U.S. Vice President Mike Pence on Wednesday cast the re-election of President Donald Trump as critical to preserving America's safety and economic viability, while cautioning Democrat Joe Biden would set the country on a path to socialism and decline.
"The hard truth is you won't be safe in Joe Biden's America." U.S. Vice President Mike Pence headlined the third night of the Republican National Convention on Wednesday (August 26), delivering a law and order speech amid widening unrest over the police shooting of a Black man in Wisconsin.
Earlier on Wednesday, Trump said he would send federal law enforcement to the city of Kenosha in agreement with the state's governor.
And throughout the evening, Pence and other Republicans sought to characterize the upcoming election between Trump and Biden as a choice between law-and-order, and lawlessness.
"The violence must stop - whether in Minneapolis, Portland or Kenosha.
Too many heroes have died defending our freedom to see Americans strike each other down.
We will have law and order on the streets of this country for every American of every race and creed and color." Opinion polls show Trump's combative style has alienated some female voters.
And White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany as well as Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway, who recently announced she would be leaving the White House, sought to present a softer view of the president and highlight Trump's work to elevate women in the administration.
"A woman in a leadership role still can seem novel.
Not so for President Trump.
For decades, he has elevated women to senior positions in business and in government.
He confides in and consults us, respects our opinions, and insists that we are on equal footing with the men." Democrats have characterized Trump's law-and-order focus as a diversion from what they say is the president's mishandling of the health crisis, which has killed more than 178,000 Americans.
But Vice President Pence sought to recenter the conversation around the economy, casting the millions of jobs lost to the health crisis as a temporary setback.
"Last week, Joe Biden said 'no miracle is coming.'
What Joe doesn't seem to understand is that America is a nation of miracles." President Trump, who will deliver his own speech at the final night of the RNC on Thursday, made an unscheduled appearance to support Pence.
Trump has been criticized for minimizing the threat of the health crisis -- and after Pence's speech the two greeted a throng of crowded audience members, many of them unmasked.