Pence Runs Away From the Circus 

Karen Pence and former U.S. Vice President Mike Pence leave the stage after he suspended his campaign for president during the Republican Jewish Coalition's Annual Leadership Summit at The Venetian Resort Las Vegas on October 28, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

“A national political campaign is better than the best circus ever heard of,” H.L. Mencken famously wrote, “with a mass baptism and a couple of hangings thrown in.”

Unless you’re in the stands cheering and jeering, how much fun you are likely to have at the big top depends on whether you are one of the ones getting dunked or the ones being dangled. And last week, it was former Vice President Mike Pence’s turn to swing.

The good news for Pence was that this time, the hanging was figurative, not the real one his foes once demanded.

In its coverage of Pence’s exit, Politico sneered at how the holy roller ended his campaign in Las Vegas, “Sin City,” and congratulated itself for a piece from last week originally headlined “Inside Mike Pence’s Sad, Dwindling Presidential Campaign.” The 3,896-word saga about Pence’s woes was accompanied by a photo of a puny, bored-looking crowd, which the writer bragged “went viral, reducing [Pence] to a punchline on late-night TV.”

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