Vice President Mike Pence on Wednesday called the United States a “nation of miracles” and said Americans would see the development of a successful coronavirus vaccine before the end of the year.
In his headliner address on the third night of the Republican National Convention, Pence hailed the Trump administration’s management of the pandemic and repeatedly sought to cast Joe Biden, the Democratic presidential nominee, as a pessimist who could not realize the country’s potential.
“Last week, Joe Biden said that no miracle is coming,” Pence told supporters in his speech at the historic Fort McHenry in Baltimore.
“Well, what Joe doesn’t seem to understand is that America is a nation of miracles,” he said. “And I’m proud to report that we’re on track to have the world’s first safe, effective coronavirus vaccine by the end of this year.”
Pence’s timeline comes as President Donald Trump continues to push the Food and Drug Administration to speed up its approval of a Covid-19 vaccine — a pressure campaign that public health experts warn could have dangerous consequences.
But Pence, who has overseen the federal government’s coronavirus response, appeared intent on Wednesday on emphasizing only the positive when it came to the pandemic.
“After all the sacrifice in this year like no other, all the hardship, we’re finding our way forward again,” he said.
Pence mourned for “all the families who have lost loved ones“ to Covid-19 and praised the “heroic teachers and faculty and staff” who are helping the administration “open up America again.”
He also appealed to Americans not on the front lines of the pandemic, saying that they would also “have a role to play” and a “choice to make” as the country works to claw its way out of a cratered economy and active public health crisis.
“On November 3, you need to ask yourself: Who do you trust to rebuild this economy?” Pence said. “A career politician who presided over the slowest economic recovery since the Great Depression? Or a proven leader who created the greatest economy in the world?”