Vice President Mike Pence holds outdoor rally in Reading

Written by on October 19, 2020

 Vice President Mike Pence holds outdoor rally in Reading

By Anthony Orozco, WITF

October 19, 2020

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Vice President Mike Pence speaks at a campaign rally held at the Reading Regional Airport, Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020, in Reading, Pa. Michael Perez / AP Photo

Vice President Mike Pence made a campaign stop in Berks County Saturday afternoon in an outdoor event held at the Reading Regional Airport.

Several hundred people attended, as Pence hit many familiar beats of his campaign trail; boasting the country’s pre-pandemic economy, and committing support to the military and law enforcement.

“We rebuilt our military. We revived the economy. We stood for law and order, our liberties and life.” Pence said. “In a word, we made America great again.”

Pence also praised Trump’s response to the coronavirus pandemic that has killed more than 210,000 Americans. He heralded the potential of a publicly available vaccine for COVID-19 and noted a new plan to give the vaccine to older people for free.

“[The] president announced yesterday a plan with CVS and Walgreens to deliver and administer vaccines to our seniors in nursing homes and across the nation for free as soon as they’re available,” Pence said.

The federal approval of a possible vaccine is not imminent, so a timetable for potential distribution is unknown.

Pence also hailed Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett and called on voters to support Republican congressmen Lloyd Smucker, of Lancaster County, and Dan Meuser, who represents parts of Berks County.

The vice president characterized their races as critical in changing power dynamics in the House.

“Right after you reelect President Donald Trump, we need Pennsylvania to send Congressman Lloyd Smucker and Congressman Dan Mueser to a new Republican majority in the House of Representatives that retires Nancy Pelosi once and for all,” Pence said.

Smucker is facing Democrat Sarah Hammond and Meuser will face Gary Wegman in the general election.

Pence characterized former vice president and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and running mate Sen. Kamala Harris as “a Trojan Horse radical left,” who want to put the U.S. on an “inexorable path to socialism and decline.”

The event was the first time any candidate on the presidential ticket for either party has visited the county this election season. Trump and Pence won Berks County by 10 percentage points in 2016.

Pennsylvania has been a fiercely competitive battleground state for the candidates and has been in the spotlight in regards to mail-in voting, which has been heavily scrutinized by Trump.

Pence is slated to make another visit to the midstate on Monday. This time, he is scheduled to campaign at Capitol City Airport in Fairview Township, York County.

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