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Indiana Gov. Mike Pence said his vice-presidential role model would be Dick Cheney. “I frankly hold Dick Cheney in very high regard in his role as vice president,” Pence said when asked in an interview with ABC that aired before the election on who his vice-presidential role model would be. Donald Trump’s running mate and now vice president -elect asserted that he would be “a very active vice president” like Cheney, who served under President George W. Bush.

And when one reflects on just the kind of relationship and the level of power Dick Cheney had as vice president, one can’t forget that before Cheney, discussion about the vice presidency focused on how to make the office stronger, more effective. Not any more. “Vice President Cheney has been the most powerful vice president that we’ve ever had,” said Joel Goldstein, author of The Modern American Vice Presidency.

When you couple these two pieces of information with the fact that John Kasich, who was offered the job, was told he would basically be the president, it all becomes crystal clear why Pence sold his conservative soul: he thinks he is going to be the next president.