(DCWatchdog.com) – Mike Pence has gone on the offensive against his former boss, Donald Trump, attacking him and his “populist followers and imitators” for replacing conservatism with populism.
You can watch a short video clip of Pence’s attack further down this post.
According to most public opinion surveys, Pence polls in the single digits in the 2024 GOP presidential nomination race, while Trump has a lead of dozens of percentage points.
Delivering a speech at Saint Anselm College in New Hampshire on Wednesday, Pence lamented what he sees as conservatives’ inclination to succumb to populism.
In the address, “Populism vs. Conservatism: Republicans’ Time for Choosing,” the former vice president warned that if the trend continued, “our party’s relevancy will be confined to history books.”
“It may live on in some populist fashion, but then it will truly be, in a cruel twist, Republican in name only,” he stated, as cited by National Review.
“Will we choose to go down the path of populism and decline? I believe we stand at a crossroads. I have faith that Republican voters will once again choose the good way,” the Indiana Republican declared.
Besides dwelling on how populists are destroying the Republican agenda of traditional values and limited government with “little else than personal grievances and performative outrage,” Pence slammed Trump directly.
“The Republican Party did not begin on a golden escalator in 2015,” he said in a reference to Trump’s presidential announcement at Trump Tower in New York City.
“Donald Trump, along with his populist followers and imitators — some of whom are also seeking the Republican presidential nomination — often sound like an echo of the progressive they would replace in the White House,” Pence argued.
He also criticized the former president’s stance on entitlement reform for being the same as that of President Joe Biden – as Trump recently urged GOP lawmakers not to “cut a single penny from Medicare or Social Security.”
The former vice president also attacked others bidding for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination.
He blasted entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy for his support for spiking the inheritance tax and for being “one of the former president’s populist protégés.”
Pence also criticized Florida Governor Ron DeSantis for “us[ing] the power of the state to punish corporations for taking a political stand he disagreed with.”
Here is the video clip:
“Republican voters face a choice … Will we be the party of conservatism or will we follow the siren song of populism, unmoored to conservative principles?”
— 2024 GOP candidate Mike Pence at a campaign speech in New Hampshire pic.twitter.com/SxiCNwSStM
— The Recount (@therecount) September 6, 2023