Reprinted with permission from AlterNet.
Vice President Mike Pence is “the worst person in government,” conservative columnist George Will declared in the Washington Post Wednesday night. He has, in that regard, surpassed even President Donald Trump, Will said.
Will, who left the Republican Party after the rise of Trump, now seems to hold unique disdain for his formerly fellow partisans who emboldened the president’s ascent. Perhaps, in that way, Pence has played a unique role.
But Will primarily excoriates Pence for his fawning behavior toward Trump. This has most famously been on display during televised Cabinet meetings during which Trump’s subordinates take their time to praise him profusely and thank the president for his generosity. No one has been more obsequious in these displays than Pence.
What seems to have really convinced Will of the vice president’s depravity, though, was Pence’s completely unnecessary and gratuitous praise for Sheriff Joe Arpaio, the Arizona official who was convicted for contempt of court after he was racially profiling drivers and holding people unlawfully against their will. Trump pardoned Arpaio for his crimes, and at an event last week, Pence praised him for being a champion of the “rule of law.”
“[What] was the practicality in Pence’s disregard of the facts about Arpaio?” Will asks. “His pandering had no purpose beyond serving Pence’s vocation, which is to ingratiate himself with his audience of the moment.”
He continued: “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.”
Cody Fenwick is a reporter and editor. Follow him on Twitter @codytfenwick.