- Avideo of Vice President Mike Pence travelling by motorcade on the historically car-free Mackinac Island in Michigan has been causing outrage on social media.
- Mackinac has been car-free since 1901, and Pence is reportedly the first government official to have travelled by car on the island.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
A video of Vice President Mike Pence travelling by an eight-car motorcade on the historically car-free Mackinac Island in Michigan has been causing outrage on social media.
The motorcade was delivered to the island via ferry ahead of the Mackinac Republican Leadership Conference event, which took place on the island that has largely been preserved as a state park.
“It was our honour to transport [Pence’s] emergency vehicles to Mackinac Island this weekend,” Shepler’s Ferry, the ferry provider that transported the motorcade, tweeted.
“Regardless of your political views, we hope you’ll understand the logistical intricacies involved in securing our leaders while visiting,” the tweet continued. “We were happy to assist.”
The island enacted vehicle bans in 1901 that is still in effect today because the presence of cars on the island were “noisy and belched stinky fumes” and scared the horses, according to the Star Tribune. Exceptions of the ban include construction, police, and emergency vehicles.
Pence is the first government official to disrupt Mackinac Island’s carless tradition, according to The New York Times. Former President Gerald R. Ford visited the island in 1975, but rode a horse-drawn carriage around the island instead.
Take a look at the island and the motorcade that has “fouled (the) paradise“:
Vice President Mike Pence travelled by motorcade on Mackinac Island on Saturday in the middle of Lake Huron in Michigan to the Mackinac Republican Leadership Conference.
The island has been historically car-free since 1901.
The island enacted the vehicle ban because the presence of cars on the island were “noisy, and belched stinky fumes” and scared the horses, according to the Star Tribune.
Pence is the first government official to violate Mackinac Island’s carless tradition, according to The New York Times.
Vice President Mike Pence leaves the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island Saturday in an eight-vehicle motorcade — the island’s first ever. pic.twitter.com/p0IgewX09K
— Paul Egan (@paulegan4) September 21, 2019
Multiple videos of Pence’s arrival in his motorcade was captured by local news outlets and posted on social media, where they quickly went viral.
For Pence, eight cars were transported to the island via Shepler’s Ferry.
Shepler’s Ferry is the official ferry provider of the biennial Mackinac Republican Leadership Conference, according to the company’s website.
“It was our honour to transport [Pence’s] emergency vehicles to Mackinac Island this weekend,” Shepler’s Ferry tweeted following the transport.
“Banned for a century people, and here comes the Trump Administration trampling all over it, like they do the U.S. Constitution,” Democratic US Rep. Rashida Talib, who is from Detroit, tweeted in criticism of Pence.
The main form of transportation on the island is by foot, bike, or horse, according to The New York Times.
Over 80% of the island is preserved as a state park, according to Mackinac.com.
Almost one million people visit the Island annually and is known as one of the “most precious natural resources in Michigan.”
There are some exceptions to the island’s vehicle ban.
Construction, police, and emergency vehicles are allowed.
President Gerald R. Ford visited the island in 1975 and rode in a horse-drawn “motorcade” around the island, according to the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library and Museum.
“Not even the Secret Service could get the people of Mackinac Island to back down on their ban on motorised vehicles,” Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library ‘s now-former Photo Archivist Ken Hafeli wrote about Ford’s visit to Mackinac Island.
Shepler’s pointed out in a follow-up tweet that it ferries other vehicles to the island, including media vehicles for events.
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