Mike Pence passes on 2016 presidential bid

Washington (CNN)The prospective Republican presidential field got a bit smaller this week as the Indiana Republican Party announced Mike Pence plans to run for re-election as governor in 2016.

"Gov. Mike Pence is a conservative leader and dedicated public servant who always puts Indiana first," Indiana GOP Chairman Jeff Cardwell said in a statement. "We are excited the governor will formally announce his plans to seek re-election during our annual Spring Dinner, and we look forward to hearing his ideas for the future of our great state."
That pegs his announcement for mid-June, when Indiana Republicans gather for their annual fundraising dinner.
Pence sparked speculation over his political plans with a trip to Las Vegas for the spring meeting of the Republican Jewish Coalition last month, where he spoke to an audience of GOP financiers -- including mega-donor Sheldon Adelson -- alongside a number of announced or expected Republican presidential contenders.
    He also drew national attention after signing a controversial Indiana bill that would allow Indiana businesses to turn away lesbian and gay customers on the basis of religious beliefs. In response to backlash from both the LGBT and business communities, Pence moved to clarify the law, but still stood by it. It will go into effect shortly after the Indiana GOP's Spring Dinner and is certain to become a focal point in his re-election fight.