Since leaving office, former Vice President Mike Pence has been the focus of significant speculation regarding his possible political ambitions.
In the latest sign that he has his eyes on future elected office, Pence is reportedly planning to speak at a fundraiser in New Hampshire — the first presidential primary state — later this year.
Of course, former President Donald Trump is clearly keeping his options open ahead of a potential White House bid in 2024, recently declaring that his supporters will be “very happy” upon hearing his decision.
As for the former vice president, he is set to address attendees of the Hillsborough County Republican Party’s annual Lincoln Reagan awards dinner in Manchester on June 3.
Hillsborough County GOP Chair Chris Ager told Fox News that the organization is “very excited to have the vice president as our keynote speaker.”
New Hampshire is an influential state in each presidential primary cycle as the first in the nation to hold its election. South Carolina hosts the first primary in the south, and Pence recently delivered an address in that state, marking his first major address since leaving office.
He has more speaking engagements lined up in the coming weeks and months, according to Fox News.
“Promises made, promises kept”
The spike in activity has fueled rumors that Pence is setting the stage for a 2024 presidential bid. He has also signed a lucrative book deal and launched a political group that advertises itself as an effort to reconcile Trumpism with traditional GOP politics.
Reports of tensions between Trump and Pence have flourished in the months since November’s presidential election, after which the then-president said Pence did not do enough to fight against supposed voter fraud. If Pence harbors any grudges against his ex-boss, however, it is not showing.
Instead, the former vice president has focused on attacking President Joe Biden’s policies as a contrast to the successes of the Trump administration. During his speech in South Carolina, Pence called for “pushing back on the liberal agenda,” touting the Trump administration as “four years of promises made, promises kept.”
Of course, the 2024 race is still a long way off and the potential GOP field remains dynamic. After two campaigns with Pence by his side, Trump has indicated that he is considering naming Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis as his running mate if he launches another White House bid.
It remains to be seen whether Trump and Pence are headed on a collision course ahead of the next presidential election.