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Can Pence be Trump’s greatest threat … and Cheney his greatest asset?

Can Pence be Trump’s greatest threat … and Cheney his greatest asset?

Now that the 2024 presidential race is off to a premature start, how about a little long-range armchair speculating?  There is way too much time between now and November of 2024 to make any sort of rational predictions – but a little bank-shot fun speculation never hurts.

Vice President Pence

While I understand that conventional wisdom suggests that former Vice President Pence – as an enemy of the MAGA crowd — is not a favorite to win the Republican presidential nomination in 2024.  Where would he get his support given the fact that he would have the hostile opposition of President Trump’s loyal base – meaning those who will vote for Trump in the primaries no matter who his opponents are?   

On the other hand, I do not believe Trump’s base is as large as Democrats and Trump suggest.  Some say as much as 40 percent of the GOP voters.  I say, no more than 15 percent and sinking.  He may look strong today, but that is likely to weaken as other names come into play.  I know too many supposed diehard Trump voters here in Florida who would vote for Governor DeSantis over Trump.

Pence’s potential for success would probably rely on all other candidates staying out of the race – especially Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.  That is not going to happen.

I am not postulating the notion that Pence could be Trump’s greatest threat based on Pence beating Trump – although I think he would in a one-on-one situation.  But as the person who has spent four years inside the inner circle, Pence knows a lot.  Were he to strategically unload on Trump in a campaign, he could be the most important witness for the prosecution in the court-of-public-opinion — and perhaps in one or more courts-of-law.

Of course, Pence would have to shed a bit of his nice guy image – but I can see him doing that.  So, far he has not.  But I believe that in view of how Trump has treated Pence, the former Vice President has a lot of potential getting even to do.  In an aggressive tell-all campaign, Pence could do more damage to Trump than all the witnesses in the Capitol Hill riot hearings combined.

Congresswoman Liz Cheney

Congresswoman Liz Cheney has committed her future to ensuring that Trump never again takes up residency in the White House.  It is more than a passion. It is an obsession.

There has been some speculation that she would mount a presidential campaign of her own as a means of bringing down Trump.  That would be a fool’s mission.  She has been essentially blackballed from the GOP.  It is less about her attacks on Trump than her expanding attacks across the entire GOP.  Her chance of beating Trump in a one-on-one — or even emerging with more than a single digit vote count – is slim to none.

Were she to get into the Republican primary races, she is arguably more likely to help Trump.  If it were a one-on-one race with Trump – which is extremely unlikely – she would never get enough votes to defeat him in any primary.  Trump would win handily.  If there were multiple candidates, she would only further divide the vote and give Trump a better chance.

Summary

The best situation for Trump could be Pence staying out and Cheney getting in.

If Trump does announce his candidacy in the near future, it is sad news for the American people.  It means no letup from the incessant 24/7 Trump-bashing news – especially with so-called news platforms like MSNBC that have Trump on an endless loop.  Democrats love to keep Trump in the headlines – and so does Trump.  It is we the people who must suffer Trump fatigue.

So, there ‘tis. 

About The Author

Larry Horist

So,there‘tis… The opinions, perspectives and analyses of Larry HoristLarry Horist is a businessman, conservative writer and political strategist with an extensive background in economics and public policy. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman. He has served as a consultant to the Nixon White House and travelled the country as a spokesman for President Reagan’s economic reforms. He has testified as an expert witness before numerous legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress. Horist has lectured and taught courses at numerous colleges and universities, including Harvard, Northwestern, DePaul universities, Hope College and his alma mater, Knox College. He has been a guest on hundreds of public affairs talk shows, and hosted his own program, “Chicago In Sight,” on WIND radio. Horist was a one-time candidate for mayor of Chicago and served as Executive Director of the City Club of Chicago, where he led a successful two-year campaign to save the historic Chicago Theatre from the wrecking ball. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He is praised by readers for his style, substance and sense of humor. According to one reader, Horist is the “new Charles Krauthammer.” He is actively semi-retired in Boca Raton, Florida where he devotes his time to writing. So, there ‘tis is Horist’s signature sign off.

14 Comments

  1. Mike

    Pence turned his back on the people of this country. Even if Mike offered happy endings as please vote for me. I will never trust him or even consider voting for him. Now is this current election is not a investigated and fixed. real soon we will never have elections again. At lease honest elections. Since 2008 elections have been rigger. just look at blue states the counties around Chicago just turned blue solid blue.

    Reply
    • Pythias

      I will not vote for Trump again. He has some good points and will take action, but he is just not fit to be a President. I will not vote for Pence either even though he did not buckle under Trump. Pence is too much of a whimp. He cannot handle adversity and take forceful action. He seems too timid and too hesitant to take action. My choice is Desantis, governor of Florida. He is a man of action and decision and will not tolerate any nonsense. My only problem is that I feel that women should have control over their bodies and have access to abortions up until a fetus is viable outside the womb.

