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Reader's view: Pence can stop monkeying with truth

While the perfidy and prevarications flow from the White House, Vice President Mike Pence seems to have taken a retreat from reality. His purpose seems to be to provide some type of cover for the president. But he has done so like a naif, and he shouldn't be given a free pass for acting like a dunce. He seems to swallow every lie told to him and others by the White House — hook, line, and sinker — and then goes out to repeat it to the public, only to look like a fool when the White House recants and veers in a different direction.

He did this with his protestations that Gen. Michael Flynn did not illicitly talk to the Russians about sanctions, which turned out to be false, and when he repeated that President Donald Trump fired FBI Director James Comey upon the recommendation of Deputy Assistant General Rod Rosenstein, a reason that both the president and deputy attorney general soon renounced. Then he denied that he knew that Flynn was under investigation for his foreign entanglements while the vice president-elect was heading the post-election transition, only to later acknowledge he had been so informed.

In swallowing these preposterous tales and then recycling them to the public, the vice president either is extremely gullible, naïve, perverse, or all of them. His unquestioning acceptance of whatever falsehoods are spewed by the White House makes him the antithesis of the slogan of one of the president's favorite publications, the tabloid National Enquirer, whose motif has been "inquiring minds want to know." To the contrary, the vice president acts like the three simians: see no-evil, hear no evil, and speak no evil.

As next in line for the presidency, Pence needs to get serious and stop monkeying around with the truth.

Marshall Tanick

Minneapolis

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