Mike Pence attended an NFL football game today in Indiana, only to immediately walk out in protest after several black football players took a knee during the national anthem. We can confirm that Pence diverted from his west coast tour just to attend the game, meaning he spent a ton in taxpayer money – and we can also confirm that he and Donald Trump orchestrated this walkout in advance.
Pence is confirmed to have been in Las Vegas last night, according to the Los Angeles Times (link). He’s also scheduled to arrive in California tonight, according to PBS News (link). This means he clocked around four thousand extra air miles just to attend a football game. Considering the cost involved in the vice president’s travels, including his security detail and other factors, it’s a certainty that Pence burnt up at least six figures worth of taxpayer money. This would have been an abuse even if he had been planning to simply enjoy the game. But now we know that he was never planning to stay at the game.
One of Mike Pence’s staffers admitted that Pence had been planning all along to bail on the game, according to NBC News (link). Donald Trump then tweeted that he had asked Pence to leave the game if anyone took a knee (link). Considering that the San Francisco 49ers were the road team in this game, and that several of their players always take a knee, it was a certainty that it would happen again today. Pence knew he’d be walking out on the game before he even got there.
In other words, Mike Pence’s walkout stunt today was one hundred percent orchestrated from the start. He wasted a bundle of taxpayer money just so he could attend an NFL game for a couple minutes on the other side of the country, and then post a divisive series of tweets about it. Moreover, Pence tweeted a substantial prepared statement almost immediately after walking out of the game, which had clearly been written in advance.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report