NEW YORK — Donald Trump said Saturday that Indiana Gov. Mike Pence will be "my partner" in a fight to change the United States by rebuilding the manufacturing sector at home and fighting terrorism from abroad.
"We are in a rigged, rigged system," Trump said in unveiling his new running mate during a Saturday morning event in New York City.
Pence -- who spoke after more than 25 minutes of remarks from Trump in which he talked more about himself than his new running mate -- described himself as "a Christian, a conservative, and a Republican -- in that order."
In thanking Trump for his appointment, Pence described the New York businessman as a "builder," a "fighter," and a "patriotic American" who will bring "no-nonsense leadership" to Washington, D.C.
The formal introduction came a day after the Republican candidate had planned to make it. The real estate mogul had postponed the announcement after the terrorist attack in Nice, France, and amid reports that he was wavering on the Pence pick.
Pushing back on those reports, Trump said Pence was "my first choice" for the running mate slot.
In discussing the Nice attack, Trump criticized the Obama administration and Hillary Clinton over their foreign policy, and vowed to protect the United States from terrorism through "strength" and "law and order."
Contrasting his new running mate with his Democratic election opponent, Trump said Pence is "a man of honor," while "Hillary Clinton is the embodiment of corruption."
There appeared to be about as many members of the media at the Saturday event as Trump supporters, who filled five rows of seats in a Hilton ballroom that was not expanded to its full size.
Shortly before the event started, Trump’s son Eric said that he’s been fortunate to get to know Pence in the last few weeks.
“He is a tremendous man!” Eric Trump tweeted. “Welcome to the team!”
Trump praised Pence two days before the start of the Republican convention in Cleveland. Saying that "we're going to have an incredible convention," the candidate also taunted "Never Trump" opponents who failed to change the voting rules in a bid to somehow derail his nomination.
"They got crushed," Trump said, adding that Republicans want an agenda that includes changing trade deals and building an anti-migration wall on the United States-Mexico border.
Trump tweeted his ultimate running mate decision Friday and announced the Saturday event, saying he was "pleased" to have the Indiana governor join him on the ticket.
After the joint appearance with Trump at the New York Hilton Midtown, Pence flies back for a "welcome home rally" in Zionsville, Ind. Trump is not scheduled to attend the Indiana event.
"We love Indiana, we love our country," Pence told reporters on Friday, "and I couldn't be more honored to have the opportunity to run with, and serve with the next president."
In an interview with Sean Hannity of Fox News, Pence downplayed or reversed past differences he has had with Trump.
The Indiana governor, who had criticized Trump for his proposed temporary ban on Muslim entry into the United States, told Fox News that "I am very supportive of Donald Trump's call to temporarily suspend immigration from countries where terrorists (have) influence."
Asked if Mexico would pay for a wall along the nation's southern border, Pence said: "Absolutely."
Trade? Pence said that while he supports free trade, he agrees with Trump that current agreements should be revisited.
"When we elect one of the best negotiators in the world as president of the United States, I'm open to renegotiating these trade agreements," Pence said.
In his remarks introducing Pence, Trump claimed he could bring back American jobs by re-working trade deals, and said that voters are "tired of a country that has horrible trade deals, that has no borders."
Republicans who have criticized Trump on these and other issues praised his selection as Pence.
Former GOP primary opponent Marco Rubio tweeted that Trump made a "great pick," and that Pence is "rock solid."
Former Florida governor Jeb Bush, who has refused to endorse Trump, tweeted that "Mike Pence is a good man," and "he will add value to the ticket."
Democrats mocked the pick, saying Pence's efforts to block abortion rights and promote the interests of the wealthy will turn off moderate voters. The campaign of Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton denounced Trump as "the most extreme VP pick in a generation."
Trump and Pence meet the press after a somewhat chaotic selection process that played out in recent days.
The candidate and his aides reacted angrily over news leaks Thursday about Pence's selection. In the meantime, Trump heard last-minute pleas from backers of the other two vice presidential finalists, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former House speaker Newt Gingrich.
Pence had support from top Trump aides who said he would win favor from the conservative Republican base, helping unite the party.
As late as Thursday — even as Pence sat in a New York hotel, having flown in from Indiana — Trump told Fox News that he had not yet made his "final, final decision."
Late Friday morning, however, Trump confirmed his choice on Twitter: “I am pleased to announce that I have chosen Governor Mike Pence as my Vice Presidential running mate," he tweeted.
Reporters on Saturday chuckled at one of the pre-event musical selections: The Rolling Stones' “You Can’t Always Get What You Want."