Former VP Mike Pence made an appearance on CNN’s State of the Union this Sunday and was asked about the 13,000 U.S. auto workers that went on strike this weekend, and unlike President Biden who said the Big 3 auto makers should be sharing their profits with their workers, Pence repeatedly refused to say what he thought of the pay inequity, and instead said the matter should be left to the shareholders. We’ve all seen how well that’s worked out for them Mike.
Here’s Pence going on the attack against Biden and trying to blame the strike on “Bidenomics,” the Inflation Reduction Act and electric vehicles rather than admit there’s a problem with CEO pay in America. Heaven forbid he pisses off any of his corporate campaign donors.
TAPPER: You blamed the strike on President Biden’s policies. Most Americans, 75 percent according to Gallop, support to strikers. As a general principle do you think it’s fair that the CEO of General Motors makes 362 times what a typical GM employee makes?
PENCE: Well, let me say that what I don’t think is fair is that Joe Biden has put forward an economic agenda from the very outset that launched the worst inflation in 40 years. I mean literally the cost of living has gone up almost 17 percent since we left office. Their war on energy has caused gasoline prices to go through the roof, and I have no doubt in my mind that all those hard-working autoworkers are living in the same reality as every other American is living in, and that is that wages are not keeping up with inflation.
I also think that this green agenda that is using taxpayer dollars to drive our automotive economy into electric vehicles is understandably causing great anxiety among UAW members. These guys are seeing the Green New Deal that was passed under the guise of the Inflation Reduction Act, we’re seeing it driving their industry into electric vehicles, benefiting China who makes most of our batteries, and I think they are pushing that rightly, and I also think the American people stand behind them in the numbers you suggest because we are all living in a failed reality of Bidenomics today Jake.
TAPPER: But there’s also this issue with general fairness. In 1965, during this era of the great middle-class expansion in the United States, CEOs made about 20 times what their typical workers make, but as I noted to you, the CEO of GM makes 362 times what her typical employees make. I just want to make sure I get an answer from you. Is that okay? Do you think that’s fair.
PENCE: Well I think that ought to be left to the shareholders of that company. I am somebody that believes in free enterprise. I think those are decisions that can be made by shareholders and creating pressure, and I fully support how these publicly traded companies operate.
You know, I’m not interested in government mandates or government bullying when it comes to those kind of issues, and I’ve got to tell you, I don’t think it’s about the usual fault lines of the difference in salaries between white collar and blue collar. I think it’s that everyday Americans out there working hard are living in the midst of failed policies of Bidenonomics.
TAPPER: Inflation has been terrible, no question, but their wages haven’t gone up since the auto bailout in 2008, meanwhile, the CEOs, their wages have gone up 40 percent in the last five years. That’s what the union workers say as to why they are striking. I guess just the question here, do you side with the CEOs, or do you side with the union here?
PENCE: I side with American workers. I side with all American families. I side with the people of this country Jake that are living under the failed policies of the Biden administration. Families are struggling. Families are hurting. They know we need new leadership in the White House. I’ve got a vision. MikePence2024.com to tackle inflation, revive and unleash American energy. That’s what we’re talking about, and that’s where eve4ry American is focused today.
Tapper finally gave up with this line of questioning and moved onto the next topic. The answer to your question, Jake, is he’s just fine with the pay gap.