Michael D’Antonio and Peter Eisner: Who Is Mike Pence?

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Who is Mike Pence?

It seems strange, but more than two years after he entered our national stage, how much do you feel you know about the Vice President? He’s a man of faith – we know that… but what exactly does it mean?

He has acted as something of an economic libertarian – he’s a favorite of the Koch Brothers. But again, what does that mean – and how does it connect with his religious beliefs?

And then there’s his treatment of Donald Trump – George Will notably called Pence a “sycophantic poodle.” And we all remember the Cabinet roundtable in 2017 where Pence, as the Washington Post noted, offered “one expression of gratitude or admiration every 12 seconds” over three minutes of “impromptu praise.”

How do these strands – faith, economics, and his exceptional handling of Donald Trump – come together? Who, in fact, is Mike Pence?

That’s what Michael D’Antonio and Peter Eisner cover in their new biography “The Shadow President: The Truth About Mike Pence.” It’s an extraordinary and revealing story, tracing Pence from his youth in Columbus, IN through his religious awakening and political climb. It’s also an important story – Pence, of course, is a heartbeat away.

About my guests: Michael D'Antonio is an author, journalist, and CNN commentator. He shared the 1984 Pulitzer Prize for Local Reporting with a team of Newsday reporters and has written over a dozen books, including the 2015 biography The Truth About Trump.

Peter Eisner has won national and international awards as a foreign correspondent, editor and reporter at The Washington Post, Newsday, and the Associated Press. He also was nominated for an Emmy in 2010 as a producer at PBS World Focus.

As you’d expect from practiced storytellers, it was a terrific conversation.

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