God’s Plan for Mike Pence - The Atlantic


25 bookmarks. First posted by farley13 12 days ago.


God’s Plan for Mike Pence via
from twitter
yesterday by dinomite
No man can serve two masters, the Bible teaches, but Mike Pence is giving it his all. It’s a sweltering September afternoon in Anderson, Indiana, and the vice…
from instapaper
6 days ago by timwburch
Because God works in mysterious ways (or, at the very least, has a postmodern sense of humor), it was Donald J. Trump—gracer of Playboy covers, delighter of shock jocks, collector of mistresses—who descended from the mountaintop in the summer of 2016, GOP presidential nomination in hand, offering salvation to both Pence and the religious right. The question of whether they should wed themselves to such a man was not without its theological considerations. But after eight years of Barack Obama and a string of disorienting political defeats, conservative Christians were in retreat and out of options. So they placed their faith in Trump—and then, incredibly, he won.

In Pence, Trump has found an obedient deputy whose willingness to suffer indignity and humiliation at the pleasure of the president appears boundless. When Trump comes under fire for describing white nationalists as “very fine people,” Pence is there to assure the world that he is actually a man of great decency.

Pence has so far showed absolute deference to the president—and as a result he has become one of the most influential figures in the White House, with a broad portfolio of responsibilities and an unprecedented level of autonomy. But for all his aw-shucks modesty, Pence is a man who believes heaven and Earth have conspired to place him a heartbeat—or an impeachment vote—away from the presidency. At some crucial juncture in the not-too-distant future, that could make him a threat to Trump.

In recent years, the religious right had been abruptly forced to pivot from offense to defense in the culture wars—abandoning the “family values” crusades and talk of “remoralizing America,” and focusing its energies on self-preservation. Conservative Christians had lost the battles over school prayer, sex education, and pornography censorship, and the Supreme Court was poised to legalize same-sex marriage. Meanwhile, a widespread decline in churchgoing and religious affiliation had contributed to a growing anxiety among conservative believers.

Conway had told him to talk about “stuff outside of politics,” and suggested he show his eagerness to learn from the billionaire. “I knew they would enjoy each other’s company,” Conway told me, adding, “Mike Pence is someone whose faith allows him to subvert his ego to the greater good.”

True to form, Pence spent much of their time on the course kissing Trump’s ring. You’re going to be the next president of the United States, he said. It would be the honor of a lifetime to serve you. Afterward, he made a point of gushing to the press about Trump’s golf game. “He beat me like a drum,” Pence confessed, to Trump’s delight.

Campaign operatives discovered that anytime Trump did something outrageous or embarrassing, they could count on Pence to clean it up. “He was our top surrogate by far,” said one former senior adviser to Trump. “He was this mild-mannered, uber-Christian guy with a Midwestern accent telling voters, ‘Trump is a good man; I know what’s in his heart.’ It was very convincing—you wanted to trust him. You’d be sitting there listening to him and thinking, Yeah, maybe Trump is a good man!”

It’s been reported that Pence sent Trump a letter saying he needed time to decide whether he could stay with the campaign. But in fact, according to several Republicans familiar with the situation, he wasn’t just thinking about dropping out—he was contemplating a coup. Within hours of The Post’s bombshell, Pence made it clear to the Republican National Committee that he was ready to take Trump’s place as the party’s nominee. Such a move just four weeks before Election Day would have been unprecedented—but the situation seemed dire enough to call for radical action.

But the president has also enjoyed overwhelming support from rank-and-file conservative Christians. He won an astonishing 81 percent of white evangelicals’ votes, more than any Republican presidential candidate on record. And while his national approval rating hovers below 40 percent, poll after poll finds his approval rating among white evangelicals in the high 60s. The fact that such an ungodly president could retain a firm grip on the religious right has been the source of much soul-searching—and theological debate—within the movement.

Consider just one data point: In 2011, a poll by the Public Religion Research Institute found that only 30 percent of white evangelicals believed “an elected official who commits an immoral act in their personal life can still behave ethically and fulfill their duties in their public and professional life.” By 2016, that number had risen to 72 percent. “This is really a sea change in evangelical ethics,” Robert P. Jones, the head of the institute and the author of The End of White Christian America, told me. “They have moved to an ends-justifies-the means style of politics that would have been unimaginable before this last campaign.”

For many of the attendees, though, the most memorable moment came when Pence stood to speak. “I’ve been with [Trump] alone in the room when the decisions are made. He and I have prayed together,” Pence said. “This is somebody who shares our views, shares our values, shares our beliefs.” Pence didn’t waste time touting his own credentials. With this crowd, he didn’t need to. Instead, as always, he lavished praise on the president.
republicans  DonaldTrump  MikePence  evangelical 
9 days ago by jbertsche
Will the vice president—and the religious right—be rewarded for their embrace of Donald Trump? No man can serve two masters, the Bible teaches, but Mike Pence is giving it his all. via Pocket
IFTTT  Pocket 
9 days ago by Werderbach
No man can serve two masters, the Bible teaches, but Mike Pence is giving it his all. It’s a sweltering September afternoon in Anderson, Indiana, and the vice…
from instapaper
10 days ago by liebo7
Will the vice president—and the religious right—be rewarded for their embrace of Donald Trump? No man can serve two masters, the Bible teaches, but Mike Pence is giving it his all. via Pocket
IFTTT  Pocket 
10 days ago by archizoo
No man can serve two masters, the Bible teaches, but Mike Pence is giving it his all. It’s a sweltering September afternoon in Anderson, Indiana, and the vice…
from instapaper
11 days ago by Aetles
RT : yes, he's as self-righteous and ambitious as you think, and entirely lacking moral courage
from twitter
11 days ago by madamjujujive
Will the vice president—and the religious right—be rewarded for their embrace of Donald Trump? No man can serve two masters, the Bible teaches, but Mike Pence is giving it his all. via Pocket
IFTTT  Pocket  instapaper 
11 days ago by drewcaldwell
No man can serve two masters, the Bible teaches, but Mike Pence is giving it his all. It’s a sweltering September afternoon in Anderson, Indiana, and the vice…
from instapaper
11 days ago by streicher
The graphic for this article is...upsetting.
from twitter
12 days ago by brchastain
No man can serve two masters, the Bible teaches, but Mike Pence is giving it his all. It’s a sweltering September afternoon in Anderson, Indiana, and the vice…
from instapaper
12 days ago by Shurs
No man can serve two masters, the Bible teaches, but Mike Pence is giving it his all. It’s a sweltering September afternoon in Anderson, Indiana, and the vice…
from instapaper
12 days ago by rothschi
God’s Plan for Mike Pence via Instapaper http://ift.tt/2AYvO34
IFTTT  Instapaper 
12 days ago by dajeskey
Will the vice president—and the religious right—be rewarded for their embrace of Donald Trump? No man can serve two masters, the Bible teaches, but Mike Pence is giving it his all. via Pocket
IFTTT  Pocket 
12 days ago by egwillim
Will the vice president—and the religious right—be rewarded for their embrace of Donald Trump? No man can serve two masters, the Bible teaches, but Mike Pence is giving it his all.
Archive  pocket 
12 days ago by cronco
MAG: Pence was 'contemplating coup' to take Trump place as nominee... http://ift.tt/2AYvO34
IFTTT  Feedly 
12 days ago by Buffalo_Goku