Election 2020

Report: Pence Drops Re-Election Bid to Serve as Trump's Running Mate

(AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

The Indianapolis Star has confirmed that Governor Mike Pence has dropped his bid for re-election in order to serve as Donald Trump’s vice presidential running mate.

Gov. Mike Pence is dropping his re-election bid in Indiana to become Donald Trump’s running mate.

IndyStar has confirmed that Trump plans to announce Pence as his selection for vice president, ending a weeks-long vice presidential casting callduring which Trump vetted a handful of high-profile Republicans.

Trump’s national campaign spokeswoman, Hope Hicks, said “a decision has not been made.” A formal announcement is scheduled for 11 a.m. Friday in Manhattan.

The long-awaited decision upends the political landscape in Indiana and at least partially remakes the Trump campaign in Pence’s image.

In Pence, Trump has added a social conservative who GOP strategists say will reassure rank-and-file Republicans that Trump can be trusted to pursue their interests. Veteran political observers say Pence, a former U.S. House member and chairman of the House Republican Conference, will provide a disciplined counter to Trump’s improvisational campaign style. Pence also brings fundraising power and credibility on a wide range of policy issues that are important to conservatives.

Pence is set to officially become the vice presidential nominee during the Republican National Convention, which starts July 18 in Cleveland. He could become the first vice president from Indiana since Dan Quayle took office in 1989 under George H.W. Bush.

Pence’s departure for national politics sets up a scramble among Indiana Republicans to determine who will replace Pence to run against Democratic challenger John Gregg in the November gubernatorial election.

For the first time in state history, the Indiana Republican State Committee will determine the GOP candidate for governor in a process that could last into August. The 22-member panel has 30 days from the date Pence officially withdraws his candidacy to choose Pence’s replacement on the ballot.

Pence is the safe choice. And with Hillary Clinton’s campaign faltering badly, Trump didn’t give anyone an excuse to attack him for an off-the-wall selection.

Pence isn’t exactly a rabble rouser as a speaker, but he really doesn’t need to be. All he needs to do to be effective is keep repeating “email, email, email” and he’ll be fine.

Trump will make a joint appearance with Pence in New York City tomorrow morning.