Trump’s choice for vice president is Indiana's governor, Mike Pence. If you're not familiar with this Republican, here's what you need to know.
Born and raised in Indiana, Pence is an attorney and a Republican politician. He was a U.S. representative for Indiana’s 2nd and 6th districts from 2001 until 2013, when he was elected governor of Indiana. He’s a conservative and a big supporter of the Tea Party.
Here’s a brief primer on Pence’s record on women’s health, the poor and the gay community.
During his tenure as congressman and governor, Pence has been against abortion rights, LGBTQ rights and helping low-income families, just to name a few.
In early 2016, Pence signed a measure that would prevent women from getting an abortion because of the race, gender or disability of the fetus. It would also put restrictions on doctors who performed these abortions and would make them liable if found they had performed the procedure for one of the prohibited reasons. The medical community wasn’t too thrilled about this law, since it believes the law would make women self-censor about their conditions to their doctors.
That bill also would have required full funeral services for fetuses and fetal tissue, regardless of how long they had been in utero, —and whether they were aborted or miscarried. According to Vox, this anti-abortion bill was even too extreme for pro-life Republicans. Fortunately, following the Supreme Court’s landmark abortion decision in June, a federal court blocked this law from going into effect.
In 2011, when Pence was a U.S. representative, he pushed an amendment through the House to defund Planned Parenthood. He carried out his plan to continue defunding Planned Parenthood when he was governor. In 2014, Indiana state funds for Planned Parenthood were cut almost in half, forcing five of its clinics—none of which actually performed abortions—to close. However, these clinics did perform STD testing and as a result of their closure, there was an HIV outbreak in Scott County, home to one of the five closed clinics.
He made life tougher for low-income families when he was in the U.S. Congress. He voted against raising the minimum wage and expanding healthcare for low-income children. He also voted against expanding funding for Section 8 Housing, which helps poorer families pay rent.
Pence is also against gay marriage. In 2003, while serving in Congress, he co-sponsored an amendment that would have prohibited it. In 2007, he voted against the Employee Non-Discrimination Act. He also voted against repealing the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. As governor, in March 2015, he signed a bill allowing businesses to discriminate against gay people due to their religious beliefs.
As result of that bill, Indiana took a hit economically when well-known athletes and actors called for a boycott of the state.