The Latest: Pence accepts Trump’s offer to join GOP ticket

The Latest on the 2016 race for president (all times local):

11:50 a.m.

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence has officially accepted Donald Trump’s offer to join him on the Republican presidential ticket.

Pence says at an announcement event on Saturday in New York that Trump “is a great man and he will make a great president of the United States of America.”

He says he was “honored” to accept the offer to join the ticket, because the country needs “strong Republican leadership” and because presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton can never be president.


11:40 a.m.

Donald Trump says his selection of Indiana Gov. Mike Pence as his running mate is one that will help him restore manufacturing jobs nationwide and protect religious freedom.

The presumptive Republican nominee spoke for nearly a half-hour Saturday as he introduced his pick for vice president, calling Pence onto the stage at the end.

Trump touted Indiana’s falling unemployment rate and said that Pence would help his campaign and his potential administration protect the freedom of speech of religious institutions.

He also touted Pence’s family and said the governor “looks good.” He even noted that while Pence endorsed GOP rival Ted Cruz in Indiana’s primary, the governor also praised Trump as he did so.

But while Trump says Pence’s selection was partially driven by a desire to promote “party unity,” Trump took a moment to attack the so-called “Never Trump” delegates attending next week’s Republican National Convention.

He brags that they’ve been “crushed.”


11:30 a.m.

Donald Trump says the man who will join him on the Republican presidential ticket is a “man of character, honor and honesty.”

Trump calls Indiana Gov. Mike Pence “a solid, solid person” and is contrasting his character to what he deemed “the corruption of Hillary Clinton,” his likely Democratic opponent in the fall election.

Trump declares at an announcement event Saturday morning in New York, “What a difference between crooked Hillary Clinton and Mike Pence.”

The two men are scheduled to formally become their party’s nominees at next week’s Republican National Convention in Cleveland.

Trump says he and Pence are the “the law and order candidates,” adding that his potential administration would be far tougher on both foreign and domestic terrorism than would Clinton.


11:20 a.m.

Donald Trump is introducing Mike Pence as his running mate, calling Indiana’s governor “his first choice” to join him on the Republican presidential ticket.

Trump spoke with Pence on Saturday morning in a ballroom of a New York City hotel, a day after first introducing his choice for vice president in a Friday morning tweet.

The billionaire businessman strode first onto the stage that featured a backdrop of 10 American flags. The event did not feature any new “Trump-Pence” signs, instead displaying the standard “Trump” podium sign.

The presumptive GOP presidential nominee was cheered by a crowd of several hundred friends and local Republicans. He said he would champion “law and order” in the wake of this week’s terror attack in France.

He says of the new Republican ticket, “we are the law and order candidates.”


11:10 a.m.

Hillary Clinton’s campaign is seizing on the suggestion that Donald Trump may have wavered in making his vice presidential pick.

Clinton’s campaign released a web video early Saturday highlighting the campaign’s mixed signals and Trump’s contradictory statements about where he was in the selection process in the lead-up to his announcement Friday morning of Indiana Gov. Mike Pence.

The ad’s tagline says: “Donald Trump. Always divisive. Not so decisive.”

Trump’s campaign has strongly rejected the idea Trump had second thoughts about Pence. Campaign chairman Paul Manafort says Trump “never waffled” once he made his decision.

Trump and Pence are scheduled to make their first joint appearance Saturday morning in New York.


10:55 a.m.

Donald Trump is poised to officially name his running mate, Indiana Governor Mike Pence.

Trump and Pence will appear at a midtown Manhattan hotel on Saturday morning. It will be their first joint appearance since Trump announced his pick of Pence on Twitter Friday morning.

Pence is a favorite among Evangelical voters and the Republican Party’s conservative base. He was picked after Trump’s days-long and unusually public deliberation process.

Aides said the two men are not expected to take questions at Saturday’s announcement event.

It will take place in the same ballroom where Hillary Clinton and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio raised eyebrows by making a racially-questionable joke during a charity event this spring.


10:44 a.m.

The Northeast might not be the most fertile ground for Republican candidates for national office, but New York, New Jersey and Connecticut will be front-and-center at next week’s Republican National Convention.

Delegates from those states will have prime seats to watch billionaire businessman Donald Trump accept the GOP’s nomination for president.

The delegates from Wyoming, the District of Columbia and Washington state might want to bring binoculars.

Delegates are traditionally seated based on the political importance of their state, and Trump is from New York.

Battleground states Ohio and Florida also have pretty good seats. Oddly, competitive battleground states Colorado and Virginia are in the back.

Much of the leadership of the Never Trump movement is from Colorado, so those delegates might struggle to be heard.


3:28 a.m.

His running mate largely unknown to the public, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is introducing Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, a steady conservative with governing experience inside and outside of Washington.

Trump and Pence will appear together Saturday morning at a midtown Manhattan hotel, an unofficial kickoff event to the Republican National Convention two days before it opens in Cleveland.

While Trump showcases his choice, Democrat Hillary Clinton’s team is already painting Pence’s conservative social viewpoints as out of step with the mainstream.

Trump chose Pence in part to ease some Republicans’ concerns about Trump’s temperament and lack of political experience. Pence’s demeanor is as calm as Trump’s is fiery and he brings a sense of discipline that aides and advisers hope can bridge that gap.

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