Mike Pence always stands behind Trump even though Trump would never do the same in return.
You'd think that Vice President Mike Pence might want to try to distance himself a bit from Donald Trump right now, given how swiftly the Ukraine scandal is dragging Trump down. Instead, Pence is going all-in on backing Trump and humiliating himself in the process.
During Trump's very bad Wednesday, he gave a rather incoherent press conference where he spouted "deep state" conspiracy theories. However, he took some time out from doing that to throw his vice president completely under the Ukraine bus, telling the assembled reporters that they should really be pestering Pence for his telephone calls as well: "I think you should ask for Vice President Pence's conversation, because he had a couple of conversations also." He went on to say that Pence's conversations with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky were "perfect."
Instead of being angry that Trump implicated him, Pence instead went on Lou Dobbs' show on Fox Business to defend him, saying that the memo released by Trump "completely vindicated" him. Pence went on to describe Trump's thuggish conversation with Zelensky as "a conversation with a world leader [...] about issues that were appropriate issues related to our strong relationship with Ukraine, and it was nothing more than that."
Pence also crowed about Trump's terrifyingly somnambulant speech at the United Nations earlier in the week, saying it was "historic" and "important."
Pence liked his time on Dobbs' show so much that he decided to send several tweets quoting himself in order to memorialize the event. Apparently, he was quite fond of having told Dobbs, "The United States of America has stood strong with Ukraine ever since the Russian military overran Crimea and has been underwriting a savage war in the Donbas province in Ukraine."
Pence neatly overlooks the fact that under Trump, the United States hasn't stood strong with Ukraine at all. Even before he was elected, Trump presided over the watering down of U.S. support for the country.
Back during the 2016 election, Trump helped push a change to the GOP platform that weakened the party's position on support for Ukraine. And as recently as last month, Trump was considering withholding military aid from Ukraine. In fact, one of those "perfect" phone calls Pence had with Zelensky was on September 18, less than a week after Trump finally stopped holding the Ukraine aid hostage.
Pence is highly likely to get even more caught up in the Ukrainian scandal. He probably shouldn't rely on Trump to help him out when that happens.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.