Any person of integrity who works in or around politics and government, becomes immediately aware of an inherent tension. This tension is between what they think is right, and what their job requires of them. This tension will inevitably occur repeatedly throughout a life in politics, and a prudent practitioner knows their battles must be picked carefully, as a failure to pick the right battles will earn you a quick exit from any position of influence. This is true from high-level Cabinet officials down to the lowest congressional staffer.
Nobody is more aware of this fact than former Vice President Mike Pence.
As the Trump era ends, I think it important to discuss the position Pence was in, and the wider issue that many Trump appointees faced.
I believe Pence’s letter of January 6 in which he declared that he did not have the authority to unilaterally reject the electoral votes of any state (and, according to the Donald Trump’s bizarre and unsupportable theory, handing him the election in spite of a clear loss), will eventually earn him a place in history as a dignified statesman and a patriot. Trump’s self-serving interpretation of the Constitution was a threat to the very foundation of our republic and had Pence went along with this charade, the damage to America would have been incalculable. But he didn’t.