More and more reports are circulating that presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump will officially name Indiana Gov. Mike Pence (R) as his running mate on Friday. The two agree on many policy fights, but they are still at odds on one issue that’s become a centerpiece of Trump’s campaign:
Calls to ban Muslims from entering the U.S. are offensive and unconstitutional.
— Governor Mike Pence (@GovPenceIN) December 8, 2015
A few months later, Pence endorsed Ted Cruz. Even in recent days, as rumors swirled that Pence might end up being Trump’s VP pick, he didn’t back away from his criticism of the Muslim ban.
Asked earlier this week whether he stands by the tweet, Pence told ABC News he’s “taken issue with candidates from time to time… But I’m supporting Donald Trump to be president of the United States of America.”
“I haven’t agreed with every one of my Republican colleagues or Democratic colleagues on every issue. But I’m supporting Donald Trump because we need change in this country,” Pence added. “I believe he represents the kind of strong leadership at home and abroad that will, to borrow a phrase, make America great again.”
Pence may not support a Muslim ban, but, like Trump, he’s opposed to the resettlement of Syrian refugees in the country. In November, Pence was one of 27 Republican governors who wrote to President Obama and asked him to “suspend all plans to resettle additional Syrian refugees.” Pence’s decision to block refugees from resettling in Indiana prompted the ACLU to sue him, and earlier this year, a federal judge ruled against Pence, writing that his stance “clearly discriminates” against refugees from the war-torn country.
Meanwhile, with the GOP primary behind him, Trump has recently seemed to soften his stance on the ban. Earlier this month, his lead foreign policy adviser, Walid Phares, said the “so-called ‘Muslim ban’” was merely a suggestion meant to provoke debate. In May, Trump himself said the ban “hasn’t been called for yet” and is “just a suggestion.”