So much media attention has been focused on how the presidential inauguration in two weeks will remove Donald Trump from office that many may have forgotten that Mike Pence will also be out of a job soon. On January 20th Pence will become just the second Vice President of the United States in the last 40 years to have only served one term. The other was Dan Quayle who served under George Bush Sr. from 1989 – 1993. Pence’s imminent departure is reason enough to compare the two and try and answer the difficult question:

Who was the most forgettable Vice President of the United State in the last 40 years, Mike Pence or Dan Quayle?

Before proceeding, I should mention that I have intentionally limited the timespan under observation. If I had gone back much further in history I would have had to include Spiro Agnew and a three way race is just way too complicated. To learn more about Vice President Agnew’s incredible accomplishments I highly recommend Steve Goodman’s Ballad of Spiro Agnew.

And now, on to the comparison!

 Dan QuayleMike Pence
Political partyRepublicanRepublican
Born inIndianaIndiana
Marital statusmarried oncemarried once
Children33
Highest level
of education
Juris Doctor
Indiana University
Juris Doctor
Indiana University
Favorite photo
shoot prop
American flagAmerican flag
Personal styleDark suit, white shirt,
boring necktie
Dark suit, white shirt,
boring necktie
Key accomplishment
as Vice President
Chairman of the National Space CouncilChairman of the National
Space Council
Key accomplishment after leaving office??time will tell
Biggest gaffemisspelled potato while visiting a schooltouched “do not touch” equipment on NASA tour
Stupidest quoteIf we don’t succeed, we
run the risk of failure.
The U.S. Space Force will refer
to its members as guardians.

Overall I would say it is a tossup. Feel free to make suggestions for additional categories I should include or critical facts I have missed.

4 thoughts on “Pence vs. Quayle

  1. Well, Pence has just been presented with a dramatic opportunity to be remembered for something important. How do you think he’s going to handle this test?

    1. I wrote this last night, set the post date for early this morning, went to bed, and woke up to the shocking news of Trump supporters storming the U.S. Congress. I think Pence will accept the valid election results – distancing himself from Trump is probably his best long term strategy. I find it depressing that 137 (current tally as I write this) Republican representatives continue to contest the election results. It is hard to believe that this is the same party that Abe Lincoln once led.

      1. It is pretty unfathomable, I agree. Also? Looks like Pence has decided to stay forgettable (no great surprise there).

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