MSNBC Warns of ‘Danger’ From ‘Extreme’ ‘Sycophant-in-Chief’ Mike Pence

On her MSNBC show on Thursday, host Andrea Mitchell sounded the alarm for her left-wing audience as she warned: “Well, President Trump, of course, is making headlines every day, every hour, but Vice President Mike Pence largely flying under the radar....Joining me now is staff writer of The New Yorker, Jane Mayer, who wrote the story, ‘The Danger of President Pence’...”

Teeing up Mayer to promote her nasty hit piece against the Vice President, Mitchell fretted: “...people, you know, talk about Donald Trump and they talk about Mike Pence as a more conventional Republican, a more mainstream Republican....If there were impeachment, 25th Amendment, what would a President Pence be like?”

 

 

Mayer ominously declared: “I went to Indiana and I spent a couple months, really I interviewed 60 people or so about him, and came away worried, I have to say.” She proceeded to rant about his ties to special interests:

He is a candidate who’s been sponsored by some of the biggest and most powerful private interests in the country, almost from the beginning of his career. He’s not very independent from them....And you know, many people who voted for Trump thought they were getting something different, something of an outsider who was unorthodox and a populist, who promised that he would not be corrupt because he was so rich. But his vice president is really very much, very closely tied to the richest interests in the Republican Party.

And what of the Democratic Party’s ties to left-wing billionaires George Soros and Tom Steyer?

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The only thing more terrifying to Mayer than Pence’s donor base was his conservative ideology:

And he’s also very different politically. I mean, he’s a strong social conservative, maybe as extreme right as you can get in the Republican Party in terms of being anti-abortion, a long history of positions on women’s rights that are pretty eye-opening, and on homosexuality, that has caused a lot of controversy.

After Mitchell wondered if Pence and Trump were “close,” Mayer managed to get in one more jab at the VP: “But what he [Pence] does to get along with Trump is he flatters him all the time. He's very sycophantish. And in fact, Joel Goldstein, who’s an expert on the vice presidency, told me that he calls him the sycophant-in-chief.” Mitchell replied: “That says a lot.”

The biased exchange was brought to viewers by HomeLight and Consumer Cellular.

Here is a full transcript of the October 19 segment:

12:18 PM ET

ANDREA MITCHELL: Well, President Trump, of course, is making headlines every day, every hour, but Vice President Mike Pence largely flying under the radar. Pence stands by the President, quote, “mustering a devotional gaze rarely seen since the days of Nancy Reagan.” That’s a quote from a new article in The New Yorker. Joining me now is staff writer of The New Yorker, Jane Mayer, who wrote the story, “The Danger of President Pence” for The New Yorker. She’s also the author of the book Dark Money, among other – other major books.

Jane, tell us about Mike Pence. Because people, you know, talk about Donald Trump and they talk about Mike Pence as a more conventional Republican, a more mainstream Republican. What if? What if? If there were impeachment, 25th Amendment, what would a President Pence be like?

JANE MAYER [THE NEW YORKER]: Well, that’s what we were trying to look at. Would this be, you know, from the point of view of some people, an improvement? And so, I went to Indiana and I spent a couple months, really I interviewed 60 people or so about him, and came away worried, I have to say. He is a candidate who’s been sponsored by some of the biggest and most powerful private interests in the country, almost from the beginning of his career. He’s not very independent from them. In particular, one of the people I talked to was Steve Bannon, who said to me that if Mike Pence were to become president, he was concerned he’d be owned by the Koch brothers, the – Charles and David Koch, the huge billionaire sponsors.

MITCHELL: This is the Steve Bannon who’s owned by the Mercers.

MAYER: Well, it’s true, maybe he knows what being owned is about. But at any rate, he was worried about Pence’s independence. And you know, many people who voted for Trump thought they were getting something different, something of an outsider who was unorthodox and a populist, who promised that he would not be corrupt because he was so rich. But his vice president is really very much, very closely tied to the richest interests in the Republican Party. And he’s also very different politically. I mean, he’s a strong social conservative, maybe as extreme right as you can get in the Republican Party in terms of being anti-abortion, a long history of positions on women’s rights that are pretty eye-opening, and on homosexuality, that has caused a lot of controversy.

MITCHELL: Well, it’s almost as though they’re the ying and yang of Republican politics, although Donald Trump has, since the primaries, really changed himself into someone who is championed by the evangelical wing of the party, despite his background, despite his Democratic past, with a big “D.”

MAYER: Well, Pence really helped, obviously, to bring around the evangelical voters in the party. But one of the things that I write about in the story is that sort of behind the scenes, according to people who are inside, sometimes Trump kind of makes fun of Pence’s religiousity.

MITCHELL: Still?

MAYER: He has been known to say, when people come from visiting with Pence and then comes to Trump’s office, “Did Mike make you pray?” Kind of making fun of him, you know, ribbing his religiousity a little.

MITCHELL: Are they close in the way that Obama and Biden were in the – you know, Clinton and Gore pretended to be close but really weren’t, because despite being two boomers, there was a certain tension. Somewhat because of Hillary Clinton in the middle. And tension over who did what. I think Obama and Biden really were very, very close. What about Trump and Pence?

MAYER: You know, I have to say, even as a reporter who spent this much time, it’s hard to know for sure. But it – I’m told that Trump feels that the choice of Pence was one of the best decisions he made. Pence, meanwhile, has not caused controversy for Trump. They haven’t been feuding openly. But what he does to get along with Trump is he flatters him all the time. He's very sycophantish. And in fact, Joel Goldstein, who’s an expert on the vice presidency, told me that he calls him the sycophant-in-chief.

MITCHELL: That says – that says a lot. Interesting reporting. Thank you very much, Jane Mayer in The New Yorker.  


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