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As Marc Short invokes Jan. 6 ‘massacre,’ Pence’s tightrope gets trickier

Marc Short and Greg Jacob have emerged as key witnesses in the Jan. 6 investigations. But for now, Mike Pence remains content to let them do the work of helping make the case for a post-Trump Republican Party. Pence used his speech to the Young America’s Foundation to offer only the gentlest of contrasts with Trump. He said he preferred to focus on the future rather than the past — read: the 2020 election, which Trump remains fixated on baselessly questioning. But Pence spent much of his speech repeatedly invoking the phrase ‘Trump-Pence” — the “Trump-pence tax cuts,” etc. He even mentioned Trump alongside Ronald Reagan as defining figures in the conservative movement, saying the agenda he was laying out

A long-burning question has been how Pence could just let that go. He seems happy to pursue a bifurcated approach, in which his aides do the speaking for him. That’s probably the right strategy politically, potentially keeping Pence in the good graces of enough Trump supporters to allow him to remain relevant. But if nothing comes of it, Pence has plausible deniability that he truly pressed the case against Trump.