When he served in the House of Representatives, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence (R) was one of Congress’ staunchest backers of the Iraq War. In fact, he co-sponsored the October 2002 resolution that gave the Bush administration authorization to invade the country.
Even after things went sour, Donald Trump’s new running mate stood by his support for the invasion. In November 2005, Pence said on the House floor that “the war in Iraq was just, is just, and the freedom of the teeming millions who established a constitutional republic one week ago supports that conclusion.”
On the other side of the spectrum, one of Donald Trump’s signature talking points during the GOP primary was that unlike most all other Republicans, he opposed the Iraq War from the beginning. Trump isn’t being truthful when he says that — he actually told Howard Stern he was in favor of invading Iraq the year before U.S. troops went in — but in February, Trump went as far as to say Bush administration officials lied in order to rally public support for the invasion.
“They lied,” Trump said during a February debate. “They said there were weapons of mass destruction and there were none. And they knew there were none.”
Like Pence, then-Sen. Hillary Clinton also voted for the Iraq War resolution. Trump hasn’t let anyone forget that, of course. He’s repeatedly slammed Clinton for her vote, saying in May that it reflects her “horribly bad judgment.” But while Clinton has at least acknowledged that voting in favor of the war was a “mistake,” Pence never wavered in his belief that invading Iraq was the right thing to do.
Did search of Congressional record& discovered Pence= Bush's chief Iraq propagandist.
Floor speeches he delivered: pic.twitter.com/1HVvtCKBJj
— igorvolsky (@igorvolsky) July 15, 2016
Trump’s praise for former Iraq dictator Saddam Hussein only compounds the awkwardness. Earlier this month, Trump came under heavy criticism when he said that the United States should have left Hussein in power because he “killed terrorists” without due process.
“He did that so good,” Trump continued. “They didn’t read them the rights.”
Pence, on the other hand, consistently decried Hussein as a supporter of terrorism and threat to world stability.
Trump and Pence’s disagreement on the presumptive Republican presidential nominee’s signature foreign policy stance — not to mention their disagreements on trade and a Muslim ban — might’ve been one reason the presumptive Republican presidential nominee reportedly stayed up until the wee hours second guessing his partnership with Pence the night before it was officially announced on Friday.