On Monday, Mike Pence criticized Donald Trump for dining with Nick Fuentes, a White supremacist and Holocaust denier, and Kanye West, a rapper who has recently expressed a variety of antisemitic opinions.
But he also attempted to alter some of history in the process. Pence claimed in an interview with NewsNation that President Trump made a mistake by giving a seat at the table to a Holocaust denier, an antisemite, and a member of the white supremacist movement.
Good news thus far, But Pence continued.
Donald Trump is not an antisemite, in my opinion. I don’t think he’s a bigot or a racist, Pence stated. “If he was, I wouldn’t have been his vice president.” Which, well, is somewhat questionable in all honesty.
* Trump said that “many good individuals, on both sides” of the 2017 Charlottesville, Virginia, riots that were started by White nationalists.
In a 2018 discussion with lawmakers, Trump criticized immigrants from “shithole countries” for coming to the US.
* Trump has called Covid-19 both the “Kung flu” and the “China virus” on numerous occasions.
* Trump spread the misconception that Barack Obama was not indeed born in the country and was therefore unable to serve as president. Additionally, Trump claimed that Kamala Harris was ineligible to serve as vice president.
I will never standby and allow people to legitimize extremists
Donald Trump is once again propping up antisemites and white supremacists. It’s not subtle and no one should tolerate it.
If you’re not speaking out you’re part of the problem.https://t.co/kmRxXexXaM
— Rep. Jason Crow (@RepJasonCrow) November 29, 2022
* Trump insisted that Mexico was sending “rapists” who were “bringing crime” and “carrying narcotics” into the US in his address announcing his candidacy for president in 2015.
* Trump claimed that a federal judge of Mexican ancestry could not be objective in a case due to the judge’s alleged hostility toward Trump’s proposal to construct a wall along the southern border. (The judge was an Indiana native.)
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* Amid a debate surrounding Elizabeth Warren’s claims of Native American ancestry, Trump referred to her as “Pocahontas.”
* Trump initially refrained from denouncing David Duke, a former KKK official who supported his presidential bid. (Trump claimed in the aftermath that he misheard the question and that he had renounced Duke “the day before [he was questioned] at a major conference.)
* Trump tweeted that four members of the Democratic House caucus who identify as minorities should “go back” to their home nations. Of the four, three were American citizens at birth.
* Trump once referred to an impeachment attempt as a “lynching.”
* During a general election debate in 2020, when asked about the Proud Boys, a group of White nationalists, Trump advised them to “stand back and stand by.”
There is more—a great deal more—but you get the idea. For years, both within and outside of the office, Trump has profited from racial prejudices. Most of the remarks above occurred when Pence was vice president and Trump was in the White House.
That record makes it impossible to avoid the conclusion that Trump was more than willing to use discriminatory language and racist stereotypes to advance what he believed to be his political interests.
Pence’s remarks on Monday are an effort to cover up his part in encouraging Trump’s actions while in the White House. The plain fact is that Pence served as Trump’s loyal deputy and frequently defended him from the myriad scandals he generated on his own.
It makes sense that Pence wants to change the past. Pence and Trump are no longer on speaking terms because of his unwillingness to support Trump’s effort to have the 2020 election results annulled. Trump is currently making his third attempt for the presidency, and Pence is moving forward with his campaign.
But it is abundantly evident from the record represented above that Trump’s decision to meet with a White nationalist throughout his time in public life is not the exception but the rule. And it includes the time Pence spent by his side.