The dirty business of politics in the 21st century

I don’t know how old you need to be to have heart the following saying.

damned if you do and damned if you don’t

Of course this phrase has the dictionary definition of an unwinnable situation. I have been watching the drama play out in Washington DC and it is difficult to know what the actual politicians think. I see news clips or bloggers talking about how in private the politicians are saying there was no fraud in the presidential election but nothing on the record.

I do rather wonder if this is partly because those politicians or vice president are in an unwinnable situation but one with rather serious consequences.

It is one thing to be the unpopular kid on the play ground who has the fear a bully might take away your lunch money or generally harass you. Can you imagine in what position the politicians are in. They know that there is a republican base of approximately 74 million people who seem to be supporting President Trump in all he does. Just a week ago, a pretty small group of those supporters took their beliefs quite a bit farther and occupied the capital. The group that went all the way and broke into the capital appear to be more hard core than most. They must be in order to travel from their home, most of which were outside of DC, just to attend this event and create this chaos.

Now imagine that some of these people live in your home district or somewhere in your state. I can only imagine that one reason the politicians are so quiet about their Trump opinions is that they can imagine a lifetime of having a flaming bag of poop on their door step, cars scratched in a parking lot or worse.

I think that all politicians on both sides of the aisle have this in their mind but what about vice President Mike Pence. Before January 6th, he had pretty much two choices.

  • Preside over electoral vote counting in ceremonial role
  • Somehow try and overturn the election in favor of Donald Trump

With these two choices he must have felt like he somehow won the worst job in the world – quite literally.

His current boss is not at all understanding of anyone who does not fulfill his requests. If Mike Pence fails to overturn the last possible opportunity overturn the election the chance his boss would show some understanding was slim. He might be fed to the “not so understanding” Trump base creating problems with disgruntled voters for years to come. The net result could be those flaming poop bags or toilet paper on Halloween at the minimum. If he looks behind door number two and somehow overturns the election, he will also be vilified by the non-Trump base, have the opportunity for toilet paper and such on Halloween. Door number two doesn’t seem any better but it gets worse.

If he had tried to fool with the electoral vote process, it would have eventually been overturned by the Supreme Court and go down in history as a traitor to democracy.

damned if you do and damned if you don’t

All of this hassle for this ceremonial vote counting. Is it any wonder that he did not choose to take up the congress request for him to implement the 25th amendment of removing Trump from office. He has been thrown under the bus while he was with his family in the capital building. He was probably concerned that “… even worse” might happen to him from the Trump supporters if he had removed the President even a few days early.

I think it is possible to not respect the vice president at all and still feel a small bit sorry for him. Not for his politics as he has pretty much determined his own future but that the constituents in this political game are taking this too far.

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