Aug 11, 2020
Mike Pence Speech Transcript August 11: Cops for Trump Event
Vice President Mike Pence gave a speech at the Cops for Trump event in Arizona on August 11. He said: “Joe Biden would double down on the very policies that are leading to violence on the streets of America cities”. Read the transcript of his remarks here.
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Vice President Mike Pence: (00:00)
Well, hello, Arizona. To officer Justin Harris, to all the incredible men and women of the Arizona Police Association and all of their supporters, and especially their families, the governor Ducey, senator McSally, distinguished guests, my fellow Americans, it is great to be back in the Grand Canyon state with cops, for Trump. I appreciate you all coming out today. I’m very, very grateful and honored to receive that endorsement, but I got to be honest with you, I’m here for one reason and one reason only. And that is that Arizona and America need four more years of president Donald Trump in the White House. It really is great to be here with so many great friends and so many great friends of law enforcement. It’s also a real privilege for me to be here with a man I actually knew before he had the job he currently holds here in Arizona. He’s literally emerged as one of the best governors in America. He’s seen this economy grow. He’s seen your schools improve and he’s led this great state through trying times over the last many months, would you join me in thanking governor Doug Ducey for his leadership and his on wavering support of law enforcement across Arizona.
Vice President Mike Pence: (02:21)
Thank you, governor. And speaking of friends of mine, allow me to begin by bringing greetings from another friend of mine. When I told him last night that I was headed to the Grand Canyon state, to be honest with you, I thought he sounded just a little bit jealous. But let me bring greetings and gratitude for today’s endorsement from a man who has been a champion for law and order every day of this administration, I bring greetings from the 45th president of the United States of America, president Donald Trump. And on the president’s behalf, I really couldn’t be more proud to accept the Arizona Police Associations endorsement for four more years for this president in the White House. For the first day of this administration, president Trump has been keeping the promises that he made to the people of Arizona. We rebuild our military, we restore the arsenal of democracy and as the proud father of a United States Marine stationed right here in Arizona, I couldn’t be more proud that we’re finally given our soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines, and coast guard, the resources and the support that they need to defend this nation.
Vice President Mike Pence: (03:48)
I mean, this president has actually signed the largest increases in our national defense since the days of Ronald Reagan. And none of that would have been possible without the strong and principled support of an American who served this country for more than a quarter of a century in the United States Air Force. She made history there as the first female fighter pilot ever to fly in combat for her support for our troops, for her support for our national security, for her support for law enforcement here at home, we need to send Senator Martha McSally back to Washington, D.C. and I’m honored that she’s with us today. Thank you Martha.
Vice President Mike Pence: (04:39)
So we’ve rebuild our military. And before this pandemic struck under this president’s leadership, we revive the American economy after the slowest recovery, since the Great Depression. Under president Trump’s leadership, businesses large and small created more than 7 million jobs all across this nation. And we literally poured a foundation in this economy on which the economy of Arizona and America are already coming back. We also supported the rule of law and the right to life, and this president’s appointed more conservatives to our federal courts than any president in American history. So we’ve stood for the rule of law and we’ve stood without apology for the men and women who serve in the uniform of law enforcement at every level. With this president, this administration, that Senator, and that governor we’ll always back the blue
Vice President Mike Pence: (05:48)
And it’s in support of our allies in leadership across Arizona that’s helped to make the difference and we’ll have even more support after you reelect this president for four more years. We also need Arizona to send Tiffany Shedd and Brandon Martin to a new Republican majority in the United States, Congress. Tiffany and Brandon stand up and take a bow, thanks for stepping forward. So for all he’s done, and for all we have yet to do, we need four more years of president Donald Trump in the White House. The president spoke for almost every American, not long ago when he said, and I quote, “The vast majority of police officers in this country are selfless and courageous public servants.” And so you are. I heard a story on Air Force Two on the way here about just one such officer. It was a stabbing that happened here in Tucson, and the officer arrived on the scene and the victim pointed out the suspect.
Vice President Mike Pence: (07:08)
I heard the officer chased after the suspect, caught him as he was climbing a fence. Then the suspect turned, shot him and escape. The officer was wounded in the leg, but he kept his composure. He radioed in a description of the suspect and in just two days, law enforcement here in Tucson, tracked that suspect down and brought him to justice. And the officer went back to work as soon as he could, where he served the people of Tucson for more than 15 years would y’all join me in thanking officer Joby Dickinson for his courageous service that day and every day before in sense. Thank you, Joby. Great job.
