Indiana Governor Mike Pence will not run for President in 2016. The announcement was confirmed by a spokeswoman Tuesday. Instead, he will run for re-election in the state.
“Gov. Mike Pence is a conservative leader and dedicated public servant who always puts Indiana first,” Indiana GOP Chairman Jeff Cardwell said in a statement. “We are excited the governor will formally announce his plans to seek re-election during our annual Spring Dinner, and we look forward to hearing his ideas for the future of our great state.”
Pence made the decision in part because of a law stating candidates cannot run for two offices on the same ballot. There was a brief push to change the law, however those efforts have stalled.
While he was initially seen as a strong contender, Pence has caused controversy recently as Governor. He signed a bill allowing Indiana businesses to turn away lesbian and gay customers. The basis was that it is against the religious beliefs of the business owner. The bill was titled the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
The religious freedom law led to backlash against the state and Governor Pence. Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy (D-CT) called Pence a “bigot.” In addition, Apple CEO Tim Cook announced he was boycotting Indiana.