Former Vice President Mike Pence promised “the best days of the greatest nation on earth are yet to come” in a video released Wednesday formally launching his campaign for the Republican nomination for president.
“Different times call for different leadership,” Pence, who served four years alongside President Donald Trump, says in the video, released hours ahead of a kickoff event in Des Moines. “Today our party and our country need a leader that’ll appeal, as Lincoln said, to the better angels of our nature.”
While it would be “easy to stay on the sidelines,” he adds, “that’s not how I was raised. That’s why today, before God and my family, I’m announcing I’m running for president of the United States.”
Pence is staking his presidential hopes on Iowa as he launches a campaign that will make him the first vice president in modern history to take on his former running mate.
Pence’s campaign will also test the party’s appetite for a socially conservative, mild-mannered, and religious candidate. And it will show whether Pence still has a political future after Jan. 6, 2021, with a large portion of GOP voters believing that the 2020 election was stolen and that Pence had the power to reject the results of the election, won by Democrat Joe Biden.
Pence and his advisers see Iowa — the state that will cast the first votes of the GOP nominating calendar — as key to his potential pathway to the nomination. Its caucus-goers include a large portion of evangelical Christian voters, whom they see as a natural constituency for Pence. They also think Pence, who represented Indiana in Congress and as governor, is a good personality fit with the Midwestern state.
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