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U.S. Rep. Mike Pence sounded an awful lot like a 2012 Presidential Candidate the other day when he spoke to the Detroit Economic Club and laid out a plan of sorts to restore American into 2012 and beyond.

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Story from Freep:

The ink is barely dry on the Nov. 2 election results, but 2012’s presidential politics started Monday in Birmingham when U.S. Rep. Mike Pence, an Indiana Republican, spoke to members of the Detroit Economic Club and revealed a wide-ranging proposal for reviving prosperity in America.

It’s not just about major shifts in tax, fiscal, regulatory and energy policy, said Pence, who was first elected in 2000. His plan for restoring success also requires a return to traditional family values and organized religion.

“Our present crisis isn’t merely economic, but moral in nature,” Pence said. “It’s the realization that people in positions of authority have walked away from the timeless truths of honesty and integrity.”

Pence’s is one of about a dozen names that have surfaced as possible presidential candidates in 2012. He is the chairman of the Republican Conference Committee, the third ranking position among the GOP in Congress.

A staunch social conservative, Pence was the winner of a presidential straw poll at the Values Voter summit in September, followed by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, former U.S. Rep. Newt Gingrich and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.

Pence didn’t discourage the presidential speculation during his speech, saying he was humbled by the support he has gotten so far, but wouldn’t make a commitment on his next political venture.

“We’re determined to take the next several months to pray and seek the advice from counsel,” he said. He called his plan “START,” for its focus on sound fiscal policy, tax relief and reform, accessing America’s energy, regulatory reform and accelerating trade agreements.

He opposed the government rescue of General Motors and Chrysler.

“The American people know that had we given GM room for an orderly restructuring, the company and taxpayers would be better off,” he said. “We’ve slipped into this era of bailouts and that’s got to stop.”

Of course, everything any of these potential candidates do is seen as a possible hint about their decision to run for President. The speculation about Pence has gone on for a while and I’d say he’s likely to run at this point.

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Nate Ashworth is the Founder and Senior Editor of Election Central. He's been blogging elections and politics for almost a decade. He started covering the 2008 Presidential Election which turned into a full-time political blog in 2012 and 2016.

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