The one thing Mike Pence probably didn’t think about while preparing for the vice presidential debate was how to intentionally lose so the ego-trip at the top of the ticket wouldn’t get jealous. It’s a decision he is now regretting.
Audiences were mixed on who “won” the debate. A CNN poll taken immediately after the debate found Pence slightly edged out Tim Kaine. But regardless of hard numbers, unlike Donald Trump, Pence managed to string together a sentence without having a meltdown, screaming, or sniffling. Apparently, Trump took notice. CNN’s John King said a source within the Trump campaign told him that Trump is furious that reviews for Pence were better than his own abysmal ones.
CNN’s John King, reporting from a source close to Trump, that the reviews that Pence did better then he did won’t go over well with Trump
— Sam Stein (@samsteinhp) October 5, 2016
Okay, but that’s just one source. Maybe it was a fluke…
Trump adviser on debate after Pence passed up opportunities to defend him: "Pence won overall, but lost with Trump"
— John Harwood (@JohnJHarwood) October 5, 2016
It appears that Donald Trump is actually livid with his own vice presidential pick for turning in a better debate performance than him. The level of narcissism that would lead to that response is breathtaking. It also reinforces the idea that Trump’s ego is ultimately more important to him than winning.
It’s also reported that Trump felt Pence didn’t defend him well enough against Kaine’s (rather effective) jabs. A point which, to be fair, is valid. Many times throughout the debate Pence seemed to want to avoid even speaking Trump’s name. When asked directly about one of Trump’s policies, more than once Pence changed the subject and turned to his own job performance. It’s unclear if Pence wanted the spotlight for himself or just found defending Trump’s words and ideas impossible.
John King reporting that someone from Trump inner sanctum says Pence for Pence (and not Trump) style not sitting well with Trump.
— Josh Dorner (@JoshDorner) October 5, 2016
The question now – one almost unthinkable for any presidential candidate not named Donald Trump – is whether there are serious discussions about removing Pence from the ticket this close to the election. The conventional wisdom would say it would be campaign suicide, but the convention wisdom doesn’t know Trump’s ego. Anything is possible when he feels slighted. And after that debate he’s stewing.
UPDATE: Hillary Clinton just dumped a whole bucket of salt into Trump’s wounds…
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) October 5, 2016
Feature image via YouTube