Given that Trump’s Vice President Mike Pence campaigned for Ed Gillespie this past weekend, and that Gillespie enthusiastically embraced his “friend,” the new article on The Danger of President Pence is particularly timely. I strongly recommend that all Virginia voters read this, to understand more about the man Gillespie finds so appealing. I also strongly recommend that after you’re done, you figure out how you’re going to help elect Democrats up and down the ballot on November 7. For now, here are a few highlights…er, lowlights from the profile of this extremist nutjob Ed Gillespie is so close with.
- Gillespie’s pal Pence is the “corporate right’s inside man.”
- Gillespie’s pal Pence is a “doctrinaire ideologue,” a “‘full-spectrum conservative’ on social, moral, economic, and defense issues” who “leans so far to the right that he has occasionally echoed A.C.L.U. arguments against government overreach; he has, for instance, supported a federal shield law that would protect journalists from having to identify whistle-blowers.”
- Gillespie’s pal Pence is “extraordinarily loyal to Trump,” so much so that he’s been called “Sycophant-in-Chief.”
- Perhaps most insidiously – and most similarly to Gillespie – Pence “has a close relationship with the conservative billionaire donors who have captured the Republican Party’s agenda in recent years.”
- That includes the Koch brothers, who were “very excited about the Vice-Presidential pick.” No wonder: as Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse explains: “If Pence were to become President for any reason, the government would be run by the Koch brothers—period. He’s been their tool for years…Pence’s close relationship with dozens of conservative groups, including Americans for Prosperity, the Kochs’ top political organization, was crucial to his rise.” Pence’s commitment to the Kochs is “ironclad.” That’s the guy Ed Gillespie welcome with open arms Saturday night in Abingdon. Shudddderrr…
- Gillespie’s BFF Pence is a guy who – seriously – “never dined alone with another woman, or attended an event in mixed company where alcohol was served unless his wife was present.”
- Pence is a guy who actually wrote an essay arguing that “Smoking doesn’t kill,” and that a worse “scourge” than smoking was “big government disguised as do-gooder, healthcare rhetoric.” Completely demented.
- Pence also was a member of the Board of the Indiana Family Institute, “a far-right group that supported the criminalization of abortion and campaigned against equal rights for homosexuals.” Also, “while Pence ran the Indiana Policy Review Foundation, it published an essay arguing that unmarried women should be denied access to birth control.” Again, this is Gillespie’s “friend,” so take from that what you will…
- Pence is a guy whose politics “were always way outside the mainstream…He just does it with a smile on his face instead of a snarl.” Kind of like his pal Ed Gillespie, perhaps?
- In Congress, Pence was – according to “Mike Lofgren, a former Republican congressional staff member,” “as far right as you could go without falling off the earth.”
- Hold on, it gets even better: “After Barack Obama was elected President, Pence became an early voice of the Tea Party movement, which opposed taxes and government spending with an angry edge. Pence’s tone grew more militant, too. In 2011, he made the evening news by threatening to shut down the federal government unless it defunded Planned Parenthood…His radicalism, however, only boosted his national profile. Pence became best known for fiercely opposing abortion. He backed ‘personhood’ legislation that would ban it under all circumstances, including rape and incest, unless a woman’s life was at stake. He sponsored an unsuccessful amendment to the Affordable Care Act that would have made it legal for government-funded hospitals to turn away a dying woman who needed an abortion. “
- Pence is, as a tool of the Koch brothers and as a fundamentalist religious fanatic, not surprisingly a climate science denier extraordinaire: “Pence, who had called global warming ‘a myth’ created by environmentalists in their ‘latest Chicken Little attempt to raise taxes,’ took up the Kochs’ cause.”
- Last but not least: “In the spring of 2015, Pence signed a bill called the Religious Freedom Restoration Act,” which “essentially legalized discrimination against homosexuals by businesses in the state,” with “Pence surrounded by monks and nuns, along with three of the most virulently anti-gay activists in the state.”
The big question for Ed Gillespie, of course, is whether there are any areas where he differs from his BFF Mike Pence. If not, clearly no Virginian – other than those who love the Koch brothers, climate science denial, anti-LGBT discrimination, etc. – should do anything else but vote Democratic up and down the ballot on November 7. Unless, of course, you want Virginia to become more like Mike Pence’s Indiana…or Trump/Pence’s dystopian version of America. Nope, didn’t think you did.