Donald Trump has named pro-life Indiana Governor Mike Pence as his vice-presidential running mate. The Republican presidential candidate announced the selection in an unsurprising move for him — on Twitter.
I am pleased to announce that I have chosen Governor Mike Pence as my Vice Presidential running mate. News conference tomorrow at 11:00 A.M.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 15, 2016
The Washington Examiner reports that the decision was a long-time coming.
“Trump made the decision formal just days before the convention, but began speaking with Pence and the governor’s team quite some time ago. Pence’s gubernatorial campaign said it was in constant contact with the presumptive nominee’s team in June as it looked to gear up for the general election,” it reported.
Pence, a pro-life governor hailed by pro-life groups for recently signing a bill to ban abortions targeting babies with Down syndrome, was seen as Donald Trump’s most likely running mate this past week.
Indiana Right to Life President Mike Fichter sent LifeNews the following comments about Pence, who he knows very well:
“Gov. Pence is devoted to protecting the unborn and their mothers. Gov. Pence’s pro-life stance is more than a talking point; Gov. Pence has put his pro-life position into action time and time again. Indiana is a better state for the unborn and their mothers because of the Governor’s pro-life leadership.
“Even before becoming the state’s top executive, Gov. Pence demonstrated his willingness to fight for the protection of life in a meaningful way. In Congress, Pence led the effort to defund the nation’s largest abortion business, Planned Parenthood.
“Since becoming governor, Gov. Pence has advanced the pro-life cause through legislation and his administration. Under Gov. Pence, there are four fewer abortion facilities. The state abortion rate has been steadily declining every year. The state is enforcing health regulations that protect women’s health, and abortion doctors know they don’t have a free pass.
In comments to LifeNews.com, one leading pro-life advocate says the reported decision to pick Pence is a great one for pro-life voters.
“Mr. Trump’s selection of Gov. Mike Pence is an affirmation of the pro-life commitments he’s made and will rally the pro-life grassroots,” said SBA List President Marjorie Dannenfelser. “Gov. Pence has proven to be a pro-life champion both during his time in Congress and as Governor of Indiana. It was Mike Pence who led the effort to defund Planned Parenthood in Congress, and it was Gov. Pence who signed into law a historic bill protecting unborn children from lethal discrimination in the womb. Mike Pence is a pro-life trailblazer and Mr. Trump could not have made a better choice.”
Dannenfelser said Trump has pledged to advance and sign into law the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, defund Planned Parenthood, and appoint pro-life Justices to the Supreme Court.
“With a solid pro-life voting record on abortion during his time in Congress, and through his pro-life actions as Indiana governor, Mike Pence has proven himself to be a strong leader for the right to life,” said Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life.
During his tenure in the U.S. House of Representatives (2001-2012), Pence, served as a member of the House Judiciary Committee and on the Subcommittee on the Constitution. In those positions, Pence actively participated in hearings and committee action on a number of major pro-life bills, including the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act, enacted in 2003, and the Unborn Victims of Violence Act, enacted in 2004.
“Mike Pence brings a strong pro-life background to the Republican ticket, which contrasts with the extreme pro-abortion position of Hillary Clinton and the Democrats,” said Tobias.
Pence is a pro-life champion who has signed multiple pieces of pro-life legislation into law and led the fight in Congress to de-fund Planned Parenthood. His selection would go a long way towards mollifying concerns some pro-life voters have had about Trump, who has campaigned as a pro-life candidate but who has made some misstatements on abortion and Planned Parenthood.
Earlier this year, Pence signed House Bill 1337, which would ban abortion doctors from knowingly aborting an unborn baby solely because of a genetic disability such as Down syndrome, the unborn baby’s race or sex. The bill also has several other abortion-related measures, including a requirement that aborted or miscarried babies’ bodies be cremated or buried and another requirement that abortionists who have hospital admitting privileges renew them annually. The burial/cremation requirement backs up a law passed in 2015 by Gov. Pence requiring that aborted babies’ bodies be disposed of in a humane way.
“Throughout my public career, I have stood for the sanctity of life. HEA 1337 is a comprehensive pro-life measure that affirms the value of all human life, which is why I signed it into law today,” Governor Pence said in a statement.
Pence continued: “I believe that a society can be judged by how it deals with its most vulnerable—the aged, the infirm, the disabled and the unborn. HEA 1337 will ensure the dignified final treatment of the unborn and prohibits abortions that are based only on the unborn child’s sex, race, color, national origin, ancestry, or disability, including Down syndrome.”
He also started a state investigation of the Planned Parenthood abortion business after it was caught selling body parts of aborted babies.
Previously, Pence led the Congressional effort to defund the abortion corporation.
“Reports show that Planned Parenthood, America’s largest abortion provider, receives nearly one-third of its $1 billion annual budget from the federal government. And it’s about to get worse, because Obamacare is hiding even more tax dollars in handouts for abortion providers,” Pence explained at the time.
“Nearly 3,500 abortions are performed every day in America. That’s 3,500 lives taken away, many on the government dime without the knowledge or direct approval of taxpayers! It’s reprehensible and we can’t allow it to continue,” Pence added.
Pence referred to the Pledge With America that House Republicans put forward before the elections promising to dismantle ObamaCare, which contains a full prohibition on abortion funding, and to cut off taxpayer funding for abortions in other areas.
“I’m ready to deliver that promise with legislation that will prevent abortion providers like Planned Parenthood from receiving a single dime from the federal government,” the Indiana congressman wrote. “With a new Republican majority, Planned Parenthood is running scared.”
Pence said then he was not surprised Planned Parenthood attacked him for pressing for defunding.
“The fear of losing their federal funding has led them to target me for my pro-life positions. They’ve even named me to their 2010 Election Hall of Shame for advocating a pro-life agenda on Capitol Hill,” he said. “But I refuse to back down.”
“Our tax dollars should not be spent on abortions. I know it. You know it. Let’s make sure every member of Congress knows it,” he concluded.
Among the pro-life measures signed by Gov. Pence:
- Prohibit children from being targeted for abortion on the sole basis of their sex, race, national origin or a potential disability
- Provide final dignified disposition of aborted babies so that they aren’t treated as medical waste or used for experiments
- Establish health and safety standards are chemical abortion facilities
- Provide $1,000 adoption credit for parents
- Increase penalties for failure to properly report abortions
- Promote umbilical cord donation, an ethical alternative to embryonic stem cell research
- Require that abortion doctors document their admitting privileges with the State Department of Health
- Increase awareness of positive support for parents of Down syndrome children
- Provide information on perinatal hospice to parents who receive an adverse prenatal diagnosis
- Increase informed consent measures for women seeking abortions, including full color photos of fetal development printed in informed consent information
- Protect consumers from being forced to pay for private insurance plans that include unrestricted abortion coverage