Just in time for the Republican Convention, Donald Trump has picked a vice president, according to Roll Call. So who’s the lucky guy (because obviously it’s going to be a guy)? Indiana Governor Mike Pence.
The American politician and attorney is the 50th Governor of Indiana, taking office in 2013. He was raised Catholic and grew up with five siblings in Columbus, Indiana. He is also a self-proclaimed Christian, conservative and Republican, “in that order.” According to Indy Star, Pence is staunchly anti-abortion rights and a born-again evangelical Christian. While in Congress, he led the federal government to the brink of shutting down in 2011 in an effort to defund Planned Parenthood. Ultimately, it failed.
“Sadly abortion on demand is legal in America. This is about who pays for it,” Pence said. “Nobody is saying that Planned Parenthood can’t be the leading advocate of abortion on demand in America but why do I have to pay for it?”
He continued, “I long for the day that Roe v. Wade is sent to the ash heap of history, when we move past the broken hearts and the broken lives of the past 38 years.”
Pence also signed a law imposing new limitations on abortion in 2015. In protest, an anonymous woman started Periods for Pence, where women sent messages about their periods, cramps, birth control, tampon discomfort, and menopause to his office.
The law banned abortions motivated by fetal abnormalities like Down syndrome along with other characteristics. It severely tightened abortion restrictions and required abortion providers to bury or cremate fetal tissue, but Pence described the law as “a comprehensive pro-life measure that affirms the value of all human life.”
According to the Daily Beast, the bill was so extreme and “hastily-passed” that severely GOP lawmakers from Indiana were opposed to the bill. “I sign this legislation with a prayer that God would continue to bless these precious children, mothers and families,” he stated.
He is also greatly influenced by Russell Kirk, author of The Conservative Mind. “The conservative is animated by the principle of driving toward the ideal of solutions that are grounded in economic freedom and individual liberty, but also understanding that compromise is part of the conservative approach to governance,” Pence told IndyStar in a 2015 interview, referring to Kirk’s philosophy. “I don’t believe in compromising principles, but I do believe in finding a way forward on the basis of authentic common ground.”
However, it wasn’t until college, when he met his future wife Karen at an evangelical church, that he became a born-again Christian. His political views simultaneously started to shift.
“I started to identify with that kind of common-sense conservatism of Ronald Reagan,” Pence told the IndyStar, “and before I knew it, I decided I was a Republican and moved up here in Indianapolis in 1983 to go to law school.”
In 2015 Pence showed his uber-conservative ways when he signed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which prohibited the government intrusion on a person’s religious liberty “unless it could prove a compelling interest in imposing that burden and do so in the least restrictive way.” The bill could easily be used to discriminate against the LGBT community.
So… considering Donald Trump’s current state, picking Mike Pence is an interesting choice. Will this ruin him, or better his chances? Sound off in the comments below.
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