A guest column submitted by a loyal reader whose opinions I value (who shall remain anonymous) has been surveying the political scene in Indiana the past week and speaking to various informed sources. The consensus is that former Gov. Mitch Daniels played a behind-the-scenes roll in the well-orchestrated take-down of Gov. Mike Pence this past week. The reader's sleuthing confirms my suspicions regarding the Langley, Virginia brain trust, which for whatever reason has decided Pence has to be removed as Indiana's governor. The reader's conclusions were further bolstered when nothing but a bunch of Daniels' cronies showed up this morning when Indiana's legislative leaders announced their fix to Indiana's RFRA law and were immediately crowned as our state's saviors.
The headlines read, “Lawmakers believe they have language in place to fix Religious Freedom Restoration Act, give limited protections for LGBT.” But it won’t fix Pence. He’s as done as an Easter ham.
Last night David Letterman launched into a list of people who Pence look like, including "the guy who makes his dog sleep outside," "the guy whose wife has to tell him he's 'getting a little loud,'" "the guy who keeps a baseball bat in his trunk...."
What is interesting to many observers is that there is no media mention as to what the statute actually says, but only what national reporters imply a statute says. Who is actually behind all of this? The LGBT groups? Nope.
How about former Governor Mitchell E. Daniels, Jr.? Yea, how about Mitch?
He has a lot of connections not only with local media, but he knows national media. These connections go back to the days he worked for Lugar and Lilly and for President Reagan and President Bush '43. A big Rolodex.
Did you notice that when Pence began taking his big media hit, Daniels had nothing but positive media? The same week RFRA blows up for Pence a Fortune magazine article calls Daniels one of the world’s 50 greatest leaders.
How about the Chicago Tribune writing a glowing piece about a Purdue President, or how a Purdue President just happens to feel like giving testimony about alumni funded student loans? What about a relatively unknown media flack writing a book about Mitch almost running for President? Where is all of this coming from?
Is Mitch acting behind the scene helping to fan the flames under Pence? And, at the same time, the media is pumping him up. And this happens at the same time his loyal friend Holcomb runs for U.S. Senate. And Pence doesn’t want Holcomb.
Is Pence and his folks in Mitch’s way? Some say “yes, and on many levels.” Maybe, like Chas White, they need to be taught not to stand between their betters and something that is coveted by their betters. It may be payback time.
Even if Mitch doesn't want to be governor or a senator, his ego wants to control the next governor and senator because of procurement and favors and raw power. He learned that from his mentors Keith Buelen and Dick Lugar.
Mitch may want help to destroy Pence on behalf of that other Bush. This would help him be picked for VP or a cabinet spot if Jeb Bush won. He has the qualifications and was OMB Director for another Bush. Remember Mitch the Knife?
Have you noticed that Mitch and his political minions are being so quiet about RFRA? He doesn't want his fingerprints to appear on this issue in any way. He doesn't care about this issue one way or another because it's ideological and there's no real power or money attached to it.
The only real close friend of Mitch, who came out against RFRA is Angie's List CEO Bill Oesterle. But Bill simply wanted a way out of the long and sordid $18.5 M taxpayer subsidy after he was hit with the second fraud lawsuit in Philadelphia recently.
Purdue is a perfect place for Mitch where he still has some limited excuses to keep up relationships with various corporate interests tied to large donors in the aerospace industry, infrastructure, energy exploration, new energy, military tech and agriculture. Maybe he is already bored with West Lafayette.