Pence won't rule out run for presidency

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Indiana Gov. Mike Pence is leaving the door open on a potential 2016 presidential campaign.

In a conversation Friday with NBC’s Chuck Todd of “The Daily Rundown,” Todd asked if there was a chance voters could see Pence on the ballot for the 2016 presidential race – and Pence didn’t rule it out.

“You know, I haven’t spent one second thinking about anything other than the job that I was hired to do,” Pence said. But when pressed, he didn’t say he wouldn’t run.

As Todd prodded Pence, the governor touted facts about Indiana’s economy without directly addressing his questions. But Larry Sabato, director of the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia, said it’s unlikely that Pence’s name will crop up as a serious contender for 2016.

With only a year into his first term as governor, Sabato said it’s difficult to see Pence giving up the governorship so early to pursue presidential aspirations.

“That’s why I don’t take it seriously,” Sabato said. “I could see him running after two terms as governor. Absolutely. He would be finishing in 2020 and at 6-1/2, 7 years as governor.”

Sabato, who helps create the Center for Politics’ Crystal Ball presidential watch lists, said he hasn’t seen a concrete indication that Pence is ready to make a commitment.

Robert Dion, chair of the political science department at the University of Evansville, said it’s a win-win situation for Pence to dangle the presidential carrot.

“He didn’t slam the door because he doesn’t need to,” Dion said. “He can’t go wrong. This is enormously flattering. If he chooses not to run, he’s still being mentioned as a major presence in the party.”

Dion said the combination of Pence’s unique skill set – he’s comfortable with national media, is a skilled speaker and has experience on Capitol Hill – with current uncertainty within the Republican Party, makes Indiana’s governor a possible GOP champion.

But speculation of Pence’s political ambitions is nothing new, he said.

“He’s setting up very nicely to at least make a strong case for himself,” Dion said. “Whether he ultimately jumps in or not.”

This isn’t the first time in recent years a Hoosier has been under national political scrutiny.

Indiana’s former Gov. Mitch Daniels flirted with the presidential spotlight, and rumors he would run on the 2012 ballot – which were already high – soared after his keynote speech at the Conservative Political Action Committee in Washington three years ago. ?


