Governor Mike Pence is in Washington D.C. this weekend, taking part in meetings with the National Governors Association and with the Republican Governors' Association- a group that includes a who's who of potential 2016 presidential candidates.
Further stoking speculation, Pence will be back in the D.C. area the following weekend to be the keynote speaker at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference Reagan dinner, and he has meetings and speaking engagements in Florida and Las Vegas in the coming months that could prove crucial if he does want to run for president.
Earlier this week, Pence was asked again about his future plans.
“Have I made a decision about my future? No. (But) whatever the future holds, I have every intention of talking about the progress we’ve made here in Indiana and the policies and approach that I think our party should embrace in the years ahead, whoever’s leading the party,” said Pence in a Tuesday news conference.
Still, one leading Democrat says he’d like Pence to make up his mind.
“I wish he’d the slam the door on it, or open the door to it, and I could live with it either way,” said House minority leader Scott Pelath, D-Michigan City. “I would just like to know.”
“He seems to be keeping the door open,” said IndyStar columnist Tim Swarens. “(But) I’ve been skeptical all along he will actually run. I think he’s got a lot working against him. I think we’ll get to May and he’ll say thanks, but no thanks.”
And as for Pence's out of state engagements?
“Behind the scenes these sorts of things are really important,” said Swarens. “Money is already starting to flow to Jeb Bush. Scott Walker's going to be lining up a lot of money… Also talent. Key staff members are going to start to flow to campaigns and you need people who can run a national campaign."
Meantime, many are still waiting to see if Pence's decision will leave a hole in the race for governor in 2016.
Rep. Pelath was asked Friday if he had any interest in running for governor, but he said he did not.
Pelath said he hoped someone in his party would step up soon as the leading candidate to go up against Pence, or another candidate if Pence runs for President.
Gov. Pence has repeatedly said he would not make a decision until after this year's legislative session ends in late April.