Pence's 'Great American Comeback Tour' Begins in Pennsylvania


Vice President Mike Pence on Friday undertook the Trump administration’s mission to connect with voters amid the unrest seizing the nation.

Pence traveled to Pennsylvania, an important swing state that will be bitterly contested.

He began with a discussion with faith and community leaders and later visited a manufacturing plant.

Pence stressed the same points that President Donald Trump has made about bringing Americans together after a challenging few months.

The trip to Pennsylvania is the first stop in what has been described as the “Great American Comeback Tour.” Trump’s campaign declared that “the great American comeback has begun” after a jobs report last week revealed strong numbers in the country’s economic turnaround.

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But Pence didn’t just focus on the economy. He also listened to concerns raised by the recent death George Floyd in Minneapolis after a police officer knelt on Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes, speaking in Pittsburgh about finding opportunities to address what he described as historic inequities.

“I’m tired. I am mentally, physically and spiritually tired,” said Ross Owens, a local pastor who said he grew up in one of the poorest neighborhoods of Pittsburgh.

“I’m tired that people still do not acknowledge that systemic racism is real, and they ignore the billions of voices that exists, and they say, ‘No, that’s not true,’ because of the comfort of their own bubble.”

“I can tell you that I have three sons who have been stopped collectively at least a dozen times by the police, even some black police in the city of Pittsburgh,” said Cheryl Allen, a former judge on the Superior Court of Pennsylvania.

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“It’s a mindset that if you are a young black man driving a nice car, you must either be a drug dealer or you stole the car.”

She said her children were never charged and noted that when police learned who owned the car, that tended to be “the end of the story.”

“But that’s not the case for most people,” Allen said.

Pence told the group that “this is just about the best hour I’ve had in a long time.”

In the afternoon, Pence delivered a speech at Oberg Industries in Sarver, a town about 30 miles northeast of Pittsburgh.

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Pence noted that May’s gain of 2.5 million jobs was a record and that economists had been expecting companies to slash 8 million jobs.

“We’re very confident that it’s just the beginning, and this American comeback has just begun,” Pence said.

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