Upon arrival at the United States Military Academy, VP Pence and wife Karen Pence left their motorcade and braved the freezing winds to see the statue of Douglas MacArthur, located next to MacArthur Barracks. They were accompanied by the academy's superintendent, Lieut. Gen. Robert L. Caslen Jr., and his wife Shelly. They spent a few minutes admiring the elevated statue, touching the snow-covered base.
Afterward the group walked over to the superintendent's quarters, where they were greeted by a cadet color guard and the academy band. Mr. and Mrs. Pence stood, attentive, hands over their hearts -- next to Sen. Tim Scott -- while the band played the national anthem.
Afterward, the VP and Mrs. Pence went inside the quarters and greeted African-American cadets standing at a rectangular dining table. Mr. and Mrs. Pence went around the table introducing themselves and chatting briefly with the cadets. One was Christian Nattiel, a Rhodes Scholarship recipient.
"You're in my speech!" Mr. Pence said, referring to an address he's giving later tonight.
Sen. Scott made sure to point out a cadet from South Carolina, while someone else told the former Indiana governor, "We have a Hoosier here."
"Good heavens, man," Mr. Pence said, greeting the cadet.
Pool was escorted out as the roundtable discussion with the cadets began.
We're now holding in a reception room whose jaw-dropping décor includes an actual uniform coat of Ulysses S. Grant – class of 1843. Hanging above the fireplace is a portrait of Robert E. Lee, commander of the Confederacy and a former superintendent of the academy.
Through the windows we can see the snow-covered Plain.
Your pooler is tempted to enroll.