Former Vice President Mike Pence blasted President Joe Biden's Philadelphia speech, telling a conservative women's group that the "partisan campaign rally" vilified "MAGA Republicans" and “pro-life Americans."
"Did you see that speech last week?" Pence asked the anti-abortion group Concerned Women for America Wednesday, according to The Hill. "President Biden held a partisan campaign rally at Independence Hall in Philadelphia, flanked by uniformed United States Marines, and revealed what's truly at stake in the next election."
The former vice president is reported to be weighing a presidential campaign in 2024, in which he might face off against his former boss, former President Donald Trump.
Pence was particularly needled by Biden's comments that Republicans who oppose abortion are moving the country "backwards." Since the Supreme Court's overturning of Roe v. Wade in June, Pence has called on states to pass their own legislation restricting abortion.
"The president made it clear that he views pro-life Americans as enemies of democracy," the former vice president said. "In fact, he said that anyone who refuses to bend the knee to his extremist left-wing ideology represents 'an extremism that threatens the very foundations of our republic.'
"Never before in the history of our nation has a president stood before the American people and accused millions of his own countrymen of being a 'threat to this country,'" Pence continued. "To top it off, President Biden had the audacity to claim, 'I'm asking our nation to come together, to unite.'"
Conservative commentators and Republican lawmakers have denounced Biden's Independence Hall speech, in which the president cautioned that former President Donald Trump and his allies are a threat to democracy.
In particular, the president spoke of the criticism "MAGA Republicans" have lobbed at the FBI in the wake of the agency's raid on Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate, as well as their distrust of election results and spread of conspiracy theories.
Biden walked back his remarks the day after the speech, saying he does not think all Trump supporters are a threat to democracy, but many Republicans have still slammed the president for delivering what they perceived as a divisive political message.
Criticism from Pence was especially interesting, given his association with the former president.
Trump often disparages Democrats and portrays them as socialists, saying at a rally after the Philadelphia speech that Biden was an "enemy of the state."
The former vice president himself faced danger when protesters breached the Capitol building on Jan. 6, 2021, chanting, "Hang Mike Pence," following months of Trump's claiming widespread voter fraud affected the outcome of the 2020 election. His former boss also claimed Pence could single-handedly overturn the results.
Pence has frequently spoken about that day, saying he disagreed with Trump and believed it was his duty to certify the election.
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