ORLANDO — Republican governors are quietly nervous about what to expect from President-elect Trump even as they bask in the glow of his victory and the opportunities it affords.

Gathered for a meeting of the Republican Governors Association, the governors talked about the frustration of dealing with President Obama and the excitement about the conservative reforms they can achieve with a friendly administration in the White House.

But beneath the surface, anxiety about what lies ahead was palpable.

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson let it slip when he said during a symposium about GOP leadership in the states that he was looking for reassurance from Trump on key issues like trade, immigration and foreign policy that could impact his state.

“We’re dependent upon global trade,” Hutchinson said in subsequent interview. “We don’t want the nervousness abroad about the role that the United States will play. We need to have that clarity.”

“There’s some things that need to be disrupted,” Hutchinson added. “I just hope that he picks and chooses wisely.”

Many governors opposed Trump during the primary and kept their distance in the race against Hillary Clinton. With some exceptions, such as support for repealing Obamacare, his populism clashes with their conservatism.

They worry about what that means for their states.

Trump plans to renegotiate free trade agreements and national security alliances. On both fronts, the president-elect is vowing to walk away from existing commitments if he can’t get the deal he wants. He also is planning a major immigration overhaul.

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All of these promised changes have the governors concerned for the economies of their states. Many are home to multinational corporations, or the domestic headquarters of foreign companies, and are dependent on global trade and smooth international relations.

Perhaps that’s why, in discussions here, the governors almost treated Trump as an afterthought and pointed to the influential role they expect Vice President-elect Mike Pence to play in the new administration.

The governors said that the focus on Pence was a function of their relationship with him. The vice president-elect is a former congressman and the governor of Indiana; the governors they know him as colleague.

But it’s clear that they’re relying on Pence, who like them is a Republican in the mold of Ronald Reagan, to steer the Trump administration in a familiar, conservative direction.

“Mike has a track record of political service, and 12 years in the Congress,” Utah Gov. Gary Herbert said in an interview with “Examining Politics,” the Washington Examiner’s weekly podcast. “We also like the fact that he’s been consistently conservative, he’s not been all over the map on different issues.”

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“There’s comfort in knowing what you’re getting,” Herbert said.

With Trump’s election, the Republican Party is under new management, and the governors are transitioning. Some of the results of the change will be familiar — and welcome.

Trump supports the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act. During the two-day RGA conference, the governors talked more about the opportunity to junk Obama’s signature healthcare law than any other policy goal Trump’s victory makes possible.

The governors also are anticipating a major tax overhaul that includes a tax cut; the repeal of the Dodd Frank financial regulatory bill enacted under Obama and the elimination of onerous energy and environmental regulations the president championed.

These moves are in line with traditional Republicanism, and the governors say it will boost economic growth and job creation, and make it easier for them to act independently of Washington to do what’s best for their states.

“I’m excited about what’s possible,” Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey said, in an interview for “Examining Politics.”

There also is some trepidation.

For the first time in nearly a decade, Republican governors will be defined as much by Trump as they are by their own leadership, as is typical when a party controls the levers of power in Washington.

Throughout Obama’s administration, the GOP governors and their agendas in the states were the counterpoint to Democratic dominance in the nation’s capital.

The dynamic didn’t just fuel the two midterm victories that elevated many of them to office in the first place, it raised their profiles as leaders of the opposition and potential future presidents.

The governors are now taking a backseat to Trump. They will be expected to publicly support his agenda and downplay disagreements.

That’s what South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, among Trump’s biggest Republican critics before the election, did this week. Haley had previously criticized Trump’s sharp rhetoric, especially as directed toward ethnic groups.

She reaffirmed her position during a news conference with some fellow governors, saying: “I still believe that the power of your words matter.” But Haley quickly pivoted and praised the new party boss.

“What we’ve seen from President-elect Trump so far is, he’s talking about everyone — he’s talking about inclusion, he’s talking about lifting up everyone,” the governor said.

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