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Pence on Coronavirus at CPAC: 'Trump Has No Higher Priority' Than Health of Americans

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Vice President Mike Pence began a rousing speech at the Conservative CPAC conference in DC with a promise that the Trump administration was doing everything in its power to prepare for the effects of Coronavirus.  "We're all in this together," Pence said of the growing national concern about possible viral outbreak. Pence also decried "This is not the time for partisanship."

Pence assured attendees in the packed room at the Gaylord Convention Center in the National Harbor that the president was taking the Coronavirus threat to America very seriously. He strongly asserted that everything possible was being done to prevent an outbreak and prepare for treatment, if necessary. 

Often drowned out by cheers of "Four more years!" and "USA," Pence also spoke on the prosperous economy and increase in jobs, promising that a reelection of Trump would equate to greater economic growth. "In three short years, we've made America great again," he said to roaring applause. 

"How about the last few weeks alone?" Pence questioned. He then detailed the success of pro-life legislation under Trump, judicial appointments confirmed in the senate, and the president's successful trip to India. 

Pence also praised Trump's relationship with Israel and condemned liberal critics. "Under this president, if the world knows nothing else, the world knows this: America stands with Israel," he said. Pence also singled out the current Democratic front-runner, Bernie Sanders, for his position against the killing of Qasem Soleimani in January. Sanders had characterized the Iranian leader as a "government official," but Pence clapped back. "He was a terrorist," he said, nearly drowned out by cries of support from CPAC.

The Vice President received several standing ovations for his remarks on Wednesday morning, particularly at mention of federal justice appointments made by President Trump and comments about the president's pro-life policy positions. "I couldn't be more proud than to stand with a President who, without apology, stands for the sanctity of life," Pence said. "To every Republican, Independent, or Democrat, you have a home in today's Republican Party. President Donald Trump is the most pro-life president in American History."

Pence also included a call to action for Trump's supporters to turn up at the polls in November. "We've got to tell the truth about socialism," Pence said. "Socialism has failed everywhere it's been tried. In every era and on every continent. Freedom works," the Vice President said. 

Pence also criticized the Tuesday Democratic debate in Charleston, South Carolina, characterizing it as a "demolition derby," which could be overcome by a Trump monster truck. The Vice President minced no words in his criticism of policies suggested by Democrats that echoed socialist countries. "It was freedom, not socialism that ended slavery, won two world wars, and became a beacon for all mankind."

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