Former Pence Staffer Condemns Trump’s “Flat Out Disregard for Human Life”

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Another former member of President Donald Trump’s administration has denounced him and endorsed his Democratic opponent. This time it’s Oliva Troye—a former adviser to Vice President Mike Pence on homeland security and counter-terrorism and member of the White House’s coronavirus task force—who told the Washington Post she made her decision because of the president’s “flat out disregard for human life.” Troye left her position in August.

Coinciding with the announcement, the group Republican Voters Against Trump released a two-minute video with Troye in which she elaborates on that charge, detailing a meeting with the president in which, she claims, he suggested that the pandemic was a “good thing” because he’d no longer have to shake hands with “disgusting people”:

“Towards the middle of February we knew it wasn’t a matter of if Covid would become a big pandemic here in the United States, it was a matter of when,” Troye says in the video. “But the president didn’t want to hear that, because his biggest concern was that we were in an election year, and how was this going to effect what he considered to be his record of his success? It was shocking to see the president saying that the virus was a hoax, saying that everything was going to be okay when we know that it’s not.”

Troye describes herself as a supporter of George W. Bush and John McCain who simply can’t take another term of Trump. Her video is an echo, in some ways, of RVAT’s first big testimonial, in which Miles Taylor, former chief of staff to Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, called his experience working in the administration “terrifying.” In fact, Troye uses that exact word.

On Thursday, Pence responded to Troye’s video calling her “one more disgruntled employee who’s left the White House to play politics during an election year.” It’s weird for an administration to repeatedly trash the people it once hired, but all things considered, it’s probably a better strategy than running on their response to the coronavirus.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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