After a smattering of reports Thursday, Donald Trump confirmed it himself Friday: Indiana Gov. Mike Pence will be the presumptive GOP vice presidential candidate.
I am pleased to announce that I have chosen Governor Mike Pence as my Vice Presidential running mate. News conference tomorrow at 11:00 A.M.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 15, 2016
Trump had originally scheduled an announcement at 11 a.m. Friday morning to deliver the news officially. He postponed it following the attacks in Nice, France.
The postponement put Pence in something of a bind, since the governor had a noon Friday deadline to submit his name to appear on the ballot for reelection in Indiana. Pence had announced in June 2015 that he was planning to run for reelection. Trump’s announcement Friday morning came a little over an hour before Pence’s deadline. Shortly afterward, Pence officially withdrew from the running in Indiana.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie had reportedly been on the shortlist for the Veep slot.
Thursday night, during a phone interview with Fox’s Greta van Susteren, Trump averred that he had not yet made a “final, final decision” about his running mate and claimed that there were people in the running that the media didn’t even know about.
Pence has served as the Republican governor of Indiana since 2013. Before that he represented the Hoosier State in Congress from 2001 to 2013.
In Dec. 2015, Pence criticized Trump for his proposed ban on all Muslims entering the nation, calling it “offensive and unconstitutional.” He originally backed Ted Cruz in the Indiana Republican primary, though his endorsement came late in the game and was not terribly enthusiastic.
Ardent Trump supporter Ann Coulter said Thursday that the news about Pence, if true, was “Trump’s first mistake.” She wrote, “Trump doesn’t need a vice president from the party he’s just buried.”
According to Trump’s Twitter account, the official news conference has been rescheduled for Saturday morning at 11 a.m.
Sam Reisman (@thericeman) is a staff editor at Mediaite.
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