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Donald Trump has picked this man as his choice for Vice President

Mike Pence, the governor of Indiana, will serve as Trump’s running mate in the race to the White House.

REPUBLICAN WHITE HOUSE candidate Donald Trump has announced Mike Pence, the governor of Indiana, as his choice for vice president, ending weeks of intense speculation and putting a conservative stalwart on the ticket.

“I am pleased to announce that I have chosen Governor Mike Pence as my Vice Presidential running mate,” Trump posted on Twitter, adding that he would host a press conference tomorrow morning.

The Christian conservative adds precious experience in Washington politics – and a dose of good manners – to the GOP ticket.

Governor of the Midwest state since only January 2013, the 57-year-old is a lawyer by training and used to host a radio talk show, so his communication skills are strong.

And he knows his way around Washington: He held a seat in the House of Representatives from 2001 to 2013 and served as chairman of the House Republican Conference – the party’s third most important position on Capitol Hill – from 2009 to 2011.

GOP 2016 Trump Pence campaigning with Trump earlier this week. Source: Associated Press

Seen as disciplined and relatively discreet, Pence was apparently the favorite of Trump’s children, who exercise much influence over the brash billionaire and political novice as he campaigns for president.

US networks reported yesterday that Pence had accepted the VP slot, and Trump had planned to formally declare his running mate pick today.

It was decided earlier today that the announcement would be postponed in light of the attack in Nice – however, as Pence had to decide whether or not to withdraw from the gubernatorial race in his state by today, it appears the Trump team decided it was best to make a lower-profile, social media-only announcement.

Pence’s qualities stand in contrast to the more unpredictable personalities of two other politicians who were considered by Trump: New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and former House speaker Newt Gingrich of Georgia.

The current House speaker, Paul Ryan, whose relations with Trump are delicate, says he himself considers Pence a friend.

Smooth ruffled feathers

Pence’s connections could help to ease tensions with a Republican Party still having a hard time digesting Trump, and to raise funds for the campaign.

And Pence’s quiet, low-profile personality, shaped in large part by his Christian faith, poses little threat of overshadowing that of Trump, who values loyalty in the people who work with him.

Source: USA TODAY/YouTube

Until now Trump and Pence did not know each other particularly well.

Pence is a conservative defender of family values, very religious, against abortion and gay marriage, and opposed to the idea of the US taking in Syrian refugees.

He has described himself as “a Christian, a conservative and a Republican, in that order.”

As governor he has signed bills making it harder for women in Indiana to have abortions, with Indiana the second US state to prohibit ending a pregnancy because the fetus suffers abnormalities.

And he has drawn criticism for a law that critics say discriminates against the LGBT community.

Trump has met with Pence several times in recent days and campaigned with him on Tuesday evening in Indiana.

- © AFP, 2016

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