Former Vice President Mike Pence will announce his candidacy for president in a launch expected next week, an unnamed source told NBC News, which broke the story.
Currently, Pence is only polling around five percent in the race for the Republican nomination in the primary election, according to a recent survey from Morning Consult. Leading the pack is former President Donald Trump, who — if the election were held today — would receive 56 percent support, which is a 34-point lead over Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Pence’s team is planning to open his campaign with a video and kickoff speech in Des Moines, Iowa, according to the report.
“We view this race as absolutely wide open, and Iowa is really going to solidify itself as the pivotal player,” the person familiar with Pence’s plans told NBC News. “It’s a place that values Mike Pence’s principles — traditional conservative principles — deep-rooted faith and uncommon character.”
The source added that Pence is planning to campaign in all 99 Iowa counties before the caucuses. Earlier this month, associates of Pence said a super PAC has been launched to support his candidacy and that they would help organize across all 99 counties.
Pence is unlikely to draw enough support to win, with most of the GOP base remaining loyal to Trump and — as recent data has shown — unlikely to consider supporting any other candidate in the primary.
The former vice president would also have difficulty picking up GOP voters still angered by his refusal to delay certification of the 2020 election, which many still consider to have been stolen.
A Jan. 5, 2021 memo to Pence from Gregory Jacob, his chief legal counsel, explained to the vice president that singlehandedly delaying the certification of the election would be breaking federal law (the Electoral Count Act) and that he “would likely lose in court.”
Jacob also warned that even in a best case scenario, where courts didn’t get involved, Pence would likely find himself in a standoff with both chambers of congress, as well as most of the relevant state legislatures.
In another sign of Pence’s waning popularity, he was just dropped from an appearance at next week’s Georgia GOP convention and replaced with Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake.
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