Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has chosen Indiana Gov. Mike Pence as his running mate, tapping a low-key social conservative ahead of next week’s Republican National Convention, NBC News reports.
The selection, which ended days of speculation, was confirmed to NBC News sources Thursday.
Trump was expected to make an official announcement on his vice-presidential pick Friday, the same day as Pence's deadline to withdraw from the governor's race, but he tweeted later Thursday that in light of a deadly attack in Southern France, he would be postponing the announcement.
"My prayers and condolences to the victims and families of the terrible tragedy in Nice, France," he wrote. "We are with you in every way!"
Pence was seen getting out of a plane and into an SUV at a New York-area airport Thursday afternoon.
Sources with knowledge of the pick told NBC News Pence would be Trump's ultimate choice, though the candidate maintained during a television interview on Thursday evening that he has not made a "final, final decision." He said he will announce Friday when the announcement would be rescheduled for, according to NBC News.
The choice comes just two days after Pence and Trump appeared at a rally together in Indiana. On Wednesday, Trump and his family were seen at Pence's Indiana home.
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In a brief news conference Wednesday, Pence said he was "honored" and "humbled" to be considered.
"The conversations that we've had between two families are something Karen and I will cherish the rest of our lives, whatever the outcome," he said at the time.
Pence is running for re-election, but Indiana law prevents him from seeking two offices at once.
Trump and his family also met with other politicians thought to be in the running to serve as his vice president, should he win the election in November. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Sen. Jeff Sessions, of Alabama were both spotted at his hotel Wednesday. Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner also met privately with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie Tuesday, NBC News reported.
Pence established himself as the group’s frontrunner after meeting with Trump earlier this month at one of the billionaire’s golf courses in New Jersey. After the meeting, Trump tweeted that he was “very impressed” with Pence.
Before being sworn in as Indiana’s governor in 2013, Pence served as a congressman for 12 years. His name was also floated as a possible presidential candidate in 2008 and 2012.
Pence, 57, says he is a champion of smaller government and claims credit for the largest state tax cuts in Indiana history but he also won federal approval for Obamacare Medicaid expansion with added provisions that conservatives liked.
During the Indiana primary, he endorsed Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, but at the same time praised Trump.
He faced sharp criticism last year after signing a controversial "religious freedom" bill that many believed would allow for discrimination against the LGBT community. Following widespread condemnation, Pence agreed to amend the law to clarify its intent.
In March, Pence backed a controversial abortion measure that banned abortions performed because of the fetus's race, gender or a disability, NBC News reports. The legislation also made the receipt, sale or transfer of fetal tissue a felony. The measure was ultimately blocked by a federal judge last month.
Born and raised in Columbus, Indiana, he graduated from Hanover College in Hanover, Indiana, and Indiana University School of Law. He and his wife have three children. His grandfather, whom Pence is named for, was a Chicago bus driver who emigrated to Ellis Island from Ireland.