The choice appeared to be primarily between Pence, Governor Chris Christie and former Speaker Newt Gingrich.
My criteria was as follows:
- Trump and the convention’s primary task is to unify the party with a strong offering to fiscal and social conservatives and a vice presidential nominee the D.C. establishment at least knows as reliable. Pence was the only candidate that met the criteria. He’s a Tea Party stalwart, evangelical 12-term House member and current governor. He is someone Senator Cory Gardner, who hasn’t got on the Trump bandwagon, could endorse. In fact, Speaker Tim Ryan considers him a friend.
- The second criterion was contrast. As Gingrich said, picking him would be adding another pirate to the ticket. So would Christie. Trump handles the unpredictability and unconventionalism well enough. Who needs two firebrands?
Democrats wasted no time going on the attack with an email from Hillary Clinton’s Chairman, John Podesta, as to how extreme Mike Pence is:
“Pence is the most extreme pick in a generation and was one of the earliest advocates for the Tea Party. He was the first of GOP leadership to join Michele Bachmann’s Tea Party Caucus.”Democrats probably think he was a good choice too.