What Mike Pence's Life Is Like Since The White House

One of the key names to emerge from the presidency of Donald Trump, the 45th President of the United States, is that of Mike Pence, Trump's vice president. Back in 2016, when Trump tapped the Indiana lawyer and politician to be his running mate, Pence had already made something of a name for himself via his actions of Governor of Indiana, positioning himself as an ardent social conservative. As NPR News reported at the time, his appeal to socially conservative voters was a key factor in Trump naming him as his running mate.

During his four years as vice president, Pence chaired the National Space Council and the president's Coronavirus Task Force, among other accomplishments. In January 2021, as the Trump presidency wound down, Pence, in his constitutionally-mandated role as president pro tempore of the Senate, certified the results of the 2020 election, giving victory to his boss' opponent, Joe Biden.

Since his years as vice president, Pence has been attempting to make a name for himself as a contender for the Republican Party's 2024 nomination for President. He's also making money on the lecture circuit.

He was homeless (sort of) for a while

On January 20, 2021, Joseph Biden was inaugurated as president, and his running mate, Kamala Harris, became vice president. Among other things, that meant that Pence and his wife, Karen, had to vacate Number One Observatory Circle, the home of the VP and his (or her) family. Prior to that, he'd lived at the Indiana Governor's Mansion, which means that, for about a decade, Pence and his family had lived in government housing and had not owned or rented a home, as The Daily Mail reports. Those factors put the VP in the awkward position of being effectively homeless, and it was reported that the Pences had been "couch surfing" at the homes of friends and other Indiana politicians, as Insider reported.

Of course, it bears noting that at no point were Mr. and Mrs. Pence homeless in the traditional sense of the word; they did not live on the streets and were never in any danger of having to do so. At the time, he was estimated to have a net worth of $1 million, and could easily have afforded to purchase or rent a comfortable home in just about any place in the U.S. At the time, insiders speculated that he had been holding off on purchasing a home or signing a rental contract because he was mapping out his political future and wasn't sure if it involved Indiana or Washington.

He finally bought a house

In May 2021, Mike Pence bought a house. Specifically, as Barrons reported at the time, Pence purchased a $1.93 million home in the Indianapolis suburb of Carmel. The seven-bedroom, seven-and-a-half bathroom residence sits on five acres with a dock and a pond, according to a local real estate listing from the time. Other amenities reportedly include an indoor basketball court, a wood-paneled library, and a custom wet bar and game room. The Pences paid slightly more than the asking price to acquire the property, originally listed at $1.8 million. The transaction closed on May 25.

Buying the home fulfilled a promise that Mr. Pence had made to his wife. A few months earlier, he told a crowd in Columbus, Indiana, that he intended to return to the Hoosier State. "I've already promised Karen we'll be moving back to Indiana come this summer. There's no place like home," he said at the time.

He's making a decent living

When it comes to presidential politics, with few exceptions, the men who make it to the rank of president and/or vice president have been wealthy since long before they took office. That was not true of Mike Pence, however. Before becoming VP, he'd been Governor of Indiana, and before that, he'd worked a series of jobs, such as an attorney in private practice (per ABA Journal), that, though hardly low-paying, did not result in vast wealth. Now, however, those days are gone, according to Vanity Fair. Pence has taken a page from the books of Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and other marquis politicians and started making money through public speaking. "He's making real money for the first time in his life ... six-figure speeches," an unidentified friend said.

At least two websites of public-speaking management groups, including Worldwide Speakers Group and Speaker Booking Agency, include brief biographies of the former vice president and offer opportunities to check for his availability and/or book him, although it bears noting that neither site has made his fee publicly available online.

He may or may not be running for president in 2024

Though the 2024 presidential election is still nearly three years away, powerful players interested in the Republican Party's nomination are already positioning themselves for consideration as the date gets nearer. Mike Pence may or may not be among the names of men and women interested in the job; as of this writing, he hasn't said anything one way or the other. But those who know Pence say he's ambitious and he's got his eyes on the White House. "You should not underestimate Pence — he has broad support among the big donors and in Congress, beyond just evangelicals. He's incredibly ambitious. He's a person who sees himself as the president," said a friend, via Vanity Fair.

Republican voters may also be on board with a President Pence, too. A January 2021 Politico/Morning Consult poll shows that, among Republican voters who want someone other than Donald Trump to get the GOP nomination in 2024, 26% support the former VP. By comparison, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is getting 20% support in the same poll.

He remains in the shadow of Donald Trump

If Pence does run for the GOP nomination in 2024, he'll have to deal with Donald Trump in one way or another. So far, Trump hasn't given any indication as to whether or not he'll run for election again in 2024, but if he does, any Republican contender — Pence, DeSantis, or otherwise — will have to compete against him.

If Trump doesn't run, there's still the matter that Pence's name is toxic to at least some voters in the Republican Party due to his certifying of the 2020 election in Biden's favor. Raymond Harre, vice chair of the GOP in Scott County, Iowa, didn't mince words in June 2021 when he told Politico, "I don't imagine he'd have a whole lot of support. There are some Trump supporters who think he's the Antichrist." Similarly, veteran pollster Michael Cohen (not to be confused with Trump's incarcerated former attorney) told Vanity Fair that Pence's political career is, for all intents and purposes, already over. "There's no way he's going to be the next president," Cohen said.