Former Vice President Mike Pence has pointed the finger directly at the White House for the nation's current economic crisis, specifically naming President Joe Biden's policies.
"The economic woes now upon us have been caused almost single-handedly by one person: the 46th president of the United States of America, Joe Biden," Pence said Monday in Chicago, according to ABC 7.
The news outlet reports that Pence's visit to the University Club of Chicago was the first of two stops in Illinois and comes less than a week before former President Donald Trump travels to the state for a rally.
It also comes as people are struggling with soaring prices at the gas pump and grocery store and as interest rates rise to their highest levels since 1994.
Pence spoke to the problems Americans are facing and avoided mentioning the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol building breach or Trump's potential future political aspirations.
"The truth is, the majority of Americans know that President Biden's economic policies have failed utterly and completely, and it is time for a change of direction for America," Pence said, according to the Chicago Tribune. "The Biden administration squandered American prosperity faster than any other administration in the history of our country.
"President Biden has offered plenty of excuses but few solutions."
Pence also said that gas prices were not rising because of Russian President Vladimir Putin's "unconscionable invasion" of Ukraine.
"Gas prices are rising because of Joe Biden's war on energy, and it has to stop and stop today," he said. "The runaway inflation is the predictable result of runaway spending. You cannot spend your way out of a problem that's caused by overspending."
According to the Tribune, Pence sprinkled his speech with Bible passages and also promoted family and faith as essential elements for achieving "the American dream."
With Pence possibly positioning himself as a presidential candidate in 2024, two-term Republican Gov. Jim Edgar said Pence faces one big challenge.
"He'll have a hard time getting a Republican nomination because of the Trump factor, which is unfortunate because he did the right thing [on Jan. 6]," the former governor told ABC 7. "I will say if he can get the nomination, what he did on Jan. 6 would enhance his chances in the fall."
Regardless of the evidence the Jan. 6 committee presents, alleging Trump's role in attempting to overturn the results of the 2020 election, Edgar told the news outlet he thinks Trump will run for president again and could win the GOP nomination.
"Anything that results in Donald Trump being president, I think is extremely dangerous for this country," he said.
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