Vice President Mike Pence: (08:07)
I also heard that we’re joined by another officer not long ago, was dispatched to a reported home invasion. The victim was literally tied up and helpless. The officer spotted the suspect’s vehicle drove after them. The suspects fired I’m told more than a hundred rounds over more than 10 miles of a chase. And at one point, the officer’s vehicle was disabled from the gunfire and another police officer picked him up and they kept after it. They kept going until they caught the suspects, arrested him and brought them to justice too. Would you join me in thanking Tucson’s own officer Troy Wallan, where are you Troy? Take a bow. What a great police officer. [inaudible 00:09:00] never quit.
Vice President Mike Pence: (09:01)
Never quit. Great job. Heroes like Officer [Dickinson 00:09:10] and Officer [Wallen 00:09:11] are why the overwhelming majority of the American people, back the Blue. We back you every day. When others run away from danger, police officers run straight into harm’s way. You count our lives as more important than your own. Put your lives on the line to protect someone that, in most cases, you never even met. And nowhere has that been truer or more poignant than over the last five months, here in Arizona and all across America. Our hearts and our prayers are with the more than 160000 Americans who have lost loved ones in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. And as we continue to marshal a whole of America response, as the governor often says, we all have a role to play, to do our part, to slow the spread, to protect the vulnerable and to save lives. And the people of Arizona are doing just that.
Vice President Mike Pence: (10:20)
Like last week, the Governor was in Washington to brief the President on the progress that you’ve made. We’re pleased to learn the positivity rates have dropped from 21% down to 12%, new cases have been steadily dropping for a month. That’s a tribute to your governor. It’s a tribute to the people of Arizona. We have a ways to go. All of us will continue to do our part. We’ll continue to slow the spread, flatten the curve, and save lives. But as I said, in these challenging times, none have done more to save American lives than our heroic healthcare workers, first responders, and the men and women of law enforcement, here in Arizona and across the country. It’s true.
Vice President Mike Pence: (11:12)
You step into harm’s way, often, without regard to your personal safety. You rendered assistance. You got people of the communities, all across this state, to the care that any one of us would want a family member to have. You stood in the gap in the midst of a pandemic. And for that, you have the thanks from the admiration of the American people. That’s why it’s amazing to think that in the wake of all that heroism, even the heroism of these recent days, that some of the leading politicians in the Democratic Party today, liken law enforcement officers to stormtroopers. Joe Biden said, not long ago, that well-armed police become in his words, the enemy when confronting lawlessness in our streets. Well, I want to assure you that your President, your Vice President and the overwhelming majority of the American people know that the men and women of law enforcement are the best people in this country. Law enforcement isn’t the problem. Law enforcement is the solution. That’s why President Trump and our entire administration back to blue, just like everybody gathered here today. And we’re going to stand with the men and women who serve on the thin blue line every single day. You are literally what separates order from chaos. Security is the foundation of our prosperity. So it’s been you, who’ve worn the uniform, who strapped on a sidearm, and kissed your families goodbye in the morning and walked down into that squad car or to walk that beat. It’s you who’ve made the freest and most prosperous nation in the history of the world possible. You make it possible for this nation to thrive and to prosper. And in these challenging times, to recover, and for every American to be able to live in the peace and security that every citizen in this nation, so richly deserves. So my fellow Americans, we are passing through a time of testing. But I’m here today because we will soon come to a time for choosing, and the choice in this election has never been clearer. And the stakes have never been higher.
Vice President Mike Pence: (13:50)
It really is a choice between freedom and opportunity versus socialism and decline. Joe Biden and the radical left offer a path starkly different from the path that President Trump set our nation on three-and-a-half years ago. Where we’ve cut taxes across the board for working families, businesses, and family farms and ranchers, Joe Biden would actually raise taxes by $4 trillion in the midst of a global pandemic. Where President Trump has cut more federal red tape than any president in American history, Joe Biden plans to bury our economy under an avalanche of red tape, stifling American jobs. And Joe Biden even has a $2 trillion plan to abolish fossil fuels. But we’re not going to let it happen. We’re going to stand for less taxes, less regulation, more American energy. That sounds like an Arizona agenda to me.
