Pence During Wheeling Visit: ‘Promises Kept’
VP Pence Touts President's Kept Promises
WHEELING — Vice President Mike Pence told supporters Thursday there are more job openings in the nation today “than there are Americans looking for jobs,” and the story of America “is the second-greatest story ever told.”
President Donald Trump considers West Virginia “the backbone of the nation,” according to Pence. He said coal production in the Mountain State jumped more than 17 percent in 2017, and he attributed this to the administration’s efforts to roll back climate change policy and reject “the job-killing Paris Climate Accord. If you haven’t noticed — Trump digs coal,” Pence said. “Under this administration, the war on coal is over.”
Pence addressed a largely partisan crowd of about 400 supporters attending a panel discussion, taking place in the Glessner Auditorium at Oglebay Park’s Wilson Lodge.
The event was organized by America First Policies.
Pence was introduced by West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice, who said Trump “truly loves West Virginia,” and that Pence does, too.
“I’ve seen them in action,” Justice said. “I’ve seen their hearts, and what they are all about. This is a great man.”
Pence touted the “promises made, promises kept” by the Trump Administration during its first 18 months in office, and told West Virginians the administration’s efforts would be strengthened further if they elected a conservative candidate to the U.S. Senate this year.
Pence spoke of the administration’s promise to “rebuild the U.S. arsenal of democracy” and invest in national defense.
This year’s increase in defense spending was the largest since the Reagan administration, according to Pence.
The administration has kept its promise “to enforce laws,” he said. Pence praised all the law enforcement present for Thursday’s event, and asked those present to stand to respect them.
He said Trump also is continuing to push to “protect our borders.” This year he signed the largest increase in border security spending in 10 years, according to Pence.
“We’ve doubled down payment, and we’ve already started to build that wall,” he told the supporters.
Trump also promised to appoint conservatives to the U.S. Supreme Court, and has, Pence said. He spoke of the successful appointment last year of Justice Neil Gorsuch, and the recent appointment of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. Kavanaugh’s appointment is waiting Congressional approval.
He called Kavanaugh a man of integrity “who deserves the support of every member of the Senate.”
Pence said liberals have tried to thwart the efforts of the Trump administration, and they have not been able to count on the votes of U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, a moderate Democrat from West Virginia.
“The people of West Virginia deserve to know,” Pence said. “Everything I just described, everything we have tried to accomplish has been done in the face of unprecedented obstruction by Democrats in Congress. Frankly, we’ve done it all despite the consistent opposition of (Senate President) Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), and Joe Manchin. … Joe Manchin doesn’t represent the values the people of West Virginia cherish most…. The truth is, Sen. Manchin hasn’t supported the president’s agenda. And I think West Virginians deserve better.”
Manchin’s campaign did not immediately return messages seeking comment Thursday evening.
His Republican opponent in November, State Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, was present at Wednesday’s event with the vice president and provided remarks prior to Pence’s speech.
Following the event, Pence appeared at a private fundraiser for Morrisey at Wheeling Park’s White Palace. The private event was sponsored by Robert E. Murray, president and CEO of Murray Energy.