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Vice President Mike Pence’s daughter, Charlotte Pence has purchased a copy of the gay-themed children’s book that mocks her father’s homophobia, reports The Hill.
John Oliver released his book, Last Week Tonight With John Oliver Presents A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo, in response to the vice president’s daughter authoring a children’s book revolving around the adventures of her family’s pet rabbit, called Marlon Bundo’s A Day in the Life of the Vice President.
In Oliver’s book, Marlon Bundo is a gay rabbit that falls in love and wants to marry another male rabbit, but a stinkbug — modeled after Pence — tries to prevent them from getting married. Oliver released the parody book as a way to highlight the Vice President’s opposition to same-sex marriage and LGBTQ rights.
Pence has particularly been criticized for suggesting during his 2000 campaign for the U.S. House of Representatives that taxpayer dollars should be used to help people “change their sexual behavior” — which critics contend is a dog-whistle for supporting conversion therapy.
With those criticisms of the vice president in mind, Oliver has said proceeds from the sale of his book will go to The Trevor Project, a suicide prevention organization for LGBTQ youth, and AIDS United.
But despite Oliver’s attempt to lampoon her father’s political beliefs, Charlotte Pence is being magnanimous.
“I have bought his book,” the vice president’s daughter told The Hill. “He’s giving proceeds of the book to charity, and we’re also giving proceeds of our book to charity, so I really think that we can all get behind it.”
Proceeds from Pence’s book — which was illustrated by Second Lady Karen Pence — will go to Tracy’s Kids, which provides young cancer patients with art therapy, and A21, a nonprofit fighting human trafficking.
“It doesn’t have to be divisive,” Pence added. “I think that everybody can come together over Marlon.”
Pence, who lives in Los Angeles, says she doesn’t “pay a ton of attention to the negativity” emanating from Washington, D.C., including partisan shots lobbed at her father.
“I think you just have to have the mindset that my parents have really taught me to have, which is while people may be critical of my dad, we live in a country where we have freedoms to speak out against our elected leaders,” she says.
“So whenever people protest, my dad always has this line, he says, ‘That’s what freedom looks like.’ And it’s really true,” she adds. “At the end of the day, he’s still my dad, and my opinion of him is going to be good because I know him and I know his heart.”
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