Former Vice President Mike Pence says he isn’t sure that he and former President Donald Trump will ever see “eye to eye” on the Capitol riot but that he would “always be proud of what we accomplished for the American people over the last four years.”
Pence, speaking at a Republican dinner on Thursday in New Hampshire, gave his most extensive comments to date on the events of Jan. 6.
“As I said that day, Jan. 6 was a dark day in the history of the United States Capitol. But thanks to the swift action of the Capitol Police and federal law enforcement, violence was quelled. The Capitol was secured,” Pence said.
“And that same day, we reconvened the Congress and did our duty under the Constitution and the laws of the United States,” Pence continued.
“You know, President Trump and I have spoken many times since we left office. And I don’t know if we’ll ever see eye to eye on that day.”
Pence praised Trump several times during his nearly 35-minute speech at the Hillsborough County Republican Committee’s annual dinner in Manchester.
His comments come as he considers a potential 2024 White House run and as many Republicans continue to support the former president.
“I will not allow Democrats or their allies in the media to use one tragic day to discredit the aspirations of millions of Americans. Or allow Democrats or their allies in the media to distract our attention from a new administration intent on dividing our country to advance their radical agenda,” Pence said.
“My fellow Republicans, for our country, for our future, for our children and our grandchildren, we must move forward, united.”
He accused Biden of campaigning as a moderate but becoming the most liberal president since Franklin D. Roosevelt.
He said the administration forced through Congress “a COVID bill to fund massive expansion of the welfare state” and was pushing a “so-called infrastructure bill” that was really a “thinly disguised climate change bill” funded with military cuts and historic tax increases.
“I just say enough is enough,” he said, adding that “we’re going to stand strong for freedom.”
Pence lauded law enforcement, saying: “Black lives are not endangered by police. Black lives are saved by police every day.”
He also pushed back against critical race theory.
“America is not a racist country,” he said, prompting one of several standing ovations and cheers during his speech.
“It is past time for America to discard the left-wing myth of systemic racism,” Pence said. “I commend state legislators and governors across the country for banning critical race theory from our schools.”
Since leaving office in January, Pence has been doing work with the Heritage Foundation and Young America’s Foundation. His team said he plans more trips, including stops in Texas, California and Michigan.
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