- The Washington Times - Friday, July 16, 2021

Back in Iowa for the first time since the 2020 election, former Vice President Mike Pence told voters in the first-in-the-nation caucus state the “Trump-Pence” administration showed what can be accomplished when you fight for conservative principles.

Mr. Pence is among several Republicans flirting with presidential bids in 2024 and waiting to see whether former President Donald Trump runs again.

“When I think of the past four years, I think what we demonstrated under the leadership of President Donald Trump and with great partners on Capitol Hill like [Rep. Randy Feenstra] was what you can accomplish if you stand firm and don’t back down from conservative principles,” Mr. Pence said at the Feenstra Family picnic in Sioux City. “It’s incredible.”

Mr. Pence‘s political future has been the subject of endless speculation since he defied Mr. Trump’s wishes by certifying President Biden’s victory in the 2020 election.

Mr. Pence and most constitutional scholars say his hands were tied and he did the right thing as the vice president presiding over the Electoral College vote count.

Mr. Trump and his most fervent backers, however, say he could have done more to challenge the election results and that Mr. Trump will pick a different running mate if runs for president in 2024.

Speaking in Iowa on Friday, Mr. Pence said it was “the greatest honor of my life” to serve as Mr. Trump’s vice president.  

He said the “Trump-Pence” administration “rebuilt” the military, strengthened border security and revived the economy by rolling back regulations and cutting taxes.

“We made a difference,” he said. “We made America greater than ever before.”

Mr. Pence said their administration held China accountable for trade abuses, stood for the sanctity of life, put conservatives on the Supreme Court, and stood shoulder to shoulder with Israel.

President Biden has made a mess of it all, he lamented.

“In just 177 days, the Biden administration has unleashed a tidal wave of left-wing policies that threaten to wipe out all the progress we made for a safer and more prosperous American,” Mr. Pence said. “Democrats have moved so fast to advance their liberal agenda sometimes I feel like the left hand doesn’t know what the far left hand is doing.”

Mr. Pence said the Biden-Harris administration is pushing for runaway spending and higher taxes. He said they created the “worst border crisis America has ever seen,” and he said they are seeking to ease abortion restrictions, reduce military spending and pack the courts with liberal judges.

“But perhaps the most troubling development of the past few months has been the Biden administration’s wholehearted embrace of the radical left’s all-encompassing assault on American culture and values,” he said, accusing the administration of promoting critical race theory in schools.

“Under the Biden administration, Patriotic education has been replaced with political indoctrination.”

Mr. Pence said the first step in beating back the big-government agenda of the “radical left” is to “turn America back to God.”

“When people forget God, the government grows,” he said. “So first and foremost if we are going to turn this country around, we need to turn America back to God.”

Mr. Pence was also slated to appear later in the day at the Family Leadership Summit in Des Moines. The event is hosted by the Family Leader, a Christian-conservative group.

Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Gov. Kristi Noem of South Dakota, who also are potential 2024 contenders, also are among the scheduled speakers at the Family Leadership Summit.

• Seth McLaughlin can be reached at smclaughlin@washingtontimes.com.

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