Republican vice presidential candidate Mike Pence had the unenviable task of taking the debate stage tonight. It wasn’t his first debate—though certainly his grandest debate stage. What made his job difficult tonight was to face off against Sen. Tim Kaine after the Trump-Pence ticket had perhaps the worst week of the campaign season. The disastrous week had nothing to do with Mike Pence, his behaviors, his words, his history, his performance. It had everything to do with his running mate. Alas, Pence was in the spotlight tonight, and did little to change the Trump-dominated conversation.