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Wednesday 27 September 2023 Dublin: 15°C
# Republican Convention
Pence warns Americans 'won't be safe' if Joe Biden wins
Pence was the keynote speaker at the Republican convention last night in a parade of Trump acolytes.

election-2020-rnc Andrew Harnik / PA Images Andrew Harnik / PA Images / PA Images

US VICE PRESIDENT Mike Pence has told voters they “won’t be safe in Joe Biden’s America” and cast President Donald Trump as their protector against the “radical” left.

Pence was the keynote speaker at the Republican convention last night in a parade of Trump acolytes who sought to uplift the president as an economic virtuoso and champion of conservative and pro-life values, law enforcement and civil rights.

“Law and order is on the ballot,” Pence stressed on the third night of a convention overshadowed by violent unrest in Wisconsin and the approach of Hurricane Laura to the southern US coast.

He addressed the event from Fort McHenry in Baltimore, the site of an 1814 British bombardment that inspired the poem later turned into the US national anthem The Star-Spangled Banner.

With that backdrop, Pence made the patriotic case for Trump getting a second term instead of allowing the nation to be “fundamentally transformed” by a Biden administration he warned would take an uncharted path towards socialism and mob rule.

“The hard truth is, you won’t be safe in Joe Biden’s America,” said the 61-year-old Pence.

election-2020-rnc =03374570name= President Donald Trump, right, and first lady Melania Trump, center, arrive after Vice President Mike Pence, left, spoke on the third day of the Republican National Convention at Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine in Baltimore. =03374570name=

Pence’s address came amid a new flare-up of racial tensions in the United States, with protests spreading over the latest police shooting of an African-American man, Jacob Blake, who was shot in the back in Kenosha, Wisconsin. 

Trump has announced he is sending in additional federal forces to quell unrest in the Midwestern city, where two people were shot dead during anti-police protests Tuesday. A 17-year-old has been arrested on murder charges.

Addressing the latest unrest, Pence struck a tough tone.

“Let me be clear. The violence must stop whether in Minneapolis, Portland or Kenosha,” he said.

“We will have law and order on the streets of this country for every American.”

Touting Trump’s strong economic record before the Covid-19 pandemic struck and his ongoing efforts to revive it - Pence urged voters to ask themselves “who do you trust to rebuild this economy?”

A former governor of Indiana, the evangelical Christian Pence has taken on the role of calm counterweight to Trump’s constant drama.

As a traditional conservative, Pence seeks to reassure old-school Republicans while also praising the new generation of Trump loyalists – a balancing act that will likely play out within the party ahead of the presidential election in 2024.

Meanwhile, polls show almost two-thirds of Americans are unhappy with Trump’s pandemic response.

Biden holds a lead nationally, but a CNBC-Change Research poll released yesterday showed the race tightening across six swing states including Florida, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. 

Pence’s opponent, Democratic vice presidential pick Kamala Harris, will be attacking Trump on his coronavirus record at a speech Thursday in Washington, the same day Trump gives his main acceptance speech at the White House to close out the Republican convention.

Pence’s Baltimore address follows two days of appearances by Trump boosters, including First Lady Melania Trump, who on Tuesday defended the president as “an authentic person who loves this country.”

Trump, never far from the spotlight, flew with Melania to Baltimore to celebrate with the Pences after the vice president’s speech but did not formally address the gathering.

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