Facebook Live session on July 14, Gingrich discussed parts of the thorough vetting process when selecting a Vice Presidential nominee. He explained an important variable considered beyond the political relationship: the interpersonal relationship between President and Vice President candidates. Indiana Governor Mike Pence, who appears more gentlemanly and is a sharp Conservative, balances the ticket and maintains a vibrant interpersonal relationship with Trump.On August 4, in North Carolina, eleven-years-old Matthew Schricker asked Pence a question:
“I’ve been watching the news lately and I’ve been noticing lately that you’ve been kind of softening up on Mr. Trump’s policies and words. Is this going to be your role in the administration?”
After a joke and complementing Matthew, Pence explained he agrees with Donald Trump’s policy positions, but Pence emphasized his major stylistic differences. Trump is a “charismatic” and is a “larger-than-life person.” Although his style has recently changed, Trump would often yell at rallies and avoid teleprompters. Adding Pence to the ticket “bring[s] balance to the ticket.” Pence might not use a teleprompter but is usually calm and composed. In instances where there are protestors or when a mother is critical of Trump, Pence replies saying, “That’s what freedom looks like, and that’s what freedom sounds like.” Trump, in contrast, is notorious for protesters escorting. The stylistic contrast and interpersonal connection between the two candidates make for a great bridge for conservatives who weren’t set on Trump—much like Gingrich suggested.
But time and time again, Trump campaigns without Pence.
Donald was in Pennsylvania with his daughter Ivanka—without Mike Pence—to discuss reforming tax policy and child-care policy. Policy detail has been a criticism of the campaign. Campaigning in Pennsylvania, a “battleground state” last won by Republicans in 1988, should have full support from both candidates. But Pence was nowhere to be found.
Pence was also missing when Donald Trump spoke in Baltimore at the National Guard Association. Trump contrasted himself to the disdainful features of Hillary Clinton. Maryland recently elected Republican Governor Larry Hogan and many Marylanders are strong Trump supporters. Donald Trump would not have campaigned in Pennsylvania and Maryland if he did not think those states were winnable. But where was Pence?
Shouldn’t the running mate be at Trump’s side in Pennsylvania and Maryland? If Trump wants to gain conservative votes in swing states, Mike Pence should be there. After all, Pence’s initial goal, according to one of his advisers, is to “be doing the more conventional, party together,” work. But, perhaps, Ivanka is a better choice to gain moderate and female voters’ support.