- The Washington Times - Friday, April 26, 2019

INDIANAPOLIS — Vice President Mike Pence on Friday told gun rights activists that as long as he and President Trump are in office, no one will be coming for their guns, urging them to stay in the fight to preserve freedom.

“I’ll make you a promise: under this president, and this vice president, no one is taking your guns,” Mr. Pence said at the annual “leadership forum” hosted by the National Rifle Association’s legislative-lobbying arm.

“The president and I stand with the NRA because, like all of you, we stand for freedom,” he said.

He said Mr. Trump, who was slated to address the crowd on Friday as well, has made good on his promises, talking up economic growth numbers and the president’s appointments to federal courts.

“When he finishes his term in office — six years from now,” Mr. Pence said, prompting applause, “I believe history will record no other president in all the modern era has done so much for so many in so little time.”

But he also said he needed attendees to “stay in the fight,” saying basic freedoms are being threatened by the “radical left” every day.

Mr. Pence, a former governor of Indiana, said there is a coming battle between freedom and socialism, which has become a major theme in Mr. Trump’s reelection campaign for 2020.

“The stakes have never been higher. The choice has never been clearer,” he said. “President Donald Trump and I are ready for the fight.”

He slammed recent comments from Vermont Sen. Bernard Sanders, a candidate for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, that people in prison should still have the right to vote while behind bars.

“The same people who want to restrict the right to keep and bear arms of law-abiding citizens believe the Boston Marathon [bomber] should be given the right to vote on death row,” he said. “I got news for you, Bernie: Not on our watch.”

He also alluded to former Vice President Joseph R. Biden’s recent entrance into the 2020 race.

“You know, I heard the other day that another vice president actually said that we’re in a battle for the soul of our nation — and for once I agree with him,” Mr. Pence said. “But not for the reason he thinks.”

“We are in a battle — we’re in a battle for the soul of America. … It’s a battle between liberty and tyranny,” he said. “This president has said before it’s a battle between independence and government control, and ultimately it’s a battle between freedom and socialism.”

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