Paul Bedard of the Washington Examiner explores the vice president’s role in the 2020 campaign.

Vice President Mike Pence has reached a rare stage in his drive to marshal the right for President Trump’s 2020 reelection, becoming the administration’s Mr. Conservative.

Heritage Foundation President Kay Coles James put it this way: “There’s an instinctual trust that conservatives have with Vice President Pence that’s been built through nearly two decades of working together.”

Pence has been on a mission to strengthen relations with conservative and evangelical groups and now he is also helping them to do their mission.

Heritage told Secrets Sunday that Pence will be the keynote speaker at its first-ever black tie gala at its annual President’s Club meeting on October 22. …

… Pence has attended several conservative events over the summer, including one-time “Never Trumper” Erick Erickson’s huge Resurgent Gathering. At the time, Erickson told us, “I think the vice president coming to this event sends a big signal that the Trump team takes nothing for granted in the run up to 2020 and also that they understand mobilization of conservatives will be a key part of their strategy.”

Last week Pence gave a key trade speech at Heritage where he praised the group that has supplied the administration policy papers and staffers.

“I have to be honest with you, Heritage Foundation will always feel like home,” he said. “I mean, the truth is, Heritage Foundation has been a bulwark. It’s been a bulwark of freedom and a leading defender of the Constitution now for almost a half a century,” he added.

James paid back the compliment, telling Secrets, “He has stood shoulder-to-shoulder with us in the biggest battles.