First printed in Fort Wayne Journal Gazette and then reprinted on Mike Pence's Facebook page:
We stand on the precipice of a national election that will define America’s place in the world, determine the federal government’s place in our lives and determine national policy on life and marriage.As we witnessed in the GOP primary races for president, most conservatives had difficulty getting excited about any of the candidates.
Many conservatives still wish they had a better choice.But not liking the choice is not the same as having no choice. In this election, there is a clear choice for the American people. I choose John McCain.McCain brings a lifetime of experience in national security, government reform and support for traditional values that makes him uniquely suited to be the GOP standard bearer in 2008.I am also supporting McCain for president because I believe he provides a clear contrast to the alternatives and because he possesses the character and experience to lead our nation during these troubled times.
Despite our differences on some key issues, I have gotten to know Sen. McCain over the past few years, and I have come to admire him on many policy positions and on a personal level.Traveling with him to Iraq in 2007, I saw the respect he commands among our soldiers and among the military leaders of our allies. I watched as he placed the cause of victory in Iraq ahead of his political ambitions and stood by our troops, fearlessly supporting their progress on the surge. McCain has the military experience to lead our nation at a time of war and the long vision to understand the necessity of victory.Working with him to fight runaway federal spending under Republican control, I saw McCain stand for fiscal discipline and reform. Before the “Bridge to Nowhere” was a household word, McCain was fighting pork-barrel spending in Washington, leading by example and fighting for earmark reform. When a handful of conservatives tried to stop the passage of a massive Medicare expansion in 2003, it was McCain alone who stood with us in the Senate, speaking out against the prescription drug entitlement and the crushing weight of debt it was placing on our children and grandchildren.
I believe his devotion to a strong national defense and limited government are in harmony with conservative values.C.S. Lewis said, “courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point.” When McCain knew he was right, on war and spending, I have seen courage. And where I believed him to be wrong, he still showed the courage of his convictions.
These difficult times call for a leader with McCain’s unique qualities. Abraham Lincoln said, “only events can make a president.” When I think of the unknowable perils that await our nation in 21st century – the rise of Communist China, the threat of Islamic extremism, the crushing weight of public debt and the attack on the family – I am persuaded that the times demand a leader of courage and experience for such a time as this.