'As Congress lurches towards impeachment, complete with Cabinet-level subpoenas, the specter of a Mike Pence presidency looms larger.
But let’s face it: Whether it’s in 2024 or sooner, President Pence in the Oval Office would be a dream come true for establishment Republicans and war hawk neocons alike. Trump-style “America First” nationalism would be dead on arrival, in its place the zombified corpse of globalism.
During the run up to the 2016 election, the media criticized Trump’s choice of Pence as hypocritical. Trump had famously broke with Republican orthodoxy when he called the Iraq war “a disaster.” He never missed an opportunity to deride Hillary Clinton for her support of the 2003 invasion. But Trump didn’t seem to mind that his choice for vice president had also voted for the war. Huh?
That’s because Trump sees the presidency as a one-man band, and he prefers to lead it in the same style as the Trump organization, unshackled by the past policy positions of aides. Pence looks straight out of “central casting,” Trump has been heard to say of his veep. For Trump, advisers are mostly decorative, and Pence is a vice president a Hollywood director might choose for a second-rate film.
Unlike Trump, Pence is not a newcomer to government. He has a lengthy record as both a U.S. Congressman and Governor of Indiana, highlighting why he has been described as “a hawk’s hawk.” Pence didn’t just vote for the war in Iraq; he went all in, supporting increases in defense spending, the export of “American values” style exceptionalism around the globe, and a resolution to delay a set-date for troop withdrawals from Iraq until the nation-building phase was complete.
Pence has advocated for U.S. military intervention in Syria, an icier relationship with Russia, and stronger support for NATO. Pence touts his Congressional record as one of the most conservative lawmakers in the country, and likes to describes himself as “a Christian, a conservative and a Republican, in that order.”
As vice president, Pence has continued to burnish his neocon bona fides. He has praised NATO throughout the Trump presidency, and continues to stress its importance on the international stage, even as allies feel he’s not on the same page as his boss.'
Read more: Mike Pence Presidency: Neocons and GOP Suits Salivating for Return to Bush-Style Foreign Policy
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