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Trump likely to pick Pence as running mate: Report

world Updated: Jul 15, 2016 01:34 IST
Yashwant Raj
Yashwant Raj
Hindustan Times
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Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump (R) and Indiana Governor Mike Pence (L) wave to the crowd before addressing the crowd during a campaign stop at the Grand Park Events Center in Westfield.(REUTERS)

Donald Trump’s campaign has signalled he is likely to pick Indiana governor Mike Pence as his running mate, The New York Times reported on Thursday citing conversations his aides have had with Republican party officials.

Trump has said he will announce his pick on Friday,just two days ahead of the Republican convention in Cleveland, Ohio, where he is to be officially named as the presidential nominee.

Pence, 57, is on a shortlist of four people whom Trump has been vetting privately and publicly,as only Trump can, through joint campaign appearances.

The other three are New Jersey governor Chris Christie, who ran against Trump for the nomination, former House speaker Newt Gingrich and Alabama senator Jeff Sessions.

The Times said Trump advisers have told Republican party officials they are preparing an announcement with Pence, but warned the unpredictable Trump could still change his mind.

The presumptive Republican nominee conducted an unusual vetting process, including joint public appearances and meetings that were announced to the press.

Trump and his three adult children — Donald Trump Jr, Ivanka Trump and Eric Trump — had breakfast with Pence at his governor’s mansion on Wednesday, with TV crews outside.

And then they met also met the other contenders.

But Trump’s campaign chairman Paul Manafort told The Times:“We have not been reaching out to Washington to tell them to prepare for any particular candidate.”

Pence is a low-profile politician who,The Times said,was largely defined by his Christian faith, and is thus likely to help the nominee with conservatives still sceptical of him.