Mike Pence photo

Remarks Accepting Donald Trump's Nomination as the Republican Nominee for Vice President in New York City

July 16, 2016

On behalf of my family here and looking on, would you join me in thanking Donald Trump, Melania, and his entire family for the sacrifices that they are making to make America great again? [applause]

And I thank Donald Trump, for the confidence you've placed in us, and I accept your invitation to run and serve as vice president of the United States of America. [applause]

You know, I come to this moment deeply humbled, but with a grateful heart. Grateful to God for his amazing grace. Grateful to my wonderful wife, Karen, and our three incredible kids, Michael, Charlotte, and Audrey, and grateful to this builder, this fighter, this patriotic American who has set aside a legendary career in business to build a stronger America, Donald J. Trump. [applause]

And let me say, having had the privilege to spend time with this man and his family out of the limelight, I know what all of America will soon know even better: These are good people. Donald Trump is a good man, and he will make a great president of the United States of America. [applause]

Donald Trump understands the frustrations and the hopes of the American people like no leader since Ronald Reagan. The American people are tired. We're tired of being told. We're tired of being told that this is as good as it gets. We're tired of having politicians in both parties in Washington, D.C., tell us we'll get to those problems tomorrow.

And as Ronald Reagan said, we're tired of being told that a little intellectual elite in a far distant capital can plan our lives better for us than we can plan them for ourselves. Donald Trump gets it. And he understands the American people. [applause]

I truly am deeply humbled to be at his side today. And when I got this call last Wednesday, I could only think of that ancient question: Who am I, oh, Lord, and who is my family that you have brought us this far?

So let me try and answer that question for a few minutes. Now, people who know me well know I'm a pretty basic guy. I'm a Christian, a conservative, and a Republican, in that order. [applause]

And while I'm currently -- I currently have the privilege of serving the state that I love, I'm really -- I'm really just a small-town boy who grew up in southern Indiana with a big family and a cornfield in the backyard. Like Donald Trump, my grandfather immigrated to this country, and in many ways, I grew up with a front row seat to the American dream.

I watched my mom and dad build everything that matters: A family, a business, and a good name. The heroes of my youth were John F. Kennedy and the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. I actually started in politics in the other party. But when I came of age, I was inspired by the ideals and the eloquence of our 40th president, and I became a Republican.

The most important thing in my life was when 31 years ago I married the girl of my dreams, Karen Pence, who will make a great second lady of the United States of America. [applause]

And while this office is an extraordinary office to which to aspire, the highest role I will ever play is D-A-D. And I'm a proud father of a college student, a graduate turned writer, and a United States Marine. [applause]

You know, my career, I ran for Congress before the Republican revolution, led by Newt Gingrich in 1994. I wasn't successful. By the time I got elected to Washington, D.C., sometimes I felt like I was elected after it was over. From almost my first day in Congress, I found myself battling the big spenders in both political parties, whether opposing No Child Left Behind, the prescription entitlement, or the Wall Street bailout, I fought every single day for taxpayers and fiscal responsibility when I was a member of the Congress of the United States. [applause]

And after the Republicans lost the Congress in 2006, I was actually unanimously elected to serve in leadership, and we fought back against the Nancy Pelosi Congress. We opposed Obamacare. We opposed their tax increases. We opposed their cap-and-trade. And I was part of the team that won the Congress back from Democrat control in 2010. [applause]

And all that happened before I went back home again to Indiana. But I want to say I answered this call for two reasons, first, because I know from firsthand experience that strong Republican leadership can bring about real change, just like we've seen in the Hoosier state.  And, secondly, because Hillary Clinton must never become president of the United States of America. [applause]

Now, on the first point, I know what I'm talking about. You know, in Indiana, we prove every day you can build a growing economy on balanced budgets, low taxes, even while making record investments in education, roads, and health care. We like to say Indiana is a state that works.  And it does. [applause]

Indiana works because Republican principles work every time you put them into practice. Today, we have a $2 billion surplus and the highest credit rating in the nation. And since I became governor, Hoosier businesses large and small have created nearly 150,000 net new jobs. And we have more Hoosiers going to work than ever before in the 200-year history of the great state of Indiana. That's what Republican leadership gets ya. [applause]

And let me say from my heart, that's what the no-nonsense leadership of Donald J. Trump will bring to Washington, D.C. [applause]

But elections are about choices. Elections are about choices. And I also joined this ticket because the choice could not be more clear. The stakes could not be higher. Americans can choose a leader who will fight to make America safe and prosperous again and bring real change, or we can elect someone who literally personifies the failed establishment in Washington, D.C.

Seven-and-a-half years of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton's policies have weakened America's place in the world and stifled our nation's economy. Terrorist attacks at home and abroad, grim and heartbreaking scenes from France just a few short days ago, the attempted coup in Turkey all attest to a world spinning apart.

History teaches us that weakness arouses evil. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama's foreign policy of leading from behind, moving red lines, feigning resets with a resurgent Russia and the rise of ISIS is a testament to this truth of history, and we must bring a change to America's stand in the world. [applause]

We cannot have four more years apologizing to our enemies and abandoning our friends. America needs to be strong for the world to be safe. On the world stage, Donald Trump will lead from strength. He will rebuild the arsenal of democracy, stand with our allies, and hunt down and destroy the enemies of our freedom. [applause]

And at home -- and at home, the choice is just as clear. Where Donald Trump wants to cut taxes, Hillary Clinton plans to raise taxes, on working families, small businesses, and family farms. Where Donald Trump is committed to repeal Obamacare, lock, stock and barrel... [applause]... Hillary Clinton looks at Obamacare as a good start and wants to take Bernie Sanders' path down to single-payer socialized medicine. Where Donald Trump supports an all-of-the-above strategy and will end the war on coal, Hillary Clinton actually promised an energy plan that would close American coal mines and put coal miners out of work.

Where Donald Trump wants to build a wall and temporarily suspend immigration from countries compromised by terrorism, Hillary Clinton plans to ignore the Supreme Court, re-impose executive amnesty, and would increase -- increase -- our refugee program by more than 500 percent.

And where Donald Trump will appoint justices like the late Antonin Scalia, who will uphold our Constitution, Hillary Clinton will appoint Supreme Court justices who will legislate from the bench, abandon the sanctity of life, and rewrite our Second Amendment.

To every American who shares our convictions, I say to you, join us. For the sake of our security, for the sake of our prosperity, for the sake of a Supreme Court that will never turn its back on our God-given liberties, let's come together as a party and a people and a movement to make America great again. And that day begins when Donald Trump becomes the 45th president of the United States of America. [applause]

Thank you for the honor. Thank you for your support. And God bless the United States of America. [applause]

[music "All Right Now" by Bad Company]

Mike Pence, Remarks Accepting Donald Trump's Nomination as the Republican Nominee for Vice President in New York City Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/317888

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