Pence, the former governor of Indiana who became former President Donald Trump’s running mate in 2016 and served as his vice president for four years, will be a distinguished visiting fellow at the Heritage Foundation.
The news was subsequently confirmed by the former vice president and the Heritage Foundation.
“The Heritage Foundation is a flagship of the conservative movement and I am profoundly honored to join them as a distinguished visiting fellow to advance conservative policies that will benefit every American,” Pence said in a release. “The Heritage Foundation helped shape my conservative philosophy for decades and played a pivotal role advancing conservative policies throughout the Trump Administration. I look forward to rolling up my sleeves and working with the all-star team at Heritage as we continue to take the case for a strong national defense, free markets and traditional values to policymakers across the Nation and to every American who cherishes our Heritage of Freedom.”
Heritage Foundation president Kay Cole James confirmed the announcement as well in the release from the group.
“Over the course of the past four years, our team at Heritage has worked closely with members of the Trump administration on a host of policy accomplishments,” James said. “That’s why I am excited Vice President Mike Pence will join forces with Heritage to ensure we continue to advance conservative principles and policy solutions. His allegiance to the Constitution and commitment to advancing a conservative policy agenda make him an outstanding fit for The Heritage Foundation.”
Pence was one of Trump’s most trusted allies in his administration, and served in the final year of the Trump presidency as the chairman of the White House Coronavirus Task Force tasked with responding to the pandemic. Pence also had an at times contentious but widely praised debate performance with now Vice President Kamala Harris in October 2020, and was always seen as a steady hand in an oftentimes-chaotic West Wing at the Trump White House.
Pence regularly traveled the country hyping Trump’s agenda, and was one of Trump’s most effective messengers on everything from the pandemic to trade deals like the USMCA to the U.S. response to the rise of the Chinese Communist Party and efforts to secure the border and control the immigration system. He is also viewed as a very likely 2024 GOP presidential contender in a field that may be crowded depending on who runs. The actions–like joining Heritage–that Pence takes next will in many ways shape any potential campaign.
In her statement from Heritage, James thanked Pence for his service as vice president and touted a lot of the work the Heritage Foundation did with the Trump administration.
“Mike Pence served with honor and excellence in his home state of Indiana as a congressman and as governor before becoming one of the most consequential vice presidents of our time,” James said. “A man of faith, principle, and character, Vice President Pence is a heroic protector and defender the Constitution and the values that unite us as a nation. I am overjoyed that Heritage will continue to work alongside Vice President Pence as we have for the last 30 years. As much as we’ve accomplished in that time, especially over the last four years, there is so much more to be done. Knowing that Vice President Pence is still in the fight is an adrenaline shot for the entire conservative movement.” ✪