Former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich played coy over his chances at becoming Donald Trump’s running mate, saying Thursday he had yet to be informed of the businessman’s decision even as multiple media outlets reported that Indiana Gov. Mike Pence was picked for the job.
In an address on Facebook Live, the ex-Georgia lawmaker said “all sorts of rumors are swirling” about Trump’s decision and that he was flattered the competition appears to be down to him and Pence.
Trump tapped Pence to be his running mate on Thursday, according to multiple media reports, as he tried to spark enthusiasm among evangelical Republicans who have so far been skeptical of the free-wheeling real estate mogul’s campaign.
Trump’s campaign said a decision has not been made yet, and other Republicans cautioned that he may change his mind on his apparent decision. A formal announcement was scheduled for Friday at 11 a.m. in New York but Trump tweeted Thursday afternoon that he would postpone the news conference following the attack in Nice, France.
Gingrich said he went through an arduous vetting process that included 113 detailed questions and a request for everything he had written. He also met with Trump for about two and a half hours on Wednesday in Indianapolis in a final audition, Gingrich said.
“I told him quite directly he had a choice between having two pirates on the ticket and a pirate and a relatively stable, more normal person,” Gingrich said, referring to Pence’s more subdued personality. “That’s something Trump has to personally do as he sees it through his perspective.”
He praised Pence as a candidate who would have “a huge Midwestern appeal” and help burnish the Republican’s attempt to win Michigan, Ohio and other competitive states. He also made his own last-ditch case for the job, saying “I have some appeal in virtually every state.”
“Tomorrow I’m going to spend some time after the Trump announcement – whether I’m the person who is announced or we have Mike Pence, I’m going to do a Facebook Live,” he said. “And I promise you if I am the nominee, I’ll be a nominee with Facebook Live. You’ll have lots of opportunities.”
Watch Gingrich here: