Fixed line penny as 2024 . field is formed
Many Iowa Republicans have seen the results of the latest Conservative Political Action Conference poll, released just a few days ago, that had Pence with no more than 1 percent support. Before that, they had seen a file Video showing Pence being harassed He called “the traitor” at a large conservative rally in Florida last month.
“I can’t imagine he’s going to get much support,” said Raymond Harr, the Republican vice president for Scott County in eastern Iowa. “There are some Trump supporters who think he is antichrist.”
Harr said Pence “did a good job as vice president,” and called the vitriol directed at him “kind of crazy.” However, he said, “I don’t see it getting over the negatives.”
Six months after he left the vice presidency, that is the prevailing opinion at the grassroots level and among the Republican political class. By most accounts, here and nationally, Pence died in the early waters of 2024.
“World Health Organization?” Doug Gross, a Republican activist who was former Iowa Governor Terry Branstad’s chief of staff, answered emphatically when asked about Pence. “He’s just, where would you put him? … With the Trumpsters, he didn’t perform when they really wanted him to perform, so there was DQ. Then you go to the Evangelists, they have a lot of other options.”
At the moment, Pence occupies a political no-man’s land. Vocal elements in Trump’s base are still angry at him for refusing to reject the results of the November elections, even though he does not have the authority to do so. Meanwhile, moderates see little distance between Pence and the president who took care of him for four years. They worry that the association may stop the bleeding of independents and suburban women Trump in 2018 and again in 2020.
The 62-year-old Pence — and many of the contenders are in their 40s — is too old to represent a new generation of Republican leadership. His deep support among Christian conservatives, which has been a crucial endorsement of Trump, would be insignificant in an area where the religious right has other candidates to choose from.
said Sean Walsh, a Republican strategist who has worked for Reagan and George HW Bush in the White Houses and on several presidential campaigns.
Describing Pence as “stuck between” those competing factions, Walsh said, “I think it’s a very difficult hill for him to climb.”
after the clips Received Pence at Faith and Freedom Alliance event In Florida last month, speaker series organizers in one of the early-nominated states decided to postpone his call. They sympathized with Pence, but feared he would be embarrassed by a similar reception there, according to a source involved in the decision.
Three years before the election—especially for someone with a well-known Pence name, donor network, and extended political network—there is no irreplaceable campaign. But not since another former Vice President from Indiana, Dan Quayle, Run for president in 2000Did a prominent Republican politician’s pre-presidential campaign look more miserable?
“I really like him,” said Carmine Boal, a former Iowa representative who chairs the Northside Conservative Group in Ankeny. But Pence, she said, doesn’t have the “wow factor.”
“You have to have something to give people and take them where they are,” she said. “Pence looks cool and a little off.”
Even if that behavior doesn’t fit the moment, Pence, the former Indiana governor, still has the traits of a formidable candidate. If Trump does not run again in 2024 — the only scenario in which most credible contenders are likely to enter the race — Pence will have the benefit of familiarity with Republican voters, a trusted conservative record and relationships forged during his time in Congress, in the era of Trump administration and while sharing a ticket with Trump in two presidential campaigns.
citizen Republican polling by Republican pollster Tony Fabrizio Last week, Pence placed 15 percent, trailing Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, but ranking second in the presidential primary without Trump running. Returning to the speaker circle in recent months, Pence has drawn appreciative crowds in New Hampshire and South Carolina. In Sioux County, Iowa, on Friday — where Trump received nearly 83 percent of the vote last year — new Republican Rep. Randy Fenstra was topping Pence’s inaugural family outing.
“If you were a donor and the Vice President of the United States called and said he wanted a meeting with you, she would listen to you,” said Wesley Enos, a former Republican Party chair in Iowa Polk. boycott.
Vander Platts, president of The Family Leader, which hosted the Des Moines summit, said that “if Trump didn’t run, Pence would definitely be number one.” In South Carolina, where Pence spoke at the Palmetto Family Council’s annual gala in April, Dave Wilson of the House said that by the time of the 2024 primaries, Republicans might take a “more reasonable view” of how Pence will stand up to Trump.
