know about anyone else, but I don’t want the neonazis, white supremecists and proto-fascists who are eager for a Trump presidency to think that even a third of the population thinks the same way they do. Trump must be humiliated in the election, not merely defeated.

  12. says

    I love that article by Pierce.

    Here is the truth. Nobody called for a moment of silence for Micah Johnson. Eleven U.S. cities are not on the brink of racial violence. He, Trump just made that shit up so his followers can stay afraid and angry at the people he wants them to fear and hate. This lie was a marching order and the Party of Lincoln is right in step with him, straight into the burning Reichstag of this man’s mind.

  13. vucodlak says

    Trump has promised to commit crimes against humanity, time and time again.

    Don’t give me this “congress won’t allow it” shit. The vast majority of the Democrats in congress have no more courage or conscience than the vast majority of Republicans. Don’t give me “the military won’t follow his orders;” some in the military will, and then we’ve got a civil war. If Trump wins, and he actually tries to follow through on his monstrous proposals, then civil war is the BEST case scenario.

    If Trump loses the election, it’s not likely to be by much. Unless he gets trounced by a historically enormous margin, the only lesson the Republicans will take from the loss is to make sure the next monster has a better campaign infrastructure in place. They’ll polish the next one’s speeches a bit more too, I’m sure, but it will be fundamentally the same creature underneath. They’ve seen how well the extremist hate has played across the country, and they’ll be ready in four years to unleash something even worse.

    And who are we to blame for all of this? Why progressives, of course! A couple of thousand hippies voted for a third party candidate 16 years ago, and then put a gun to Gore’s head and made him give the presidency to W. Even though many those hippies wouldn’t have voted at all, if they hadn’t voted for Nader, they’re still (solely) responsible for the Bush years. I know this, because every election, no matter how big or small, the same people use that talking point to shout down every hint of debate.

    I have a question, though. What happens when the beast wins? It will happen eventually. If not Trump, then some other demagogue in four years, or eight, or however long it takes for “Vote for the lesser evil, or else!” refrain to lose its charm. The right has absolutely no incentive not to continue down that path, and the left is too busy eating their own to mount an effective defense, and the center has never given a damn about anything beyond their own hides.

    Fascism is coming back. Industrialized evil, on a scale beyond anything we’ve ever seen before. Hitler didn’t have an arsenal of nukes, backed up by the most powerful military in the world.

    I’ve seen the Democrats ardent talking about how voting for Clinton is taking the long view, but it’s not a plan they’ve got, it’s a gamble. They keep throwing the dice, hoping that their supporters don’t notice that they not only keep losing, but that they seem to be throwing the game on purpose. Eventually, the people are going to flip the fucking table.

    What then?

  14. Nemo says

    Is that quote in the picture (“Jesus would never have welcomed a sinner into his workplace”) authentic Pence? To me, it reads like a parody, of someone ignorant of his own professed religion.

  15. jack16 says

    Any body not damned? If you don’t vote for Hillary your gonna get Trump. I think that will damn every one. Have you noticed what a poor candidate Pence is? ;-) . . . “Listen! Liberal” has a pretty good summation of our party situation. Does anyone remember the four freedoms?

  16. says

    @Nemo #19:


    “Author note: The ‘alleged’ quote from Governor Pence regarding Jesus never welcoming a sinner in his workplace cannot be verified unconditionally. It was gleaned from a Facebook group’s posting here that included the statement in quotes attributed to Pence. There is, however, no way of knowing what Pence uttered during two different private signing ceremonies where in all likelihood Pence may have made the remark based on his ardent defense of the law. The statement has been removed; all due apologies.”

  17. Dave, ex-Kwisatz Haderach says

    I don’t know squat about Gov Pence, but there is this, posted on his twitter last Dec…

    Governor Mike Pence Verified account

    Calls to ban Muslims from entering the U.S. are offensive and unconstitutional.

    7:30 AM – 8 Dec 2015

    By Trump standards, that’s practically an all-out attack on Trump himself. How did he make the cut?

  18. says

    Being from/in Indiana, now I have to vote Clinton to block the combination of Trump and Pence.

    But I get to help choose the next president then, deal?

  19. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    Duth Olec@23, um console yourself that either way (win or lose VPOTUS), at least he’ll no longer be governor of Indiana (for a spell).
    I see, elsewhere, that the entire State of Indiana is thanking Trump for pulling out of Indiana, while NJ laments that they had hoped the same for their state. Seems NJ will be saddled with bulbous Christie for a while. Being from NJ I am so happy to have escaped.

  20. Mrdead Inmypocket says

    Pierce’s lament to the “American idea” is a joke and hypocritical. He lays blame everywhere except where it squarely belongs. The problem is the Democratic party’s shift to the right. The historical stratification shows that shift to the right in US politics undeniably. The Trump/Pence ticket is a possibility because of that shift. Democrats are mostly but no wholly to blame for this. If Pierce had acknowledged that, even in a minor way, I’d say his article was worth the read. Alas, he can take that blame game and blow.

    Pierce identifies a real problem, but he lays the blame for it everywhere else except where it belongs. Which is laughable. Though I’m going to vote for *cough Shillary. (I have reasons). This kind of divisive rhetoric makes me NOT want to vote for her even more, because frack off you hypocritical, sanctimonious prick.

  21. Ben says

    More to the point in comment 6, people always bring up Florida 2000 to argue against the Greens. But people forget just how close Oregon was that year. A few thousand votes either way, and we could have easily had Gore carry Florida, win the popular vote, but lose the election because Nader threw fucking OREGON to Bush.

  22. Ben says

    Just realized that my electoral college math is off, but my point is still valid.