To prevail in a Republican presidential primary, Pence may have to reinforce his loyalty to Trump while defending his decisions during the final days of the administration when the president falsely alleged widespread voter fraud, contributing to a deadly riot at the U.S. Capitol. If anyone can achieve this awkward balance, some Republicans say, it’s Pence.
Donald Trump's heir? Mike Pence reemerges, lays groundwork for 2024 run
Pence declined to comment for this story. For their part, Trump aides warn against reading too much into the omission during the podcast interview.
“I think if he does get in he’s a viable candidate,” added Rep. Jeff Duncan of South Carolina, whose endorsement could provide Pence with a boost if he becomes a candidate. “He’s a force to be reckoned with.”