Letters to the Editor: Why a President Mike Pence would have mishandled the pandemic too

Mike Pence
Then-Indiana Gov. Mike Pence speaks during a news conference in 2015.
(Michael Conroy / Associated Press)

To the editor: Almost anyone would be better as president than Donald Trump, whose inept management has led to our current public health crisis and economic recession. But as a nurse practitioner, I question columnist Jonah Goldberg’s belief that Vice President Mike Pence would have handled the pandemic better if Trump had been removed from office.

As governor of Indiana, Pence’s handling of an HIV outbreak in 2015 caused the small city of Austin to have a higher incidence of infection than any country in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Pence has falsely said that coronavirus spikes are due solely to a rise in testing. He has also denied there will be a “second wave” of COVID-19 infections. We are not even out of the first wave, and in August the number of cases will likely increase.


Who should be handling the pandemic? Public health officials in the federal government. Neither Trump nor Pence have shown any ability to handle this pandemic since they were warned about it — urgently and repeatedly — in January.

Jacqueline Ficht, South Pasadena


To the editor: During all this turmoil it would seem like anyone would be a better president than Trump. While this pandemic rages on, it is clear that the citizens of the country desire and require a calm, compassionate leader.

What Goldberg seems to forget while considering Pence for his “quiet, assured and reassuring, professionalism” is his horrendous handling of the HIV outbreak in Indiana during his time as governor. He compounded the problem with his denial and disregard, something Pence seems to be good at.

While Trump is a walking disaster, it says a lot about where we currently stand that a reasonable person would consider such an awful and ineffective elected official like Pence to be “better.” Death by fire and death by drowning are both still death.

Kyle Thomas, Hollywood