Did Donald Trump Choose Mike Pence As His VP?

Update: On Friday via one simple tweet, Donald Trump confirmed Indiana Gov. Mike Pence is his Vice Presidential running mate.

Earlier: It's finally about to happen: Reuters is reporting that Donald Trump is about to announce that Indiana Governor, Mike Pence will be his running mate. So, why would Trump choose Governor Pence? Trump's potential vice presidential nominee has sparked endless discussion of late — not only did many politicians make it clear that they did not want to run alongside the businessman, but many believed that Trump would need to choose a running mate who could help him appeal to voters who might be offended by Trump's xenophobic messages. For instance, some speculated that Trump would pick a woman as his VP because he tends to do poorly amongst women voters. However, it seems as if Trump wants to send Republicans a message with his presumptive VP pick: Trump is a Republican candidate who will support conservative GOP policies.

Governor Pence would undoubtably help Trump appeal to traditional Republican voters. Trump often contradicts himself when discussing policy on issues from abortion access, to LGBTQ rights, — and sometimes speaks against accepted Republican stances on these issues — but Governor Pence does not. According to The New York Times, the Indiana governor sticks to his conservative ideals. For example, Governor Pence is, and has always been, against abortion, and LGBTQ rights. The Governor even signed into law Indiana's Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which essentially lets businesses in Indiana discriminate against the LGBTQ community.

Throughout the presidential campaign, there has been much uncertainty as to whether or not evangelical Christians support Trump. Even though a recent PEW Poll showed that evangelicals will likely vote overwhelmingly for Trump, by choosing Governor Pence, Trump will be even more certain to receive the evangelical Christian vote. Governor Pence is a conservative Christian, which is clear from his policy: in April 2016, the Governor signed a law that makes it even more difficult for women in Indiana to receive abortions.

However, Governor Pence brings more to the table for Trump than just extremely conservative ideals — it's likely that Trump also chose the presumptive nominee because of his political experience. Trump has never served as a lawmaker before, and therefore, it's no surprise that his presumptive vice presidential pick has a long career as an elected official. According to The Hill, before he became the Governor of Indiana, Pence served six terms in Congress.

However, it's likely that Trump chose his presumptive nominee because he wants to be taken seriously by the GOP. The Republican National Convention is next week, and Trump wants to ensure that he receives his party's nomination — with Governor Pence on his ticket, it's even more of a certainty that Trump will be the official GOP presidential nominee. In fact, The Washington Post reported that Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, recently praised Governor Pence — picking the Governor will surely help Trump gain more enthusiastic support from Ryan, and other GOP leaders.

The New York Times reported that Trump plans to officially announce his vice presidential pick in Manhattan on Friday. Governor Pence, Trump's presumptive running mate, will certainly please Republican leaders, and conservative voters — groups Trump clearly believes he needs to appeal to in order to win the presidency.