There is a pretense of caution: The course of the race is designed to avoid flying directly over crowds.
There is not even the pretense of actual interaction with voters.
Some journalists dropped the pretense entirely, openly taking the side of the White House against their colleagues.
also pretence, early 15c., "the putting forth of a claim," from Anglo-French pretensse, Middle French pretensse (Modern French prétense), from Medieval Latin noun use of fem. of Late Latin praetensus, altered from Latin praetentus, past participle of praetendere (see pretend). Meaning "false or hypocritical profession" is from 1540s.