  • Ugh...
    Pence seems sooooooo boring to me - I can hardly stay awake when he speaks. Plus, hopefully someone who support discrimination will never be president.
  • I Hate To Say This, But...
    I hate to say this, but "I told you so..." I have stated in no uncertain terms several times in various articles on IBJ that Pence wants nothing more than to run for president in 2016, or, if necessary, be a running mate. That is one of the primary reasons he is so adamant about lowering taxes, perfectly and mindlessly ignoring the ultimate consequences, since he won't be here to see the havoc this will generate on towns and cities throughout our State. Perhaps the only good thing to come from his egomaniacal and ludicrous ambitions will be that HJR-3 will not be heard from again, other than minor attempts next year from our State Legislature, because Pence is at least smart enough to know that he absolutely cannot afford to have that on the ballot for a Presidential election year. In addition, let's review his record at suckling at the teat of society. In his years in Congress, he put forth exactly NO bills that ever went anywhere, yet he is so proud of his accomplishments. What accomplishments? Allowing the taxpayers to pay for your life? Other than sing "Shut 'er down," what, exactly has he ever done?
  • Yes... Please run
    The Democrats reading this (or watching the interview) have to be thinking YES! Please do run against Hillary(pretty much like we're thinking about every name that has been thrown out as a GOP candidate). Pence spouted SO much unsubstantiated hyperbole in those few minutes he must have broken some kind of record. I'm surprised we didn't see his nose grow. WHERE is the information that people in high deductible health plans are healthier than those in other plans without adjusting for the fact that ordinarily only healthy people choose those plans? (The "consumer driven" moniker is a marketing tool and a complete joke.) Also, when is a local journalist going to point out that the majority of state employees "chose" high deductible plans because Mitch Daniels (with help from his friends at Anthem) quadrupled the premiums of the only alternative (an Anthem PPO) within the first few years they were offered. That's not exactly a "choice." So many lies, so little time!
  • Reality
    Have the Republicans not yet learned that a far-right presidential candidate has no chance?
  • Who is not a potential candidate?
    Honestly does the media have nothing better to do that toss every name under the sun for Presidential candicacy? The guy has been in office barely a year, it is way too soon to see any real impact of his position as of yet.
  • You owe me a Diet Coke.
    Because this article made me spit mine up all over my desk. Did get a good laugh out of it though. Honest to goodness!
  • Indyman Is In Right Field (with Pence)
    To Indyman - You epitomize the closed-minded views of many on the right. Moreover, you might learn something by reading and thinking about all the comments on Pence. He has about as much chance of ending up in the white house as Glenn Beck.
  • Pence must be getting it right if he has this many folks this worked up. Keep on doing what you are doing Governor, and towards the end of your second term, you can make the move to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. The best part of all this is the democrats best choice is Hillary. Wow, talk about not being very deep in the inteligence or honesty categories.
    • Pence Needs A Sanity Check
      Every comment so far has been negative toward Pence. Well, I will join the crowd. Pence is affable but seems shallow when it comes to substance and leadership. With his record and positions, Pence might attract some far right-wing votes but would fail miserably in the general election. I believe he is being driven by his ego rather than his desire to serve ALL the people. I guess old "shut 'er down" Mike keeps deluding himself that he is Presidential material.
    • 3 Bosses
      “You know, I haven’t spent one second thinking about anything other than the job that I was hired to do." You mean hired by the national GOP talking points memo, right wing special interests, and partisan political poopyheads? (Not sure if that last one is a legal PAC or not.)
    • No way...
      The thought of him as US President makes me want to vomit.
    • Do Nothing
      Great, so he can go from being a do-nothing governor to a do-nothing president. At least we can get him out of Indiana.
    • A Complete Joke
      “You know, I haven’t spent one second thinking about anything other than the job that I was hired to do,” Pence said. He's done NOTHING. Oh wait, he hitched his trailer to the gay marriage amendment. Other than that, nada. Zip. Just like when he was in Congress. Nuh-thing. This guy is nothing but a welfare queen, hoping to live off of taxpayers his whole life. Here's an idea, Pence: Get a job in the private sector and see where doing absolutely nothing gets you.
    • Good and Aweful
      It's good. I'd love him to leave the Governor's office. He's an embarrassment to me. It's awful. He can never win the White House so we'll be stuck with another Democrat. When will the Republican Party learn that these right wing nuts are not the way into office? What the country needs now is a groovy Republican.
    • Intelligence
      intelligence is exactly why your reading these comments. 'shut in down' Pence is not a leader in Indiana or the country.
    • Pence
      Not a lot of intelligence in the comments so far. Pence is a good, smart, affable guy. No wonder leftists hate him! His record as Governor isn't strong enough yet. Mitch accomplished a lot in a short period of time. Pence needs more time to establish executive credentials.
    • A Bright Side??
      Well, the only bright side of this is then he couldn't do any more damage to Indiana...but of course he is such an idiot he couldn't win anyway. But then, George Bush.....
    • I am doing it too.
      I read Eva's post and she says she is doing whatever she can to stop Pence. Me, too. If ever I can make a comment against him(on posts to the NYTimes, Washington Post, etc., I do it. Hopefully, the whole country will learn about Pence and what he is-or, isn't (a good choice for president).
    • Get in line
      He was elected with less than a majority of the votes in Indiana. Hope springs eternal.
    • you got to be kidding!
      This a JOKE right? No way he can win. He is not even a good Governor. With all the clowns in the Republican party the don't need another one.
    • The Republican Party is doomed
      God help us all. Pence has no business even thinking about being President over the whole country. What a disaster that would be. Even worse than Palin, McCain, Christie, or Bachman. What a cosmic joke.....
    • God help us all!!
      I will do everything I can to keep him from doing it. Every chance I can get to post comments on the net (anywhere and anytime)about what a poor choice that would be (and how we do not need another Bush era, as he is a Bush man)I will do so. I have already started doing this-anything anti Pence.
    • Best Joke I have Heard
      This totally has to be a joke, maybe copied and pasted from "The Onion." He wouldn't even be able to get re-elected to a representative position now.
    • L M A O
      O my God, is this fool serious. In any other state, like the state of "Sanity" he could not get elected dogcatcher
    • Ha!HAHA!HA!
      This poor man is really disillusion. Even most people in THIS state recognize that this guy is off center and hovers on the very far right of the medial dial. Besides the fact, that he is totally out of step with the rest of the country, Pence is a joke!
    • Who?
      It makes me sad, that R's are so shallow in candidates for the Pod office that our gov who is a mental midget and no even a good leader for our state could be considered for the highest office. Pence is just another radio personality who has no idea about the people and our state. How sad!

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