Donald Trump's choice as a running mate is expected this week, only days before the start of the Republican National Convention, according to several reports.
The presumptive Republican candidate has said he is looking for a running mate who has something he lacks - political experience – and if the people who appear to be undergoing the vetting process are an indication, that’s exactly what is happening.
"We're vetting a lot of good people and we have a lot of interest in people that want to leave high positions and do this," Trump said of the people who are on his reported “short list.”
High-profile candidates for the job – former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie – have been joined by others who may not be as familiar.
During the past week it was reported that Indiana Gov. Mike Pence is reportedly being strongly considered by Trump’s campaign for the vice presidential spot. Pence and his wife, Karen, met with Trump at his New Jersey golf club on Saturday, CNN reported.
Some are surprised at the Trump campaign’s interest in Pence who endorsed Texas Sen. Ted Cruz for president in Indiana’s Republican primary.
If Trump decides to wait for the convention to announce a running mate, the public will know one way or the other on Pence before then – he has to file paperwork for his bid for a second term as the governor of Indiana by noon Friday.
Pence, a staunch conservative, is rumored to be strongly supported by the right wing’s most far right members. He told reporters Monday that he's prepared to make the "case" for the presumed GOP presidential nominee "anywhere across the country that Donald Trump would want me to."
The Associated Press reported that Pence is listed as a host of a private fundraiser for Trump on Tuesday, and also says he will attend an evening Trump rally in suburban Indianapolis.
Trump’s campaign has reportedly vetted one woman – Sen. Joni Ernst (R, Iowa) – but beyond her, all the potential running mates have been male, over 50 and white. Trump’s campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, has said Trump is not interested in choosing a woman or minority only for the sake of appealing to a particular type of voter.
A surprising potential VP choice that surfaced this weekend is less well-known, at least as far as politicians go. Word leaked Saturday that Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn is also being vetted by Trump’s campaign. Flynn, a registered Democrat, previously ran the Defense Intelligence Agency.
Political party aside, Flynn likely didn’t endear himself to the conservative wing of the party with his comments about his belief in a woman’s right to choose when it comes to abortion.
According to The Washington Post, it’s Trump himself who decided to look toward a former military officer as a potential running mate, saying that national unrest would call for a “tough and steady” presence on the GOP ticket. The Washington Post quoted sources with the campaign who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
Trump told Fox News Wednesday, “I like the generals. I like the concept of the generals. We’re thinking about — actually there are two of them that are under consideration.” He did not name either one he said was under consideration.
Flynn’s vetting by the Trump campaign was first reported by the New York Post, but Flynn denied in an interview with the newspaper that he was under consideration.
Flynn has a book coming out Tuesday called, "Field of Fight: How We Can Win the Global War Against Radical Islam and Its Allies.”
Who is out:
One person who campaigned with Trump on what some called a “tryout,” has withdrawn his name from consideration. Tennessee Sen. Bob Corker said the job is not for him.
“I feel like there are people better suited for that role, and I’m better suited for other kinds of roles," Corker said.
Ernst has all but said she is no longer interested in the spot, according to reports.