Illustration for article titled Vice President Mike Pence Is a Crash Test Dummy for Trump
Photo: Jim Mone (AP Images)

Remember way back to 2017 when Vice President Mike Pence attended a football game between the Indianapolis Colts and the San Francisco 49ers just so he could walk out when players kneeled for the National Anthem?

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Pence would later tweet: “I left today’s Colts game because @POTUS and I will not dignify any event that disrespects our soldiers, our Flag, or our National Anthem.”

The football game wasn’t on any of the vice president’s itineraries. In fact, the press members who were following the vice president weren’t allowed to attend the game and were tipped off by one of the VP’s handlers that they wouldn’t be waiting in the van for the whole game as there might be an “early departure.”

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The whole thing was a show, a stunt to further the president’s message that fans should leave the game if players don’t stand for the flag.

It was an attempt by the president to rile up his base by using players as pawns and his VP as a crash test dummy.

And, Pence, who I’m still not convinced isn’t a Russian robot, complied because he’s a fucking idiot.

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On Tuesday, the vice president visited the Mayo Clinic and didn’t wear a face mask in the renowned Rochester, Minn., facility, surely at the insistence of President Trump, who has been anxiously pushing to reopen the economy during a global pandemic.

Not only is it Mayo Clinic’s policy that everyone on the premises wear a mask, but they even provide them for those who don’t have one. Yet VP Pence refused to wear one, surely hoping to appear like some kind of hero and instead just ended up looking like a goofy who can’t follow orders unless his high commander has given them. The Mayo Clinic even tweeted not to blame Pence’s stupidity on them as they “informed @VP of the masking policy prior to his arrival today,” the center wrote on Twitter and then later deleted, probably realizing that they’d thrown his ass all the way under the bus.

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But there he was, barefaced in the blood and plasma donation center inside the building surrounded by everyone else wearing masks.

From CNN:

The Mayo Clinic briefed Pence’s team in the last several days about the clinic’s policy requiring face masks, a person involved in planning the visit told CNN. The briefing came after the White House reached out last week about a potential visit. The person said when the clinic told the White House about the policy, it wasn’t clear whether Pence would wear a mask.

When Pence and the team, including reporters, arrived at the clinic, personnel from the facility had masks available for the group, including Pence. During the tour, the rest of the entourage wore masks except Pence.

Another source familiar with discussions said it is clear that — despite what the vice president said in defending himself and not wearing a mask — Pence’s staff understands now it was a mistake. News reports after the visit focused on whether he wore a mask instead of the work being done at the Mayo Clinic, and Pence’s staff believes they should have made sure he wore one to avoid such a news cycle, the source said.

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Pence wasn’t all the way stupid; he reportedly didn’t shake hands and instead elbow-bumped folks, but this could’ve been because his wife wasn’t there.

But he was mask-less and breathing in all that Mayo Clinic air unfiltered as he “conferred with hospital administrators and spoke with a Mayo Clinic employee who was donating plasma after being diagnosed with Covid-19 at the end of March,” CNN reports.

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But Pence’s reason for not wearing a mask might’ve been dumber than not wearing a mask.

“As vice president of the United States I’m tested for the coronavirus on a regular basis, and everyone who is around me is tested for the coronavirus,” he said.

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“Since I don’t have the coronavirus, I thought it’d be a good opportunity for me to be here, to be able to speak to these researchers, these incredible health care personnel and look them in the eye and say thank you,” he said.

Does Pence wear his masks over his eyes? Why couldn’t he wear a mask and still look people in the eye? And what does getting regularly tested for the coronavirus have to do with anything? All that says is that you don’t have it, yet. WTF is wrong with this administration?

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On April 13, the Mayo Clinic updated their website to note it was requiring “all patients and visitors to wear a face covering or mask to help slow the spread of COVID-19.”

“Patients and visitors are asked to bring their own face covering or mask to wear. If a patient or visitor does not have a mask, Mayo Clinic will provide one,” the website reads, CNN reports.

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But Crash Test Dummy Pence is just following his commander’s lead as President Trump also refuses to wear a mask—but that’s just because he doesn’t want mask lines all in his orange makeup.

“I don’t think I’m going to be doing it,” Trump said when asked about wearing a mask. “Wearing a face mask as I greet presidents, prime ministers, dictators, kings, queens—I just don’t see it.”

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You know what else the president and vice president aren’t going to be able to see? The future if they keep fucking around with the Rona without a mask. In the words of philosopher Benita Butrell, “You didn’t hear it from me.”

Senior Editor @ The Root, boxes outside my weight class, when they go low, you go lower.

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