Trump Names Indiana Gov. Mike Pence as Running Mate | NBC Southern California
Decision 2016

Decision 2016

Full coverage of the race for the White House

Trump Names Indiana Gov. Mike Pence as Running Mate

"I am pleased to announce that I have chosen Governor Mike Pence as my Vice Presidential running mate," Trump tweeted



    Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump tweeted Friday he has selected Indiana Gov. Mike Pence to be his running mate. Mary Ann Ahern reports. (Published Friday, July 15, 2016)

    Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump tweeted Friday he has selected Indiana Gov. Mike Pence to be his running mate.

    "I am pleased to announce that I have chosen Governor Mike Pence as my Vice Presidential running mate," he tweeted. 

    Pence, 57, responded to the announcement with a tweet of his own, writing, "Honored to join @realDonaldTrump and work to make America great again."

    It's the first time a vice presidential candidate has been announced first on the social media site, the Twitter communications team told NBC's "Meet the Press."

    News of the decision that Trump was tapping the low-key social conservative ahead of next week’s Republican National Convention was also reported Thursday by NBC News. The selection, which ended days of speculation, was confirmed to NBC News sources.

    Presumptive Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton was quick to respond to Trump's announcement Friday, saying in a series of tweets Trump is "sticking with his dangerous plan for America" by choosing Pence.

    One tweet includes a campaign video that highlights aspects of Pence's political career, including his involvement in Indiana's controverisal "religious freedom" bill last year. The video also points out Pence's staunch pro-life stance and says he is "bad for immigrants."

    Trump was expected to make an official announcement on his vice-presidential pick Friday morning, the same day as Pence's deadline to withdraw from the governor's race, but he tweeted Thursday that in light of a deadly attack in southern France, he would be postponing the announcement.

    "My prayers and condolences to the victims and families of the terrible tragedy in Nice, France," he wrote. "We are with you in every way!"

    The choice comes just days after Pence and Trump appeared at a rally together in Indiana. On Wednesday, Trump and his family were seen at Pence's Indiana home.

    In a brief news conference Wednesday, Pence said he was "honored" and "humbled" to be considered.

    "The conversations that we've had between two families are something Karen and I will cherish the rest of our lives, whatever the outcome," he said at the time.

    Pence was running for re-election, but Indiana law prevents him from seeking two offices at once. He withdrew from the race Friday.

    Indiana Republican Party Chairman Jeff Cardwell congratulated Pence in a statement, saying the governor ""has worked tirelessly to make Indiana a national leader in job growth, education, and investments in the Crossroads of America."

    "His unwavering commitment to Hoosiers both in his public life as a congressman and Governor and in his personal life as a father and husband, and faithful servant, has been his utmost priority his entire life. As my friend for more than twenty five years, I know that he will be a determined and enthusiastic voice for those who feel the system has left them behind," Cardwell said in the statement.

    Trump and his family also met with other politicians thought to be in the running to serve as his vice president, should he win the election in November. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Sen. Jeff Sessions, of Alabama were both spotted at his hotel Wednesday. Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner also met privately with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie Tuesday, NBC News reported.

    Pence established himself as the group’s frontrunner after meeting with Trump earlier this month at one of the billionaire’s golf courses in New Jersey. After the meeting, Trump tweeted that he was "very impressed" with Pence.

    Before being sworn in as Indiana’s governor in 2013, Pence served as a congressman for 12 years. His name was also floated as a possible presidential candidate in 2008 and 2012.

    Pence says he is a champion of smaller government and claims credit for the largest state tax cuts in Indiana history but he also won federal approval for Obamacare Medicaid expansion with added provisions that conservatives liked.

    During the Indiana primary, he endorsed Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, but at the same time praised Trump.

    Trump Will Honor Election Results 'If I Win'

    [NATL] Trump Will Honor Presidential Election Results 'If I Win'
    Donald Trump said that he would accept the presidential election results if they were in his favor during a rally in Ohio on Oct. 20, 2016. (Published Monday, Oct. 24, 2016)

    He faced sharp criticism last year after signing a controversial "religious freedom" bill that many believed would allow for discrimination against the LGBT community. Following widespread condemnation, Pence agreed to amend the law to clarify its intent. 

    In March, Pence backed a controversial abortion measure that banned abortions performed because of the fetus's race, gender or a disability, NBC News reports. The legislation also made the receipt, sale or transfer of fetal tissue a felony. The measure was ultimately blocked by a federal judge last month.

    Born and raised in Columbus, Indiana, he graduated from Hanover College in Hanover, Indiana, and Indiana University School of Law. He and his wife have three children. His grandfather, whom Pence is named for, was a Chicago bus driver who emigrated to Ellis Island from Ireland.