Yesterday we were all fretting about Chris Christie being in control of the transition team. What ghoulish gang would he assemble? Giuliani? Gingrich? Santorum?
That would have been very bad. But it is about to get much, much worse.
Mike Pence is now in charge of the transition team.
Seems like it makes total sense to put your VP in charge of something important like that. But if you are to believe this New York Times report, this Vice President will be the most powerful Vice President in history. And that includes
Darth VaderDick Cheney.
In the story, the Times reports that John Kasich (remember him? He was so dreamy in comparison) was approached to be VP by Trump Jr.
Wrote the Times:
"But according to the Kasich adviser (who spoke only under the condition that he not be named), Donald Jr. wanted to make him an offer nonetheless: Did he have any interest in being the most powerful vice president in history?
When Kasich’s adviser asked how this would be the case, Donald Jr. explained that his father’s vice president would be in charge of domestic and foreign policy.
Then what, the adviser asked, would Trump be in charge of?
“Making America great again” was the casual reply."
So, what appears to be happening is that Pence is in charge of building his own cabinet.
Let's go over the reasons why Mike Pence is even scarier than Donald Trump:
—Donald Trump was, for much of his life, a registered Democrat and has until recently been pro gay marriage, pro choice, and pro single-payer health care. That's not to let him off the hook. He's probably, definitely, actually a total bigot and a racist—and has been accused of assaulting scores of women.
Here are two videos of Trump saying reasonable things that we agree with. (One of them was actually an anti-Trump campaign commercial for the GOP during the primary).
Other the other hand, Mike Pence is a certifiable monster. He is a right-wing Christian with all those "values."
—His record on abortion is abysmal: "The future of conservatism begins with a commitment to the unalienable right to life. Without the right to life there is no right to liberty or property," he said.
He also said: "Our candidate must be willing to stand for the unborn and commit to appointing justices to the Supreme Court who will consign Roe v. Wade to the ash heap of history."
And: "And our candidates must be willing to deny federal funding to any organization that promotes abortion at home and abroad. It is time to end all federal funding to Planned Parenthood."
He followed through on that promise, signing an anti-abortion bill.
His home state of Indiana even convicted a woman after claiming she took pills to induce an abortion. The woman, Purvi Patel, said she had a miscarriage. This was during the time that Mike Pence was governor of the state. The Indiana appeals court overturned it.
—He's against civil rights for gay people: "The future of conservatism demands that we stand for the traditional definition of marriage. Marriage was ordained by God and instituted in law. It is the glue of the American family and the safest harbor to raise children."
He also voted against job discrimination based on sexual orientation (this is also in the civil rights section).
He supported the use of federal funding for conversion therapy. From an archive of his website in 2000:
Congress should support the reauthorization of the Ryan White Care Act only after completion of an audit to ensure that federal dollars were no longer being given to organizations that celebrate and encourage the types of behaviors that facilitate the spreading of the HIV virus. Resources should be directed toward those institutions which provide assistance to those seeking to change their sexual behavior.
He was rated 7% by the American Civil Liberties Union in 2002 for his anti-civil rights voting record, 0% by the Human Rights Coalition in 2006 for his anti-gay-rights stance, and 22% by the NAACP in 2006 for his anti-affirmative-action stance. (Also in the civil rights section.)
The war on Planned Parenthood also caused an HIV outbreak. In 2015. An HIV outbreak in the United States of America. Last YEAR.
—He's as bad as Trump on immigration. He has hardline immigration ideas, and long before Trump touted a wall, he voted to build a fence along the Mexican border, wanted to require hospitals to report undocumented immigrants, and wanted to end birthright citizenship. He also wanted to declare English as the official language of the United States.
—He sucks on jobs: He was against raising the minimum wage to $7.25 — SEVEN DOLLARS AND TWENTY FIVE CENTS—and has an anti-union voting record.
—He also refused to comply with the Prison Rape Elimination Act. He was in the minority in his own party on this issue. He is a monster. He is now reportedly our acting president.