Why Was Donald Trump Caressing Mike Pence’s Thigh?

We wish we could unsee that.

The president and first lady were joined by Vice President Mike Pence and his wife, Karen, at a memorial for evangelist Billy Graham, who is lying in honor at the U.S. Capitol.
It was a somber affair, but photographer Shawn Thew captured a snapshot of Trump reaching over Melania to caress Mike Pence’s leg.

Shawn Thew-Pool/Getty Images

What’s that all about?

Was it a show of emotional support to the evangelical Pence? A way to permit his VP, who’s famously not allowed alone in a room with a woman who’s not Karen, to sit next to Slavic bombshell Melania?

It couldn’t have been a hint of a secret gay Oval Office tryst, could it? I mean, Pence is as homophobic as they come: As governor of Indiana he signed the state’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act in law, allowing businesses and individuals to discriminate against LGBT people if it was on religious grounds.

He also opposed marriage equality and suggested money set aside for HIV/AIDS research should go toward conversion therapy. Trump even once “joked” his second in command wanted to hang all gay people.

Gee, now that you think about it, he does seem to be overcompensating for something. Lord, the very thought of it is enough to turn you straight.

Dan Avery is a writer-editor who focuses on culture, breaking news and LGBT rights. His work has appeared in Newsweek, The New York Times, Time Out New York, The Advocate and elsewhere.