Alysin Camerota summed it up. "Former vice president Mike Pence has broken his silence in an op-ed about the election. and a new election law. His op-ed cries out for a reality check and John Avlon is here to oblige," she said.
"There's not a phrase in English for what former VP Mike Pence did yesterday. He emerged himself with an op-ed trying to curry favor with some of the same people who wanted to kill him at the Capitol," Avlon said.
"I mean, this is more than a fool's errand or exercise in political masochism. Listen to the first part of the first line. 'After an election marked by significant voting irregularities, I share the concerns of millions of Americans about the integrity of the 2020 election.' He's trying to dignify the Big Lie. The same one that almost got him killed. Because, of course, there were not significant voting irregularities.
"You need more evidence than the 60 court cases Team Trump lost, listen to election officials nationwide or former AG Bill Barr, Chris Wray. Pence knows a certain truth. Why is he doing it? Stockholm syndrome is when you start to identify with your captors. This is way worse. Listen to him trying to meet the mob halfway.
"'January 6th deprived the American people about a substantive conversation in Congress about election integrity.' The ex-veep wants to get in with that gang so we opposed a big election bill, HR-1. The measure, which passed the house late last night, includes automatic voter registration, independent restricting commissions, protects early voting, expand absentee voting and require backup paper ballots but also reins in conflicts of interest and stops members of Congress from sitting on corporate boards, to name just a few provisions.
"Pence is defending election integrity and the falsehoods flowed from there. Pence said the bill would ensure millions of illegal immigrants are quickly registered to vote. That's not true though it's fear mongering. It does not change U.S. law. Anyone registered would have to provide proof of citizenship. 'Voter ID would be banned from coast to coast.' That's also not true. People who show up to vote without ID have to sign a statement under penalty of perjury. Pence claimed the bill would force states to adopt universal mail-in ballots. Nope. It would just allow all citizens to ask for no-excuse absentee ballots just like Trump did.
"Now, as CNN political analyst Joe Lockhart tweeted, when Republicans say election integrity, they mean voter suppression. It's funny because it's true. There are more than 250 bills to restrict voting being pushed in 43 states right now. Just this week, a lawyer for the Arizona GOP told the Supreme Court they were pushing for changes, quote, 'because it puts us in a competitive disadvantage relative to Democrats.' Classic Washington gaffe. Accidentally telling the truth.
"Here's a larger truth. Mike Pence is never, ever going to get people who bought into Trump's Big Lie to back him for president. and that's your reality check."