      Reply
    • larry Horist

      Mike and Pythias ….. I will not vote for Trump in the primary. I did not in the past, and see less reason to do so in the future. I would vote for Pence if he was the only option … but I have be all in for DeSantis as you know if you read past commentaries.

      Reply
    • frank stetson

      Pence can’t win, both sides have a serious dislike. Yours for what he did, ours for how he did it and what he’s doing about it now.

      Trump can’t win, but needs the money, he’s in.

      Cheney is obsessed, in a good way, in cutting the cord on this boat anchor, Trump, a bravery to stand up and say something that Larry has won’t do because he does not like the personality but loves the laws, policies, and programs…..and feels Trump is in the rearview as he writes about him everyday…………..

      Reply
      • Tom

        Frank, as I wrote in Larry’s blog on “Elon Musk Twitter Deal Suspicious” (which I hope you will read the new comment I sent to you on 11/15 and give me your opinion) I think Trump’s pursuits lie more in the area of legal protections of the POTUS than in needing money. Yesterday it was revealed by the Walker campaign that they were only getting 10 cents on a dollar for every contribution received by Trump in Walker’s behalf. Walker complained to Trump and Trump changed it to 50/50. Other GOP are using Walker’s race the same way with the 10 for you 90 for me scheme and are now revising their scheme to 50/50 so as not to look bad. Please read my new comment to you on Musk and give me your opinion. Thanks!

        Reply
        • frank stetson

          Yes, Trump likes to keep his money. He hesitates to even spend it on his campaign. But he has no problem using it to support his lavish and opulent lifestyle. Of course he shorted Walker.

          Point is he has been raising money on The Big Lie since before 11/20 and big time post 1/6/2021. Hundreds of millions to the non-candidate.

          The real question is: if Trump is in the rearview, how did he make the headline of Larry’s latest piece?

          Reply
        • larry Horist

          Ton … the Elon Musk blog article was not mine.

          Reply
  2. JR

    While this column has some merit, it is misplaced with the Georgia run off upcoming. Giving oxygen to Republican division at this time especially does not help the unity necessary to help Walker succeed. In fact unity of party over the next 3 weeks is exactly what is needed to thwart the Dems in the Senate.
    So there tis….

    Reply
    • frank stetson

      You got that right. Plus, we get to see if Walker is a politician and pivots on Trump and Trumpism given it was a loser most other places OR he doubles down on division thinking the Trumplicants in the South will rise again.

      Reply
  3. Tom

    I agree with you Larry, Trump’s sun is setting. My metric is simply the lack of numbers in the comments going rah rah bonkers for Trump. But, as an Independent/Umaffiliated voter, I suspect the rah rah all in DeSantis is much in the state of FL. I speculate that he needs to build a network quickly if he intends to run, and further speculate he is doing some of this but not sure it is at breakneck speed. My voting block view is most likely he is Trump with polish. And Pence, while being a very by the book kind of guy, he just does not have stage presence. When Pence speaks, its like a boring lecture in a college lecture hall. Stage presence and the ability to communicate passion in your speeches is needed to gain traction. DeSantis has this over Pence in boatloads. I would vote for DeSantis before Pence any day. But I am being academic right now, and not all-in at this point.

    Speculation 2: I agree with you that Pence probably has much built up hostility for the way Trump treated him and is the arrow in the Trump heel. I speculate a possible alliance between DeSantis and Pence. Pence was very loyal, and DeSantis would benefit from Pence experience, loyalty, administrative and constitutional skills, and the dirt on Trump which he could threaten Trump with if Trump attempts to release dirt on DeSantis. Wouldn’t that be fun for Joe Biden!

    Speculation 3: I agree that Cheney would be on a fools mission to run but I do speculate that she would get more than single digit vote count. I speculate that she will help any GOP non-Trump candidate with their platform, do speaking engagement fund raisers about what all she saw during the commission work, and could damage Trump in navigating GOP young and Independents away from Trumpism – and the course correction would only take a few degrees. She could be a good consultant to some GOP hopefuls and very effective working in the background. I agree with your analysis that she would help Trump in a multi-field contest and your earlier analysis that the larger the field the less votes Trump will need which will of course come from his hard core base of about 15% =/-5%

    I agree with your summary. It was interesting when CNN admitted they made a big mistake in 2015-2016 covering Trump. They thought Trump was great stooge play comedy that could never get elected. Many media thought this. They later in 2017 admitted what a blunder that was. They admitted to giving Trump a lot of free coverage as a stooge and in the end, CNN were the stooges. Media would be wise (but they probably won’t be) to limit their coverage of Trump. Let it to the Dems to run commercials on his POTUS failures and his personality/narcissism.

    Good blog. Speculations are fun when done properly upfront.

