Signs point to Mike Pence bowing out of presidential race to run for governor

Pundits have been speculating regarding the plans of my favorite Congressman, Mike Pence, after he won the straw poll for President at the Values Voter conference a few months ago  and when he resigned as the Chairman of the Republican Conference late last year -citing plans that would detract from his being able to fulfill the duties of that leadership position.

Late last year, he told inquiring minds that he would be making his decision regarding his plans early this year. But now the signs are indicating that he intends to run for the governor's office opening up in Indiana when the term-limited Mitch Daniels steps down in 2012 (Daniels, a budget wizard, is also being touted as a potential Presidential candidate in 2012). Ed Morrissey picks up a nugget of information first publicized by Howey Politics Indiana: a schedule for Mike Pence in the next few months. He will indeed be a busy man -- in Indiana.

U.S. Rep. Mike Pence is scheduling Republican Lincoln Days Dinner all over Indiana, Howey Politics Indiana has learned. It is the best clue yet that he is preparing to launch a 2012 Indiana gubernatorial campaign, as opposed to seeking the presidency. "He is scheduling larger counties," a Republican source told HPI on Monday. "If he is running for President, it would be an interesting and novel strategy. We could call it the Win Indiana Strategy!" If Pence were to launch a presidential campaign, he would be more likely to spend this winter and spring in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina -- the key early primary and caucus states.

He was also busy last year-but again, mostly in Indiana -- raising a red flag among some that the third-highest ranking GOP leader was not hitting the pavement for candidates across America.

This makes eminent sense.

He will be a popular choice to replace Daniels. He already enjoys statewide name recognition -- not just because of his 10-year career in Congress and his high-profile national image as a conservative stalwart and star, but also because he hosted a statewide radio program earlier in his life. He also chaired a think tank that focused on free enterprise ideas for Indiana.

Conversely, he would have had a more challenging climb to the Presidency due to his lack of executive experience (a key quality voters will be looking for in 2012, given the lack of such experience in the current Oval Office occupant) and because many of the big money sources have already been locked up by the likes of Mitt Romney. While Tea Party activists might have been able to pour money into his campaign, it is also helpful to have a network already in place to tap campaign help. Tea Parties might be able to fund local contests but a national one is a far different beat (even Barack Obama had to rely on big donors, and not small donors, despite the public relations spin to the contrary).

The field is open for him, as Evan Bayh on the Democratic side has already foresworn a run for the Governorship in 2012.

As Governor, Pence can apply the same free enterprise ideas that have already helped Indiana enjoy a relatively strong economy (one of Daniel's first acts was an executive order banning collective bargaining rights of state employees). Pence has been a fountain of wonderful, market-based solutions over the years. He is a graceful writer, a telegenic presence, and a charismatic speaker. But these only go so far and people will want to see how effective these ideas can be when put in place by a leader.

Remember, states are laboratories. Rick Scott in Florida already has embarked on a plan to make Florida a test case for many free enterprise solutions to problems besetting that state. I would expect Pence to become a leader among governors -- perhaps, replacing Haley Barbour as chairman of the Republican Governors Association. This spot would be an ideal one form the viewpoint of expanding his national footprint and building a network of donors and activists that can be used to pave a road to the White House.

As Governor, Pence can also make Indiana a showcase for these programs.  He will have a more impressive resume to run with in the future. He will also be in a good shape to be able to develop a national profile.

This will disappoint many voters -- and pundits like Erik Erickson of Red State who have been trying to drum up support for Pence to run for the Presidency in 2012 . But what if the economy improves enough to re-elect Barack Obama in 2012? What if the Pence for President boomlet fizzles early, leaving a black mark against a future run? That would make a future run that much more arduous.

Moreover,  Mike Pence is a relatively young man (51) and will have many years to run for the Presidency when the time is ripe. His time may not yet have come -- but I suspect it will.
Pundits have been speculating regarding the plans of my favorite Congressman, Mike Pence, after he won the straw poll for President at the Values Voter conference a few months ago  and when he resigned as the Chairman of the Republican Conference late last year -citing plans that would detract from his being able to fulfill the duties of that leadership position.

Late last year, he told inquiring minds that he would be making his decision regarding his plans early this year. But now the signs are indicating that he intends to run for the governor's office opening up in Indiana when the term-limited Mitch Daniels steps down in 2012 (Daniels, a budget wizard, is also being touted as a potential Presidential candidate in 2012). Ed Morrissey picks up a nugget of information first publicized by Howey Politics Indiana: a schedule for Mike Pence in the next few months. He will indeed be a busy man -- in Indiana.

U.S. Rep. Mike Pence is scheduling Republican Lincoln Days Dinner all over Indiana, Howey Politics Indiana has learned. It is the best clue yet that he is preparing to launch a 2012 Indiana gubernatorial campaign, as opposed to seeking the presidency. "He is scheduling larger counties," a Republican source told HPI on Monday. "If he is running for President, it would be an interesting and novel strategy. We could call it the Win Indiana Strategy!" If Pence were to launch a presidential campaign, he would be more likely to spend this winter and spring in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina -- the key early primary and caucus states.

He was also busy last year-but again, mostly in Indiana -- raising a red flag among some that the third-highest ranking GOP leader was not hitting the pavement for candidates across America.

This makes eminent sense.

He will be a popular choice to replace Daniels. He already enjoys statewide name recognition -- not just because of his 10-year career in Congress and his high-profile national image as a conservative stalwart and star, but also because he hosted a statewide radio program earlier in his life. He also chaired a think tank that focused on free enterprise ideas for Indiana.

Conversely, he would have had a more challenging climb to the Presidency due to his lack of executive experience (a key quality voters will be looking for in 2012, given the lack of such experience in the current Oval Office occupant) and because many of the big money sources have already been locked up by the likes of Mitt Romney. While Tea Party activists might have been able to pour money into his campaign, it is also helpful to have a network already in place to tap campaign help. Tea Parties might be able to fund local contests but a national one is a far different beat (even Barack Obama had to rely on big donors, and not small donors, despite the public relations spin to the contrary).

The field is open for him, as Evan Bayh on the Democratic side has already foresworn a run for the Governorship in 2012.

As Governor, Pence can apply the same free enterprise ideas that have already helped Indiana enjoy a relatively strong economy (one of Daniel's first acts was an executive order banning collective bargaining rights of state employees). Pence has been a fountain of wonderful, market-based solutions over the years. He is a graceful writer, a telegenic presence, and a charismatic speaker. But these only go so far and people will want to see how effective these ideas can be when put in place by a leader.

Remember, states are laboratories. Rick Scott in Florida already has embarked on a plan to make Florida a test case for many free enterprise solutions to problems besetting that state. I would expect Pence to become a leader among governors -- perhaps, replacing Haley Barbour as chairman of the Republican Governors Association. This spot would be an ideal one form the viewpoint of expanding his national footprint and building a network of donors and activists that can be used to pave a road to the White House.

As Governor, Pence can also make Indiana a showcase for these programs.  He will have a more impressive resume to run with in the future. He will also be in a good shape to be able to develop a national profile.

This will disappoint many voters -- and pundits like Erik Erickson of Red State who have been trying to drum up support for Pence to run for the Presidency in 2012 . But what if the economy improves enough to re-elect Barack Obama in 2012? What if the Pence for President boomlet fizzles early, leaving a black mark against a future run? That would make a future run that much more arduous.

Moreover,  Mike Pence is a relatively young man (51) and will have many years to run for the Presidency when the time is ripe. His time may not yet have come -- but I suspect it will.

RECENT VIDEOS