For Trump, a Gray Flannel Running Mate Is Not a Bad Choice

I have long thought Mike Pence one of the more boring people in public life, which is one reason why he is a good choice for Donald Trump’s running mate. Of course, a V-P selection has little to do with the ultimate fate of the ticket: at most, it’s like the vermouth in a martini. It just gives the ticket a slightly different flavor.

That said, I like that Trump went with dull. His campaign so far has generated plenty of excitement and controversy, so a little ballast is a good thing. I am also glad that he didn’t reach into the past by selecting Newt Gingrich, or look desperate to change his image by choosing a woman or a Latino. To me, Pence comes across as a confident choice: Trump thinks he can beat Hillary, and he doesn’t need to pander or drastically change his approach to do it. What he does need is someone who will be an asset to him when he actually gets to the White House.

And, obviously, selecting Pence sends a message to the GOP’s conservative base that Trump is one of us (more or less) despite his checkered political history. That, too, is helpful.

So I think it is good that for once, Trump avoided the flamboyant and opted for the dull. I hope his judgment is as good on other matters as the campaign rolls on.


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