    Reply
  4. William F Simmons

    So lately your articles have become more about the lack of support for Trump. Personally, see you falling into the Democratic trap. It all goes back to the top of the party. We both know those two people are spinless. The mainstream tards are pounding the clueless people of America with untruths and you writing this stuff are helping their cause. DeSantis won because he used Trumps blueprint for dealing with these haters of freedom. The win is a positive. We win the electoral votes in each state that follows the guide. We are getting there. We are winning. Time to unite and work on voter ID and integrity. This battle needs all hands-on deck and I want Trump on our team!

    Reply
  5. Den

    President Trump should put forth the positive accomplishments he had that never reached the public awareness. Pence worked with Fauci and Birx and she said they held back or changed information after briefing the President so President Trump wasn’t provided with all the accurate information on the vaccines; for a military person to withhold that from the Commander in Chief seems like it should have a punishment attached to it. Pence and Paul Ryan thought they’d step into the Presidency and the V-P if they let Trump be impeached in my opinion. I think many of these people were old Republican establishment gate keepers to prevent the President from being successful, dare anyone try to change their lucrative controls. I think when the General that was Pence’s Chief of Staff said he would support President Trump in his re-election 2024 and that was after the capital breach 1/6 that speaks volumes to me and I think he knew what was happening more than most. Pelosi/FBI/Pence/McConnell/McCarthy/Schumer/Capital Police should all be investigated for their part/planning involvement in the Capital breach. Pelosi said that was what they were waiting for and she had her daughters film crew there to document, your bosses need to see all of the 14000hours of security footage, that is the American People that you All work for and it needs to happen now. Publish it on Public TV since we all help fund it.

    Reply
  6. RICHARD

    TRUMP WILL WIN, HE IS THE BEST FOR OUR COUNTRY. HE PROVED THIS TIME AND TIME AGAIN. THE REST ARE JUST POSERS, NOT FIT TO GOVERN US, WE SEE THIS WITH DELUSIONAL BIDEN.
    TRUMP LOVES THIS COUNTRY, WITH HIM IT IS AMERICA FIRST AND ALWAYS WAS.
    STOP BAD MOUTHING TRUMP, YOU ALL SOUND LIKE THE CORRUPT MEDIA. PARROTS THAT JUST REPEAT ALL THE LIES COMING OUT OF SENILE BIDENS MOUTH.
    WE NEED A STRONG . LEADER WITH BACKBONE,DECENCY AND HONOR.IT IS TIME AMERICANS GROW A STRONG BACKBONE AND STAN FOR OUR COUNTRY ONLY. JUST LOOK WHAT BIDEN IS DOING TO OUR MILITARY, HE MADE IT WEAK WITH ALL THIS WOKE AGENDA.PLUS THE DEMOCRATS ARE AGAINST AMERICA,WAKE UP BEFORE IT IS TO LATE.
    PENCE WILL NEVER BE PRESIDENT, TO WEAK , AND NOT STRONG FOR THIS COUNTRY.

    Reply
  7. Ac

    Pence was on the inside while Trump planned his shenanigans throughout his term. The former VP has the goods on Trump that Cheney wants and needs. He would monetize his knowledge in his book before donating it to the 1/6 Commission. He follows in lockstep with other Trump White House insiders. Besides, Pence has neither charisma nor GOP backing required. He may appear to have good character, but if Trump’s story says anything. It says the voters on the right value winning over a candidate’s character.
    Cheney has the intelligence and background for a run, but she too knows the Party does not have her back.
    DeSantis has to out Trump Trump at what Trump did in turning the right wing masses to his favor. Question is has the Party on the right learned anything from the last 6 years of Trump dominating every media cycle. Each day another outrageous thing said or his embellishing a conspiracy theory of his invention.
    Hopefully, only the small minority out of the whole GOP may persist in their doomed support for Trump. The majority of Republicans join we the rest of Americans and say, enough is enough. DJ Trump had the spot light brightest in all the world trained on his every move, because he provoked attention. However, no human is able to sustain that light’s intensity and revelation for long. The lights power comes from the people’s interest. When so much excess piles up there are no surprises left. Nothing Trump does or has done while in office with supposed authority shocks the public.
    Sadly, his toxicity has given us all immunity from becoming shocked and repulsed, as ordinarily society is supposed to be. He is over the top with audacity and do or say nothing impactful enough for accountability’s sake. We the people would not let slide with any one the likes of that which Trump has done. Yet, he manages to stay free and continue going his way trampling over previously honored sensitivity.
    Who the GOP, Democratic Party, or any other would be party brings to primary and choose for their candidate for President should be of great character. Political differences in philosophy be that what it is, the American way for a robust democracy. Trumpian characteristics have been proven as ineffective, detrimental to all that is sacred in a strong determined democratic republic.
    At 24 months out from decision day 2024, it’s anyones guess how the field of play will lay. There is a long road in it for all.

    Reply

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