The political posturing has already begun in the 2024 presidential race here in the United States, despite the fact that we’ve not yet reached the 2022 midterm elections proper, and some of the storylines emerging thus far have been rather contentious.
Take, for instance, the continued fallout between former President Donald Trump and his VP Mike Pence, the latter of whom has been consistently hinting at the potential for his own White House run in the coming general election, despite the well-understood likelihood of his former boss announcing his own candidacy in the coming weeks.
Now, as the former dynamic duo continues living separate political lives, Pence appears to be once again preparing the nation for his segue to the main stage…and he’s taking thinly veiled shots at Trump as he goes.
Former Vice President Mike Pence spoke about the future of the conservative movement Wednesday morning, warning that it cannot be “led astray by the siren song of unprincipled populism.”
Pence said speaking to an audience at the Heritage Foundation:
“Our movement cannot forsake the foundational commitment that we have to security, to limited government, to liberty, and to life. But nor can we allow our movement to be led astray by the siren song of unprincipled populism that’s unmoored from our oldest traditions and most cherished values”.
“Some in our movement long for a simple return to traditional conservative agenda of the Reagan era,” he said. “Others say our movement should be swept along by a new and energetic sense of populism.”
The former vice president was not entirely dismissive of populism, saying, “We don’t have to choose between one at the expense of the other,” adding that the Trump administration was an example of a “marriage of an unapologetic commitment to the foundations of the conservative agenda with thoughtful, populist priorities driven by the aspirations of the American people.”
“I’m proud to report during the four years of our administration, every single day, we fought for a strong national defense, for free market and free enterprise principles, less government, less taxes, less regulation, and we stood every day for the sanctity of human life,” he explained.
Pence, unsurprisingly, offered up a wishy-washy take on the future of the party, hoping to marry a less extreme version of populism to his own centrist message, as only a moderate politician would attempt to do.