News From Terre Haute, Indiana

July 28, 2012

RONN MOTT: A salute to Mike Pence for his refreshing campaign ads

Ronn Mott
Special to the Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — I have never met Mike Pence, but I am certainly aware of him because he’s running for governor of the State of Indiana. My political ideology, which puts me slightly left of the center, means I am many paces off of Mr. Pence’s right-wing political stances. But Mike Pence has done something that deserves a salute. He has run ads of good taste, common sense, with a dash of political savvy we haven’t seen for awhile.  

Mr. Pence’s ads have told the story of how he and his wife met and got married, how he was raised by his family, and in one ad he praises the Indiana National Guard, one of the largest contingents in the country.

If you’re going to attract Democrats and those who are undecided, this is obviously a good way to start.

The Tea Party members and the hard core right-wing need not worry. Nothing in Mike Pence’s past, be it on radio or in the halls of Congress, would lead us to think that he will be anything other than what he has been — a rock-ribbed right-winger.

None of this changes our tip of the hat to Mr. Pence and his very good television ads to begin this campaign for the governorship. As a watcher of political campaigns all of my life, I have to say this is a very good beginning.

I suppose one day I’ll have the opportunity to meet Mike Pence and say these things to him in person. This does not mean I will vote for him, because we see the world through different political prisms, but you have to give the devil his due. And I think these “soft sell” political ads are exactly what voters need.

So we tip our hat to Mike Pence for having the courage to run these nonpolitical, political advertisements. I’m sure the right wing, who likes to rip and tear, might be somewhat nonplused by this. It is, however, a refreshing beginning to a political campaign.

Ronn Mott, a longtime radio personality in Terre Haute, writes commentaries for the Tribune-Star. His pieces are published online Tuesday and Thursday on, and in the print and online editions on Saturday.