And in New Hampshire, where Pence addressed a dinner in Hillsborough County last month, Chris Ager, the state’s Republican National Committee member, saw a standing ovation for the former vice president and said, “If you just go back in history” to presidential politics, “there are many examples of people They weren’t even on the radar at this time.”
“Would some rule override this perception that he could have done more?” “I’m not saying she will, I’m just saying it’s too early to count the guy,” said Brett Doster, the Florida-based Republican strategist who served as the state’s executive director for the 2004 Bush-Cheney presidential re-election campaign. And a very large donor network.”
Pence needs more than the time or traditional ebb of a presidential campaign to revive his prospects. His path to the nomination depends, more than most of the contenders, on the highly uncertain prospect that primary voters’ view of the November election – and Pence’s role in it – will change. Majority of Republicans still believe Trump’s lie that the election was stolen, according to several Polls. And Trump supporters haven’t given up, as controversial scrutiny continues in Arizona and lobbying for it Similar reviews in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and other states, although there is no evidence that election results were skewed.
It’s not just Trump’s broad supporters who pose a problem to Pence. White evangelicals, in particular, are feeling the burns of the last election, more like From members of any other religious group who think the November contest has been stolen. These voters once made up Pence’s base.
Pence is trying to hold on to this constituency — if not to change the views of his Republican critics, to shift their focus. Earlier this year, he said he and Trump may “never meet” over the January 6 rebellion. But he does not dwell on it. Instead, he says he “could not be more proud” to have served with Trump, preaching the policies of the Trump and Pence administrations and contrasting them with those of the current Democratic White House. Implicitly, he’s urging Republicans to look at Trump – and he – less for their role in the aftermath of the election than they did the four years before.
In some corners of the MAGA movement, that would probably be impossible. Former Trump campaign strategist Steve Bannon, whose “War Room” podcast helped amplify Trump’s claims that the election was stolen, said Pence is “now dead” but with Republicans drawing more attention to polling reviews in Arizona and other states. Officially he will be buried.
Bannon said, who was Trump pardoned him When he left the White House. “It was ostracized and erased from the MAGA movement, and it didn’t even start.”
He said, “Mike Pence’s political career is over…it’s over.”
A source close to Pence said he is “entirely focused on 2022,” not presidential politics. Nevertheless, he is taking steps to stay in the public eye and to strengthen ties with politicians and Republican donors who could help him in 2024. In April, Pence announced the formation of the American Freedom Advancement Group, a political group. He has a book deal with Simon & Schuster, and he’s raising money for House candidates ahead of next year’s midterm elections. Later this year, he plans to tour college campuses for the Young America’s Foundation, a conservative youth organization.
Pence’s supporters point out that Joe Biden was widely disqualified as a presidential candidate before he won the Democratic nomination and the presidency last year. Trump was a political entity not an entity at this point in the 2016 election cycle. One former adviser predicted that “more and more people will start talking about the achievements of the Trump Pence administration, and when you get to the actual campaign that will take place two to three years from now and compare it to the current administration, There is a very good condition.”
However, the overarching problem for Pence is that even if a large number of Republican voters bypass the last election, responding to the policy inconsistency with Biden, it is not clear whether Pence is the beneficiary. Election faithfuls, like those who stormed the Capitol on January 6 and chanted “hang Mike Pence,” will remain a portion of the electorate unavailable to Pence.
Trump supporters who liked Trump’s policies but not his behavior – the “Trump without tweets” audience – would have a whole host of contenders who didn’t burden Pence with crossing Trump. And Republicans who have never had Trump will likely have other candidates more skeptical of Trump to choose from, including Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming. Pence, who is uniquely linked to Trump by the vice president and distanced from him on January 6, has responsibilities to all of these factions.
“Where does he even go with that?” An attendee shrugged his shoulders outside the dance floor as Pence spoke in Des Moines.
Stuart Spencer, the famous Republican strategist who advised Ronald Reagan, said he concluded that Pence was a “loyal man with a system of faith” when Pence refused to bow to Trump on Jan. 6. But he doubted it would do him any good. in 2024.
“The people of Trump don’t like him, and everyone who was against him doesn’t like him,” Spencer said.
As for Pence, he said, “This is not a big dinner for Lincoln Day.”
Olivia Bevers and Danielle Lipman contributed to this report.