Vice President Mike Pence: (15:13)
And it’s just been about jobs, it’s been about values. President Trump, I’m proud to say, has not only stood for the rule of law, but he stood for the sanctity of human life, and Joe Biden… Where Joe Biden abandoned his historic opposition to taxpayer funding of abortion, he now supports using taxpayer dollars to fund abortion in this country. And he’s calling for historic increases to Planned Parenthood. And maybe worst of all, as we gather today at Cops for Trump, here in Arizona, Joe Biden believes that America in his words is quote “systemically racist.” And that law enforcement has, again I quote, “an implicit bias against minorities.” Where President Trump has supported the men and women of law enforcement every day, Joe Biden and the radical left say that we have to choose between supporting our police or supporting all the families of our communities. But I think the people of Arizona, no different, the American people know we don’t have to choose between supporting law enforcement and supporting our African-American neighbors. We can do both. We have done both and we’re going to keep doing both for four more years.
Vice President Mike Pence: (16:42)
The truth is as we stand here today, as [Justin 00:17:04] just said, in cities across the country, there are people who think they have to make that choice and are making the wrong choice. In cities across the country, you have elected officials that are stepping away from support for law enforcement, believing that they have to choose between supporting the men and women who protect the community and supporting families in the community. I just heard that Minneapolis has already begun dismantling their police department. In New York city, Mayor de Blasio actually cut the NYPD budget by a billion dollars. And on Monday of this week, the Seattle City Council actually approved millions of dollars in budget cuts to the police department, after watching rioters and anarchists take over part of their city for more than three weeks.
Vice President Mike Pence: (18:03)
… takeover part of their city for more than three weeks. And, when Joe Biden was asked if he would support cutting funding to law enforcement, he replied, yes, absolutely. Amid efforts to defund police across this country, cities are struggling with rising crime rates. History teaches that weakness arouses evil. And, as we see major city stepping away from support for law enforcement, buying into the agenda of the radical left, we’re also seeing crime rise in those very same cities across the nation. Just this past weekend alone, we had 40 people shot in Chicago. New York City reached its one thousandth victim and has had more shootings this year than in all of the last year already. In fact, in our nation’s Capitol, 21, people were shot at a block party just a few days ago. In city after city, we see the crime rate rising, the murder rate rising in cities that are stepping away from support for law enforcement. And, for the sake of those families, in every major city in this land, men and women of Arizona, this has got to stop.
Vice President Mike Pence: (19:38)
We must restore law and order to the streets of our communities for every American of every race, and creed, and color. And this we will do. We’re going to do it. Honestly, those heartbreaking numbers are just a preview of Joe Biden’s agenda. The truth is you won’t be safe in Joe Biden’s America. After years of plummeting crime rates under President Trump, Joe Biden would double down on the very policies that are leading to violence on the streets of America cities. When Democrats call for defunding the police, remember what’s at stake, law and order, safety, and the peace of mind that our families and our children have every right to expect in the greatest nation on earth.
Vice President Mike Pence: (20:51)
So, as they make their case on the airwaves of the nation next week, I want you to hear this directly from me, on behalf of the president of the United States and our entire administration, we’re not going to defund the police, not now, not ever. We’re going to back the blue. We’re going to back the blue with more resources and more support. We’re going to back the blue by making resources available to law enforcement agencies all across this country to improve public safety, enhance training and accountability. We’re going to continue to expand funding like the funding that we provided for 4,000 new police officers through the COPS Program. And, as the president announced a month ago, by making resources available to departments across the country. We’re just going to help law enforcement officers get better trained to do their job in the most difficult circumstances.
Vice President Mike Pence: (22:13)
All of you gathered here know, especially those of you wearing a uniform, no one hates bad cops more than good cops. Now, there’s no excuse for what happened to George Floyd in Minneapolis. And justice will be served. But there’s also no excuse for rioting, and looting, and the arson that took place in the days that followed. Burning churches is not protest. Tearing down statues is not free speech. Throwing bottles and rocks at police officers here in Tucson isn’t peaceful protests. And those who do such things are not peaceful protesters. They’re criminals. And they will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
Vice President Mike Pence: (23:16)
While Joe Biden and the Democratic party continue to coddle the radical left, from our nation’s capital, to Portland, to cities across the country, President Trump is taking action to restore law and order. Just last month at the White House, the president announced what we call Operation Legend. It’s a surge of federal law enforcement officers into our hardest hit cities, cities that are experiencing enormous surges in violence and crime due to misgovernance and also due to the drive for defunding by the radical left. The operation is actually named after a little boy, a four year old African American boy named Legend Taliferro.
Vice President Mike Pence: (24:12)
Last month, little Legend was gunned down while sleeping in his home in Kansas city, Missouri. That four year old boy had spent the night before building a pillow fort with his dad. And, when he was shot, he was sleeping in the fort he and his dad had made. When police arrived on the scene, they rushed him to the hospital, but it was too late. Little Legend died of his injuries.
