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Supporters Hope to Coax Pence Into White House Bid

Former Rep. Jim Ryun (R-Kan.) launched the conservative group America’s President Committee on Monday with the sole focus of encouraging Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) to run for president next year.

Ryun will lead the new group with former Reagan administration official Ralph Benko. It debuted its website Monday and will collect signatures from conservative supporters and tea party activists over the next several weeks for a “declaration encouraging Mr. Pence to run for President,” according to a statement.

“Throughout his distinguished career, Mike Pence has demonstrated the ability to enthusiastically advance the cause of conservatives and constitutional, limited government and for that reason I am encouraging him to get in the race,” Ryun said in the release. 

A spokesman for Pence could not immediately be reached for comment about the new group, but the Indiana lawmaker did say shortly after the midterm elections in November that he would make a decision about whether to run for president early in 2011. Pence is also said to be mulling a gubernatorial run in his home state, but so far he has not indicated his intentions for the upcoming election cycle. 

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