Pence returns to New York, courts GOP donors

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Gov. Mike Pence headed to New York City on Monday for what he said was a two-day state economic development trip, but his itinerary, which may bring him face-to-face with prominent Republican donors, is fueling more speculation that he is considering running for president in two years.

Pence was scheduled to attend a meeting of conservative journalists, leaders and potential donors on Monday night that was organized by the Franklin Center for Public Integrity. Tuesday morning he was slated to speak with Fox News, the Wall Street Journal editorial board and other outlets.

Pence's spokeswoman, Kara Brooks, said his primary purpose is to attend an annual reception hosted by the Indiana Economic Development Corp. at Yankee Stadium to lure businesses to the state. She said he is not scheduled to meet any donors, but may see some at "The New York Meeting".

Brooks noted that Pence attended the same IEDC business reception in New York last year.

"This is the second year that Gov. Pence has traveled to New York to meet with business executives who are interested in locating or expanding their businesses in Indiana," Brooks said.

Indiana Democrats pounced on Pence for going on the trip, calling it evidence that he is more interested in running for the White House than running Indiana, and they launched a blog to keep track of the governor's out-of-state travel. Democratic Party Chairman John Zody said Pence should focus on more pressing problems in Indiana.

The trip comes as some key pieces are falling into place for Pence, should he enter the 2016 presidential race. Pence's longtime confidant, Bill Smith, recently left work as Pence's chief of staff to start a political consulting firm, which will keep Pence as a client. Pence has said he is listening to anyone who asks him to run for the White House, but is focused on his current job as governor.

Pence built a solid reputation among conservatives nationally while serving in the U.S. House of Representatives. He was courted by many tea partyers and social conservatives to run for president in 2012, but he ran for governor instead.

He relied in part on New York money when he won the governor's office in 2012. Pence visited with real estate tycoon and reality TV star Donald Trump in 2011 and collected more than $300,000 from New York donors.


  • The Un-Transparent Politician
    Pence's political moves are so un-transparent. It is laughable. His accomplishments are very limited but his Teaparty credentials are solid. I hope he runs and we can watch his shallow record dissolve into nothingness. He is not qualified to be President. Good comments everyone!
  • You all act surprised...
    I called it two years ago when he announced his intentions to run for Governor. Gov. Pence has always wanted to run for President and knew that he had no chance being just a Congressman from Indiana. And all of the legislative "achievements" were nothing more than attempts (token at that) to boost his conservative bonafides. I hope he runs for the nomination and doesn't seek re-election. We need someone who is serious about governing Indiana, not a career politician seeking ever higher office.
  • Aye Carumba
    And all the posters below me are Republican. Ouch!
  • Great
    This is what our governor will be doing for the next 2 years. He really believes he can become president after doing nothing thus far in his career. I am sure he will "pull a Murdock" at some point and it will be over and Indiana will be embarrassed - again.
  • Well Deserved
    Blind straight ticket voters who voted for this useless guy got what they deserve. Thanks for ruining it for the rest of us.
  • What a joke
    Apparently Indiana affairs mean nothing to the guy. Maybe he should spend some time knocking down corruption in his own administration.

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  1. These liberals are out of control. They want to drive our economy into the ground and double and triple our electric bills. Sierra Club, stay out of Indy!

  2. These activist liberal judges have gotten out of control. Thankfully we have a sensible supreme court that overturns their absurd rulings!

  3. Maybe they shouldn't be throwing money at the IRL or whatever they call it now. Probably should save that money for actual operations.

  4. For you central Indiana folks that don't know what a good pizza is, Aurelio's will take care of that. There are some good pizza places in central Indiana but nothing like this!!!

  5. I am troubled with this whole string of comments as I am not sure anyone pointed out that many of the "high paying" positions have been eliminated identified by asterisks as of fiscal year 2012. That indicates to me that the hospitals are making responsible yet difficult decisions and eliminating heavy paying positions. To make this more problematic, we have created a society of "entitlement" where individuals believe they should receive free services at no cost to them. I have yet to get a house repair done at no cost nor have I taken my car that is out of warranty for repair for free repair expecting the government to pay for it even though it is the second largest investment one makes in their life besides purchasing a home. Yet, we continue to hear verbal and aggressive abuse from the consumer who expects free services and have to reward them as a result of HCAHPS surveys which we have no influence over as it is 3rd party required by CMS. Peel the onion and get to the root of the problem...you will find that society has created the problem and our current political landscape and not the people who were fortunate to lead healthcare in the right direction before becoming distorted. As a side note, I had a friend sit in an ED in Canada for nearly two days prior to being evaluated and then finally...3 months later got a CT of the head. You pay for what you get...