[General] Pence serves as a daily reminder ...

rodgers white

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What does "Pence serves as a daily reminder that the Constitution offers an alternative to Trump." mean?
I am not sure if it means "The constitution doesn’t seem to be in Trump’s mind until Pence reminds him of that."

Thanks in advance.
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Pence, who has dutifully stood by the President, mustering a devotional gaze rarely seen since the days of Nancy Reagan, serves as a daily reminder that the Constitution offers an alternative to Trump. The worse the President looks, the more desirable his understudy seems. The more Trump is mired in scandal, the more likely Pence’s elevation to the Oval Office becomes, unless he ends up legally entangled as well.

-New Yorker

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Raymott

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The article begins with mentioning a few people who are realizing that Pence may be a better option - Anne Coulter, Gail Collins, and Dana Milbank. Since this immediately precedes the paragraph you quote, I would say that the "daily reminder" of the constitution is a reminder to the American people, or the journalists and commentators, rather than to Trump.
 

rodgers white

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The article begins with mentioning a few people who are realizing that Pence may be a better option - Anne Coulter, Gail Collins, and Dana Milbank. Since this immediately precedes the paragraph you quote, I would say that the "daily reminder" of the constitution is a reminder to the American people, or the journalists and commentators, rather than to Trump.

I really don't understand how you can see " a daily reminder that the Constitution offers an alternative to Trump" as " a daily reminder of the Constitution to the American people, or the journalists and commentators, rather than to Trump ".
What does "the Constitution offers an alternative to Trump" exactly mean here? I am sorry for my slowness in understanding what you say.
 

probus

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I think it means no more than that the Constitution sets out the circumstances in which a President can be removed from office, the method of doing so, and the order of succession, the vice-President coming first of course.

In interpreting current periodical writing about Trump, it is essential to keep in mind how polarizing Trump is. To tens of millions of Americans he can do no wrong, and remains a vital antidote to the ills of their government; while tens of millions of others consider him a criminal and find everything he does wrong. It is also, therefore, very useful to have an idea of the biases of the journal. The New Yorker is one of my favourite publications, but it has a very strong anti-Trump bias.
 
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rodgers white

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I think it means no more than that the Constitution sets out the circumstances in which a President can be removed from office, the method of doing so, and the order of succession, the vice-President coming first of course.

In interpreting current periodical writing about Trump, it is vital to keep in mind how polarizing Trump is. To tens of millions of Americans he can do no wrong, and remains a vital antidote to the ills of their government; while tens of millions of others consider him a criminal and find everything he does wrong. It is also, therefore, very useful to have an idea of the biases of the journal. The New Yorker is one of my favourite publications, but it has a very strong anti-Trump bias.
Thank you so much for your detailed explanation. I finally understand that the sentence actually means "Pence serves as a daily reminder of the Constitution to tens of millions of American people that Pence may be a better option if the president is removed from office. By the way, I really appreciate it when you tell me something about its political stand of the weekly magazine The New Yorker.
 

Raymott

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I really don't understand how you can see " a daily reminder that the Constitution offers an alternative to Trump" as " a daily reminder of the Constitution to the American people, or the journalists and commentators, rather than to Trump ".
"The constitution offers an alternative to Trump" is ambiguous. It can mean i) The constitution gives Trump an alternative, ii) The Constitution gives the American people an alternative to Trump.
The usage is ii. "An alternative to Trump" here means "an alternative person rather than Trump.

Compare:
"The chef offered an alternative to the vegetable soup - chicken soup."
Chicken soup is an alternative to vegetable soup. The alternative of chicken soup was not offered to the vegetable soup, but to the diner.
 
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Tarheel

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Pence does not serve as a reminder of the Constitution. He serves as a reminder that there is an alternative to President Trump. (But only if the President is impeached and subsequently removed from office.)
 

rodgers white

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Pence does not serve as a reminder of the Constitution. He serves as a reminder that there is an alternative to President Trump. (But only if the President is impeached and subsequently removed from office.)
Thank you, Tarheel. You've made everything even clearer. As for many American people, Pence serves as a daily reminder that the Constitution offers (an alternative to Trump) to (them).
 

Tdol

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I finally understand that the sentence actually means "Pence serves as a daily reminder of the Constitution to tens of millions of American people that Pence may be a better option if the president is removed from office.

It only serves as a reminder of that to those who believe he would be better. Some people, on both sides of politics, believe he would be worse, but they are also reminded that removing the president might make things, in their view, worse.
 
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