03:02 GMT +317 December 2018
Listen Live
    U.S. Vice President Mike Pence speaks to troops in a hangar at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan on Thursday, Dec. 21, 2017.

    Mike Drop? Trump Reportedly Considering Dumping Pence for 2020 Campaign

    © AP Photo / Mandel Ngan
    US
    Get short URL
    6144

    The Washington rumor mill is spinning again with theories that US President Donald Trump is considering replacing Vice President Mike Pence in his 2020 reelection bid, with a mounting consensus that Pence does not expand Trump’s base of support.

    On Monday, Trump hosted a 2020 strategy meeting with some of his advisors. According to Gabriel Sherman in Vanity Fair, one of the topics discussed at the meeting was Pence's viability in a 2020 race that is expected to draw candidates fiercely opposed to the current administration and whether Pence will add anything of real value to Trump's ticket in that context.

    "They're beginning to think about whether Mike Pence should be running again," a source told the publication, adding that new polling has proven that Pence does not widen the coalition of supporters of the president.

    In other words, Pence, who is known for his Christian religiosity, may be nothing more than a hanger-on to Trump, who already has a firm grasp on the Evangelical vote.

    When it comes to building up Trump's base, Pence "doesn't detract from it, but he doesn't add anything either," the source told Vanity Fair.

    "Trump has been very clear that he does not plan to replace Mike Pence and although you can't always take the presidents word, I think he's telling the truth this time," award-winning editorial cartoonist Ted Rall told Sputnik News. "Pence has been extremely loyal and knows were all the bodies are buried. I'm sure he'll be around for a second term."

    This is just the latest news indicating that Pence is standing on thin ice in the run-up to the 2020 race. The New York Times reported in November that Trump has asked his advisers whether Pence is trustworthy and that advisors outside of the administration are pushing for outgoing US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley to take Pence's slot. 

    While rumors about Pence's departure are emerging now, they follow a long string of reports about the impending departures of a number of officials. The Beltway press spent months speculating that Trump would fire Attorney General Jeff Sessions, which he eventually did. White House Chief of Staff John Kelly has also been rumored to have one foot out the door.

    According to Vanity Fair, the debate over Pence's political value to the administration has been fueled by Trump's "stalled search for a chief of staff to replace John Kelly."

    Kelly has yet to announce his resignation, however.

    One of the paper's sources says that Kelly has been telling Trump that Pence provides him no political value. "The theory," according to Vanity Fair, is that Kelly is frustrated with Pence's young chief of staff Nick Ayers, who appears to be gunning for Kelly's position.

    "Kelly has started to get more political, and he's whispering to Trump that Trump needs a running mate who can help him more politically," the outlet's source said.

    Related:

    Vice President Pence: US Won’t Lift Tariffs Until ‘China Changes Its Ways’
    Twitter Bashes Bolton's 'Giddy' Glance, Pence's 'Steely Glare' in Talks w/ Putin
    Mike Pence Says Disputed South China Sea Belongs to Nobody Amid US-China Feud
    Pence: Next Trump-Kim Summit to Go Ahead Without List of N Korean Nuclear Sites
    US Midterm Congressional Elections Choice Between Results, Resistance - Pence
    Trump and Pence Elevate Black Republicans and Jews for Jesus
    US Does Not Seek to Change Treaty Banning Nuclear Weapons in Space - Pence
    Mike Pence Roasted for Inviting "Christian" Rabbi to Pray for Synagogue Victims
    VP Pence Says Migrant Caravan 'Funded From Outside,' Organized by Leftist Forces
    Pence Justifies Space Arms Race by Inflating China, Russia Threat - UCS
    Tags:
    Trump Administration, 2020 election, vice president, Mike Pence
    Community standardsDiscussion
    Comment via FacebookComment via Sputnik