Republican Vice Presidential nominee Mike Pence stumped in Purcellville today as the party works to keep Virginia in play as a battleground state headed into November’s election.
The Indiana governor used the stop attended by about 1,000 supporters gathered at the Barbara Hodel Center at Patrick Henry College to introduce himself, build support for Donald Trump’s campaign priorities, and to attack Democrat Hillary Clinton.
It was the Republican ticket’s eighth campaign stop in Virginia—and second in Loudoun—since the party’s nominating convention in July. Trump held a rally in Ashburn on Aug. 2. Pence also met with state Republican leaders in Richmond on Saturday before coming to Purcellville. Recent polls show Trump about 10 points behind Clinton in the commonwealth.
Pence, who thanked the crowd for coming out to see a “B-list” Republican celebrity on a Saturday afternoon, joined with other speakers at the rally in saying that American voters have tired of political correctness and need the fresh approach Trump brings. “Donald Trump just gets it,” Pence said. “He says it like it is from his heart and from his mind.”
He hit Clinton on her email scandal, her handling of the fatal Benghazi attack, accusations that the Clinton Foundation offered political favors for donors, and plans for new costly governmental programs.
Even as a small band of protesters outside on the college grounds accused Trump of being a divisive candidate whose policies would hurt women and immigrants, Pence said it was part of the “Clinton playbook”—not the Republican’s campaign—to promote divisions. “There is more for us in America that unites us than will ever divide us,” Pence said.
Pence said the Republicans’ priorities would be to build a stronger military and defeat ISIS, repeal the Affordable Care Act in its entirety, and promote, rather than curtail, the use of the nation’s coal resources. “The war on coal will come to a crushing halt,” he said.