"In the midst of this global pandemic, just as our nation had begun to recover, we've seen violence and chaos in the streets of our major cities. President Trump and I will always support the right of Americans to peaceful protest, but rioting and looting is not peaceful protest," he exclaimed. "Tearing down statues is not free speech, and those who do so will be prosecuted to the fullest extent. Last week, Joe Biden didn't say one word about the violence and chaos engulfing cities across this country. So let me be clear. The violence must stop, whether in Minneapolis, Portland or Kenosha. Too many heroes have died defending our freedom to see Americans strike each other down. We will have law and order on the streets of this country for every American of every race and creed and color."
"President Trump and I know that the men and women that put on the uniform of law enforcement are the best of us," he continued. "Every day, when they walk out that door, they consider our lives more important than their own. The American people know, we don't have to choose between supporting law enforcement and standing with our African American neighbors to improve the quality of their lives, education, jobs and safety."
"And from the first days of this administration, we've done both," he noted. "And we will keep supporting law enforcement and keep supporting our African American and minority communities across this land for four more years."
Pence's comments come days after Jacob Blake, a 29-year-old Wisconsin man, was shot in the back multiple times by police in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Sunday. Graphic video footage of the incident shows Blake -- who was reportedly trying to break up a fight when police arrived on the scene -- walking away from officers, who have their weapons drawn. Blake survived but was left paralyzed. The incident has sparked multiple protests in Kenosha and cities around the U.S.
After addressing a number of other topics in his 40-minute speech, including COVID-19 measures and veterans, he concluded by saying, "We will make America great again -- again," which garnered opinions from many online.
PENCE: We need a new slogan TRUMP: How about Make America Great Again? PENCE: Again? TRUMP:...my God, you've done it
Meanwhile, just days after announcing her departure from the White House, Trump counselor Kellyanne Conway also spoke during the event, stating that Trump helped her, and women, shatter barriers in politics. Mentioning the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, Conway noted that even in 2020, "A woman in a leadership role still can seem novel."
"Not so for President Trump," she stated. "For decades, he has elevated women to senior positions in business and in government. He confides in and consults us, respects our opinions, and insists that we are on equal footing with the men."
Kellyanne Conway: “A woman in a leadership role can still seem novel. Not so for President Trump.” During her speech at the RNC she said, “President Trump helped me shatter a barrier in the world of politics by empowering me to manage his campaign to its successful conclusion.” pic.twitter.com/YkIpKZcjPa
White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany also shared how Trump supported her amid her mastectomy. Sharing how in 2018 she underwent a preventative double mastectomy, McEnany got a call from Trump checking up on her.
"Here was the leader of the free world, caring about my circumstance," she recalled. "Choosing to have a preventative mastectomy was the hardest decision I ever had to make...But supporting President Trump, who will protect my daughter and our children's future, was the easiest."
In her RNC address, Kayleigh McEnany tells the story of undergoing a preventative double mastectomy, and getting a call from President Trump checking up on her: "Here was the leader of the free world, caring about my circumstance." https://t.co/FyLIVYDKDnpic.twitter.com/c4M7Ot6RSX
Lara Trump, Eric Trump's wife, also touched on her humble upbringings to becoming a Trump and witnessing how "down to earth" the family was. She also quoted one of her teachers, who told her, "Believe none of what you hear, half of what you read and only what you’re there to witness firsthand," encouraging people to believe her comments on the Trump family's kindness.
Her comments were met with some criticism and humor.
Lara Trump says the thing that so impressed her upon meeting the Trump family was that “they were down to earth." pic.twitter.com/lgsWpeLmzw
Former NFL player Jack Brewer, and member of Black Voices for Trump, spoke out in support of Trump and how he's fed up with people calling the president racist. He also praised Trump for his criminal justice reform, including the 2018 passage of the First Step Act, which is a bipartisan initiative meant to cut sentences for low-level offenders and decrease the federal inmate population.
As he delivered his speech, though, many on Twitter noted that he was recently charged with insider trading by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
Jack Brewer, the Black former NFL player who spoke tonight at #RNC2020 in support of @realDonaldTrump, was charged with insider trading by U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission earlier this month.
A handful of celebrities had some things to say during the RNC. Bette Midler noted that she would not be watching, while former Saturday Night Live comedian Ana Gasteyer joked, "Out of respect for my future career, I am refraining from tweeting everything I’m thinking right now."