CLEVELAND—“I’m a Christian, a conservative, and a Republican, in that order,” Indiana Gov. Mike Pence declared to America at the Republication National Convention in Cleveland to the wild applause of the assembled delegates, launching into a speech showcasing his evangelical Christian faith—including hidden Bible verses—thrilling America’s Christian population and giving them a huge reason to be for Donald Trump, in addition to already being against Hillary Clinton.
As Breitbart News’s profile on the Indiana governor last week explained in detail, Pence has been using that line for more than a decade, unapologetically telling the world that for Pence, conservative principles trump party affiliation, and his personal faith in Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior trumps everything, informing every aspect of his life.
Faith was an influence from early in Pence’s life, as he explained:
When I was young, I watched my mom and dad build everything that matters – a family, a business, and a good name. I was raised to believe in hard work, faith and family. My dad, Ed Pence, was a combat veteran in Korea who ran gas stations in our small town, and was a great father.
Although Pence always understood the value of faith, he became a born-again Christian in college, beginning almost four decades of regular Bible reading, family prayers, and being active in church.
His faith also makes Pence the consummate family man, as seen by how he introduced his family:
The best thing that ever happened to me—even counting tonight—is that 31 years ago, I married the girl of my dreams, a school teacher and artist. She’s everything to me. Let me introduce you to my wonderful wife, Karen Pence.
And regardless of any title I ever hold, the most important job I’ll ever have is spelled D-A-D. Karen and I are blessed to be the parents of the three greatest kids in the world: a writer named Charlotte, a college student named Audrey, and a Second Lieutenant in the Marine Corps, Michael J. Pence. Proud of you guys.
Pence’s faith-based Christian worldview also informs how he sized up his running mate, Donald Trump, of whom he said, “And if you doubt what I’m saying, remember—as we say back home—you can’t fake good kids,” noting the incredible successes that each of the Trump children have become, and how well they raise their own families.
The vice presidential nominee is passionately dedicated to his own children. When indicting Clinton for her “what difference does it make?” response to the Benghazi attacks that killed four Americans, Pence took it personally, thundering, “As the proud father of a United States Marine, let me say from my heart, anyone who said that, anyone who did that, should be disqualified from ever serving as commander in chief of the Armed Forces of the United States.”
Pence spoke at length about the Supreme Court, which is of paramount concern for conservatives of all stripes—including America’s Christians—because the First Amendment provides people of all peaceful faiths all the protection they need to live their lives and share and practice their faith openly—so long as America has a Supreme Court majority that respects religious liberty and the rights of parents and unborn children.
Earlier in the day on Wednesday, pro-life leaders praised Pence at a Cleveland event, and Pence’s longstanding commitment as a leader on supporting constitutional conservatives on the U.S. Supreme Court was recently on display, as Pence appointed a true originalist to the Indiana Supreme Court.
Pence truly believes that God’s blessing is essential to turning the nation around after eight years of radical secular liberalism under Obama and Clinton, echoing Ronald Reagan’s famous 1964 speech supporting Barry Goldwater, and adding an emphasis on faith, saying, “My fellow Americans, I believe we have come to another rendezvous with destiny, and I have faith—faith in the boundless capacity of the American people and faith that God can still heal our land.”
In calling for party and national unity, Pence affirmed his belief, “that we are, as we have always been, one nation, under God.”
He also showed how central his Christian faith is to how he approaches public service, pledging, “Should I have the awesome privilege to serve as your vice president, I promise to keep faith with that conviction, to pray daily for a wise and ‘discerning heart … for who is able to govern this great people of yours, O God?’”
The mainstream media failed to recognize that Pence was quoting directly from the Bible. In 2 Chronicles 1:10, Solomon prayed, “Give me now wisdom and knowledge to go out and come in before this people, for who can govern this people of yours, which is so great?”
Observant Christians across the nation are surely overjoyed at one of their own expressing such humility, and such a sense of his need for God’s blessing to help lead the nation, a leader with such a deep knowledge of the Scriptures that biblical verses find their way into his speeches.
America’s Christian community has been of two opinions about Trump, many supporting him, but others skeptical. Trump’s picking a man like Pence as his running will give many of them a big reason to enthusiastically jump onto the Trump Train.
Ken Klukowski is senior legal editor for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @kenklukowski.