Indiana Governor and Republican Vice-Presidential nominee Mike Pence has officially endorsed Lt. Governor Eric Holcomb to be his replacement on the ballot.
Holcomb is competing for the spot with Congressman Todd Rokita and Congresswoman Susan Brooks. State Senator Jim Tomes of southern Indiana is also running.
A copy of the letter is below. The state central committee will meet on Tuesday to decide who should replace Pence. There are 22 members on the committee, to win, a candidate only needs 12 votes.
July 22, 2016
Members of the Indiana Republican State Committee:
Today concludes a truly unforgettable week for my family and for the Indiana Republican Party. Karen and I are humbled by your prayers and well wishes; my selection as nominee for Vice President is a reflection of the hard work and success of the Hoosier State, and specifically twelve years of strong Republican leadership at the state level. You all have played a vital role in supporting that movement, and are owed a debt of gratitude.
I am honored to serve as your Governor, and taking on this challenge results in making a difficult decision not to run for re-election. Together we have achieved a great deal in improving the lives of Hoosiers, and I am confident that we will be leaving this office with our state as prosperous as any time in our state’s history.
To continue our momentum, it is imperative that we build upon twelve years of progress, innovation and success by selecting a proven leader and dedicated public servant. Fortunately, you are blessed to have several fine choices to continue our proud legacy.
As members of the Indiana Republican State Committee, you are tasked with a historic duty, one in which I know you are approaching with a discerning heart. Your decision will have a major impact in charting a path for the future of our state and ensuring we continue our momentum as a national leader in job growth, economic development, and sound fiscal management. This decision is yours alone, and I will respect that decision and support the nominee you deem fit to serve.
Over the past week, Hoosiers have had an opportunity to weigh in and offer their recommendations on who they feel is best fit to lead our party on the ballot and in the statehouse. While the choice you face is difficult, it displays the depth of talent the Indiana Republican Party has produced over the past decade, with sterling public servants at the federal and state levels. I have served with these fine Hoosiers and they are the embodiment of servant leadership.
However, as I prayerfully considered the group offering themselves to succeed me, I concluded that I made my choice several months ago. When selecting my Lt. Governor in March, the primary factor was who would be able to best serve the State of Indiana in the event I could no longer perform my duties as Governor. As I concluded before, there is no better individual to lead our State than Eric Holcomb.
When I asked Eric to take on this vitally important constitutional role, once again he answered the call. I’ve known Eric Holcomb for more than twenty years, and I believe he is one of the best prepared individuals in recent memory to take on the job of Governor. His range of service to our State and our Nation makes him uniquely qualified to fill this role.
A lifelong Hoosier, Eric followed his studies at Hanover College by putting on the uniform of the United States Navy. He served a variety of roles for Governor Mitch Daniels as a senior member instrumental in his election in 2004, and running a re-election effort that resulted in a historic landslide victory. As Deputy Chief of Staff, Eric was a key member of a group that transformed state government and set our State on a new course that cut taxes, balanced budgets, and ushered in groundbreaking education reform. Later, he earned the respect and acclaim of this group as Chairman of the Indiana Republican Party, and was a trusted advisor that helped ensure my election in 2012. Senator Dan Coats tapped Eric to lend his considerable talent as Chief of Staff and served with distinction. And, now he serves as my closest confident, partner and friend.
Eric instantly hit the ground running as Lt. Governor, traveling the State and providing value in areas of agriculture, community and rural affairs, and economic development, among many others. He showed a great range of policy expertise and Hoosiers were able to witness firsthand that Eric is ready to govern on Day one.
As Karen and I embark on a mission to restore strong Republican leadership to our nation, I do so with optimism about the boundless future of Indiana, and I wholeheartedly endorse Lt. Governor Eric Holcomb to serve as the Republican nominee for Governor of Indiana in the upcoming election. I would be grateful if you would consider doing the same. Eric will put together a robust campaign utilizing decades of valuable experience in all 92 counties, and I look forward to supporting his efforts in continuing the progress that we all have worked so hard to achieve.
As I serve out the remainder of my term as Governor, please know how grateful Karen and I will always be for your support and prayers throughout our career. While I am deeply humbled to have the opportunity to run as the Republican nominee for Vice President of the United States, our hearts will always be back home again in Indiana.
Thank you for your service to our party and state.
Michael R. Pence
Governor of Indiana
Brooks issued the followed statement…
“I appreciate that the Governor is in a tough position knowing how close he and Eric Holcomb have become. I have known the governor for over 30 years and I know him to be very loyal. But this endorsement doesn’t change my focus. It is clear the 22 State Committee members take their responsibility for making this historic decision very seriously, and I appreciate Governor Pence’s acknowledgement that the decision lies alone with them and that he will support the nominee they choose. I am confident I am the strongest candidate to beat John Gregg in the Fall, and I will continue my efforts to demonstrate that to the committee.”