Though with far less frequency than is reserved for President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence has also been targeted with disparaging smears against his character by the ideological left, often in regard to mischaracterized “fake news” about his Christian views on the LGBT community and women.
Those false tropes were put forward once again on Thursday when Democratic California Sen. Kamala Harris, a 2020 contender for her party’s nomination, took a swipe at the vice president and called one of his personal habits — not meeting alone with women who aren’t his wife — both “ridiculous” and “outrageous.”
Evidently, avoiding rumors of an affair and respecting his wife is grounds for criticism of the VP.
Harris smears Pence as anti-LGBT, anti-women
Harris appeared on MSNBC to discuss a number of topics, but the segment concluded with a question about where the senator stood with regard to Pence in relation to other 2020 candidates. Specifically, she was asked if she was of the view that he is a “decent guy,” as former Vice President Joe Biden said, or of the opinion that he is “not an honorable person,” as Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren surmised.
“Well, I disagree with most of what the vice president stands for when he makes decisions about our LGBTQ community in a way that doesn’t understand they should be entitled to full equality and all rights under the laws as any other American,” Harris said.
She went on: “I disagree with him when he suggests that it’s not possible to have meetings with women alone, by himself. I think that’s ridiculous, the idea that you would deny a professional woman the opportunity to have a meeting with the vice president of the United States is outrageous. So I have many points of disagreement with the vice president.”
Getting the facts straight
The trouble is that both of those examples of “disagreements” Harris provided are unmoored from the truth and are instead grounded in lies that have been perpetuated by the “fake news” media.
Pence has never suggested that LGBT individuals be denied the same fundamental human rights or equality as any other Americans, nor has he ever suggested that he would deny a professional woman the opportunity to meet with him. He has merely indicated that he does not hold closed-door meetings or dine alone with women who are not his wife, a virtuous precaution that has no doubt saved him from false allegations of harassment or worse.
The vice president’s senior aide and press secretary, Alyssa Farah, took to Twitter in his defense and pushed back against Harris’ smear of her boss. Farah tweeted:
Hi, @SenKamalaHarris: I’m a female Senior Advisor to Mike Pence & am wondering why you are repeating this false claim? He’s elevated women to positions of leadership throughout his career & relies on their advice & counsel. Get your facts straight. https://t.co/oCTHKQpcdn
— Alyssa Farah (@VPPressSec) March 14, 2019
Considering the many recent reports of how Harris exploited an affair with then-San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown to bolster her political prospects in the early days of her burgeoning career, Harris has little room to talk with regard to the way Pence chooses to protect both his wife and himself from the inevitable trouble that comes along with adulterous affairs or whispers of impropriety.
Harris should indeed get her facts straight, as she is woefully wrong in asserting that just because Pence won’t dine alone with another woman means that he also won’t provide opportunities for professional women in the workplace. His long history in public life demonstrates otherwise, and he should not be subjected to shaming simply for doing what he feels necessary to safeguard his relationship with the love of his life, second lady Karen Pence.