Vice President Mike Pence: (24:57)
With the launch of Operation Legend, I promise you little Legend will not have died in vain. The operation in his name is, as we speak big, bringing peace and security to cities all across the country. When his mom heard about the operation, and the surge of forces, and even heard of some of the criticism, his mom said, “If you are against that, maybe you need to reevaluate.” And she was right.
Vice President Mike Pence: (25:40)
But it’s stories like Legend that break the heart of the American people. But I also know that it’s the little ones like Legend, and like his family, the community in which he lived that drew those of you who wear the uniform of law enforcement into service. Because law enforcement isn’t an occupation so much as it’s a calling. I’ve never talked to a police officer that didn’t speak of it just that way. It’s a selfless calling to count others as more important than yourself. It’s a calling to protect the vulnerable, to stay on the watch. And it’s a calling that is born more of the heart than of the mind. And every police officer I’ve ever spoken to about why they serve made it clear, you serve because you love this country. You love your city.
Vice President Mike Pence: (27:02)
… country. You love your city. You love this state. And I want you to know Arizona and America Love you right back.
Vice President Mike Pence: (27:20)
As President Trump said, we may come from different backgrounds, but we’re united in our desire to ensure peace and the dignity of all Americans and you in law enforcement are the instrument of securing that for every American, every background, every walk of life. So for all you do on behalf of a grateful nation, I promise you: we’ll always have your back. This President, this Vice President, this administration will always back the blue. Because we’re all grateful. We’re grateful for what you do. You know what, it seems like sometimes I reflect on the fact that, all of my heroes wear uniforms and not on the Gridiron and not on the hard court, but wear the uniform of law enforcement. Wear the uniform of our armed forces. When I was a little boy, we used to drive up to Chicago to my grandmother’s house. And I got to see my uncle dress out every day we were there. When he’d come walking out of his bedroom, wearing that Chicago Police Department uniform, that shiny leather belt, sidearm, badge on his chest, made me proud.
Vice President Mike Pence: (29:04)
So I also want to just say we’re grateful each and every one of you that wear the uniform. But would you tell your families we’re just as grateful for them because I’ll never know what it is to wear that uniform, but I know what it is to be a member of a family that does. And we are grateful for your families, for the love and support they give you as you serve.
Vice President Mike Pence: (29:41)
So on behalf of your President, all the grateful American people, I’m here to say thanks. I know you have the gratitude and respect of this nation. You see it when you’re walking a beat, when you stop in and get a cup of coffee, when you bump people in the drug store, at the grocery store, at church, or synagogue, or your place of worship. People show you that respect.
Vice President Mike Pence: (30:10)
I know you feel it every day, despite what happens in the public debate or on the airwaves of television. I know here on the streets of Tucson, all across Arizona, you feel that gratitude, but I also hope you feel one other thing. I hope as you go out the door in the morning, those of you that wear the uniform, I hope you know that I believe with all my heart that you are carried into service every day by the prayers of millions of people who pray for you, who pray for your safety, and pray for your service every single day.
Vice President Mike Pence: (30:59)
It’s true. This is a nation of faith. I hear people speak about it every day, everywhere I go and I don’t ever want you to doubt that as you put on that uniform, you do not go alone. You go with the confidence of your President, the confidence of your Governor, confidence of the people that you serve. And I believe you go with the grace of God. The men and women of law enforcement bear a great responsibility, it has always been true. The Bible reminds us that there’s no authority except that which God has established and each one of you who protect and serve, are as the good book says servants for good, who do not bear the sword in vain.
Vice President Mike Pence: (31:48)
People in this country understand that timeless truth, they understand the risks that you take and are grateful for what you do. So on their behalf and on our behalf, thank you for your service and thank you all for coming out today. It’s wonderful to be back in Arizona. Thank you for coming out to support President Trump. Thank you for coming out to support Senator Martha McSally. And I just know seeing the enthusiasm in this room, if all of us do all we need to do between now and election day here in Arizona and across America, we’re going to win a great victory for the people of this country. We’re going to reelect that Senator to a Republican majority. We’re going to elect a new Republican majority in the house of representatives with Tiffany Shed and Brandon Martin. And with President Donald Trump in the White House for four more years, we’ll see our way through these challenging times. We’ll make Arizona more prosperous than ever before. We’ll make Arizona safer than ever before. And to borrow a phrase, we’ll make America great again, again.
Vice President Mike Pence: (33:07)
Thank you all very much. God bless the men and women of law enforcement and God bless America.