Fly on Mike Pence’s head steals the show at Vice Presidential debate


By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |

October 8, 2020 12:22:02 pm

Vice President Mike Pence listens to Democratic vice presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., during the vice presidential debate Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020, at Kingsbury Hall on the campus of the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

A rogue housefly became the unlikely star of the US Vice Presidential debate after it lodged itself on Vice President Mike Pence’s cropped white hair for several minutes during his face-off against Democratic contender Kamala Harris.

During the debate, Pence seemed unaware of the fly’s presence as he continued to diligently take notes and answer questions posed to him by the moderator. The insect that had perched itself on his head for a little over two minutes, sparked an avalanche of hilarious reactions on social media.

A split television screen showed Harris looking at Pence while the fly basked in the spotlight, but it was not immediately clear if she saw it. A short time later, it was gone, but its legend was only growing.

Soon after the fly began creating a buzz online, Former Vice President and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden jumped on the bandwagon and tweeted a photograph of himself with a fly swatter in his hand. “Pitch in $5 to help this campaign fly,” he wrote. His campaign set up a website,, to register voters. Within the hour, it was selling a “Truth over Flies” fly swatter for $10.

The word ‘flies’ quickly began trending on Twitter, and some users took it to the next level by setting up social media handles for the tiny insect. The fly has become the subject of hundreds of memes and jokes, which were shared mere minutes after it landed on Pence’s head.

Several users also pointed out that his left eye looked abnormally red, prompting some to question whether he had contracted pink eye, or worse, Covid-19 — since conjunctivitis is a rare symptom associated with the deadly infection.

While Harris and her team prepared for the sexist double standard that subjects women to more scrutiny than men for the way that they look, it was surprisingly Pence’s appearance that was the subject of discussion through the event.

Democratic vice presidential nominee Senator Kamala Harris and US Vice President Mike Pence participate in their 2020 vice presidential campaign debate held on the campus of the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, Utah, U.S., October 7, 2020. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

Pence’s staff chose not to capitalize on the uninvited guest. In a post-debate call, senior adviser Jason Miller had a different animal in mind. “We had a deer in the headlights look from Senator Harris tonight,” he said, reported news agency Reuters.

Some Democrats took the opportunity to bring up President Donald Trump’s COVID-19 infection. “The fly needs to be quarantined,” Democratic Representative Ilhan Omar wrote. Republican Senator Rand Paul had a different spin: “The deep state planted a bug on @VP. This illegal spying is really out of control.” Stephen Colbert, host of “The Late Show” on CBS, suggested that by remaining perched in Pence’s hair for two minutes or so, the fly had a greater attention span than Trump himself.

Here are some of the top reactions to the fly on Pence’s head

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