Reports surfaced this week that Vice President Mike Pence and ex-White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus were planning to snatch the presidency right from under President Donald Trump.
The Atlantic published a profile piece of Pence Tuesday, detailing how he and Priebus were considering “going rogue” back in October 2016 after The Washington Post leaked the infamous “Access Hollywood” tape in which Trump brags about using his star power to grab women “by the p***y.”
“Within hours of The Post’s bombshell, Pence made it clear to the Republican National Committee that he was ready to take Trump’s place as the party’s nominee,” The Atlantic reported.
The article notes that GOP officials were considering running a ticket with Pence in the lead and Condoleezza Rice as the new vice presidential nominee, and that then-RNC chairman and future White House chief of staff Reince Priebus told Trump to “either drop out immediately or lose in a historic landslide.”
Although the rumor doesn’t seem too far-fetched, Pence’s press secretary, Alyssa Farah, emphatically denies that a coup was ever in the works.
Regarding The Atlantic’s tired, false claim about the VP during the campaign -- we denied this in the article and deny it again today. Didn’t happen.😴— Alyssa Farah (@VPPressSec) December 5, 2017
Priebus also told CNN that the story is “100 percent false.”
.@Reince tells me “Every tiny bit of this Pence coup anecdote is 100% false. It was never discussed - never contemplated. This writer never called or reached out for comment either.” https://t.co/PUujVghFm5— Dana Bash (@DanaBashCNN) December 5, 2017
“It was never discussed — never contemplated," he asserted.
Regardless of whether these men are just covering their tracks or really never considered this tactic, the bottom line is that it didn't happen. And, considering that Pence's track record of being an ultra-conservative, anti-LGBT, anti-women's reproductive rights politician makes him not much better than Trump, we really don't know whether to be relieved or disappointed about that.