In an op-ed for The Atlantic this Friday, political commentator and former speech writer for George W. Bush, David Frum, recalled how then-Vice President Gerald Ford's "intact reputation" in the wake of Richard Nixon's resignation after Watergate "enabled Congress and the country to turn the page definitively in August 1974." According to Frum, the current Vice President of the United States isn't living up to that standard. In fact, Trump is determined to "implicate as many members of his administration as possible in his scandal," with Mike Pence "heading the list."
Frum writes that the current scandal enveloping the White House is "worse than Watergate" because "Watergate did not betray the national-security interests of the United States," and as recent reporting has revealed, Trump has "repeatedly involved" Pence in his efforts to pressure Ukraine to investigate his political opponents at the expense of U.S. foreign policy. Frum says that if Trump is ever removed from office, "there would be no Ford to put in his place, only a vice president who participated in Trump’s dirty schemes."
"The country needed Pence to keep himself clean, as Ford did, and instead—whether out of raw ambition or some weak personal impulse to subservience—Pence plunged into the deepest ooze of the mud," Frum writes. "Maybe he struggled to keep his distance, maybe he obeyed only reluctantly, or maybe he eagerly volunteered to ingratiate himself with his crooked boss. That part of the story will all come out."
Frum concludes that Pence "betrayed his most important duty as vice president," which was to be prepared to take over the highest office in the land at a moment's notice, but he’s "as much a part of the problem" as Trump is.
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