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I think Pence has been one of the most craven, craw-thumping vice Presidents ever, but I think it is wrong to accuse him of cowardice on this occasion. Trump tried to bully him into invalidating the election result, but he stuck to his guns and his constitutional role. He did what was necessary, perhaps the bare minimum necessary, but nevertheless performed the constitutional requirements of his role in the certification of the election result.

You can argue that he should have invoked the 25th. Amendment, but that is a separate argument. Perhaps he consulted, behind the scenes, with some cabinet members. It didn't help that those most critical of Trump's performance resigned their cabinet posts, and thereby avoided all responsibility and reduced the chances of an attempt to invoke the 25th. succeeding.

If there is one thing worse than invoking the 25th., it is seeking to invoke it and failing to secure a cabinet majority. Trump would have trumpeted that as exoneration. This way the cabinet and the GOP own Trump and his behaviour completely.

Some pragmatists will argue there is little point in removing him days before Biden's inauguration, but that is not the point. There is a principle involved, and without impeachment or the 25th. being invoked, Trump's behaviour will be legitimised as the new normal. He will be able to run on the same platform in 2024. With 45% of Republicans supporting the Capital Hill invasion, that should divide the GOP nicely down the middle.

The Democrats now have a great opportunity to keep the stain of the invasion on the GOP brand. They now have the opportunity to retain their majorities in the mid-terms and increase them in 2024 if Trump is still running. Kamala Harris can wish for no better opponent, guaranteed to divide the GOP. The nation was divided. Now its just the GOP.

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by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Jan 11th, 2021 at 06:58:05 PM EST

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