Pence defends Trump, goes after media at ABQ town hall

Donald Trump’s running mate has a reputation for being more subdued in public than the Republican presidential candidate, but that doesn’t mean they attract different crowds. A case in point came during Mike Pence’s town hall in Albuquerque Tuesday afternoon when a person from the audience during the question and answer session asked the Republican […]

Pence defends Trump, goes after media at ABQ town hall

Donald Trump’s running mate has a reputation for being more subdued in public than the Republican presidential candidate, but that doesn’t mean they attract different crowds.

A case in point came during Mike Pence’s town hall in Albuquerque Tuesday afternoon when a person from the audience during the question and answer session asked the Republican vice presidential nominee why establishment Republicans were publicly jumping ship from the Trump ticket.

He brought up Gov. Susana Martinez, who has publicly feuded with Trump and refused to endorse him, as an example.

“She is one of many Republicans that are deserting,” the man said. “Why are there an unprecedented amount of people who are deserting you and Mr. Trump in your own party?”

Pence replied by saying that Martinez is “a very dear friend of mine.”

“She’s a great governor,” Pence said, as audience members gathered at Sandia Resort Casino started booing. “She’s done a great job for New Mexico.”

Martinez is at a political event in Aspen, Colorado.

Speaking over the boos, Pence then lamented how the media wasn’t paying equal attention to Democrats who aren’t fond of their nominee Hillary Clinton.

At another point, when the Indiana governor was extolling the virtues of Trump “building those skyscrapers,” attendees interrupted him by chanting, “build a wall.” It’s a reference to Trump’s signature campaign promise to build a wall between the United States and Mexico and make Mexico pay for it.

“Let me tell you, that will get done,” Pence responded.

Trump supporters
Donald Trump and Mike Pence supporters Noel Behne and Max Glover of Sandoval County

One woman who identified herself as Brenda warned to Pence that a new civil war would ensue if either Trump or Clinton wins the election this fall. If Clinton wins “and she takes your guns away, there is going to be a civil war,” Brenda reasoned. But if Trump wins, “there is also going to be a war because Obama is going to pull martial law.”

For a response, Pence gave it his best college try.

“Brenda, Hillary is not going to be elected president of the United States,” he said, gaining cheers.

Audience members also periodically and sporadically chanted “lock her up,” referring to Clinton. One man wearing a “Hillary for Prison 2016” shirt worked up the crowd with similar chants before Pence showed up.

“That was the best part about the Cleveland [Republican] convention,” state Rep. Alonzo Baldonado, R-Los Lunas, said in response as he emceed the event.

Pence kept cool and calm throughout the question and answer segment as well as his opening speech.

During his speech, Pence presented a counter-narrative to recent negative headlines against Trump.

Republican vice presidential candidate Mike Pence and U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce at a town hall in Albuquerque.
Republican vice presidential candidate Mike Pence and U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce at a town hall in Albuquerque.

“Let me say the challenge of this election, it’s kind of a two on one,” Pence said, referring to negative coverage of Trump. “I have to turn on the TV with a stick these days.”

Pence blamed the media for focusing on Trump’s statement purporting to encourage “Second Amendment people” to take action against Clinton if she wins the presidency.

“The media was focusing on semantics,” he said.

He pointed to Clinton’s much maligned “what difference does it make” statement she made in reference to whether the 2012 attack in Benghazi was caused by terrorism or protesters as much worse than anything Trump said.

“Anybody who said that, anybody who did that is unfit to serve as Commander in Chief of the United States of America,” Pence said.

Pence also pointed to recently-released emails showing how “wealthy foreign donors” had access to the State Department during Clinton’s term as Secretary of State. The emails were released by Wikileaks and many think they were stolen by pro-Russia hackers.

His jibe came days after The New York Times revealed cash payments between one of Trump’s aides, Paul Manafort, and Ukraine’s former president and Vladimir Putin-ally Viktor Yanukovitch.

Toward the end of his remarks, Pence urged attendees to “go tell the story” themselves.

“I want you to go out and talk to your neighbors and friends,” he said. “At the end of the day, everything that is said and done in the media doesn’t matter a hell of a beans until you stop and talk.”

We're ad free

That means that we rely on support from readers like you. Help us keep reporting on the most important New Mexico Stories by donating today.

Related

Effort to challenge six laws enacted last year comes to an end

Effort to challenge six laws enacted last year comes to an end

Earlier this month, the New Mexico Supreme Court denied and dismissed the effort to challenge six laws enacted in 2023. The New Mexico Supreme…
Governor to call special session for public safety legislation this summer

Governor to call special session for public safety legislation this summer

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced that she will call the Legislature into a special session this summer to address public safety legislation that did…
Emily’s List endorses seven candidates for Legislature

Emily’s List endorses seven candidates for Legislature

Emily’s List, a nonprofit that supports women candidates and reproductive rights, endorsed seven incumbents facing general election opponents in New Mexico legislative elections. All…
Two PFAS chemicals designated hazardous substances under Superfund law

Two PFAS chemicals designated hazardous substances under Superfund law

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released a final rule Friday to designate two types of PFAS chemicals as hazardous substances. Those two chemicals are perfluorooctanoic…
BLM finalizes controversial public lands rule

BLM finalizes controversial public lands rule

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management finalized its controversial public lands rule on Thursday. This rule is controversial because it allows for conservation leasing…
Haaland signs order protecting sacred lands near Placitas

Haaland signs order protecting sacred lands near Placitas

Interior Secretary Deb Haaland signed an order on Thursday to withdraw more than 4,200 acres of land in Sandoval County near Placitas from mineral…
Amid new graduation requirements, what do high schoolers want to learn?

Amid new graduation requirements, what do high schoolers want to learn?

By Margaret O’Hara, The Santa Fe New Mexican The main things that bring Brayan Chavez to school every day: Seeing, talking to and engaging with…
Special ed teachers hope lawmakers OK pay raises, admin changes

Special ed teachers hope lawmakers OK pay raises, admin changes

By Margaret O’Hara, The Santa Fe New Mexican Brittany Behenna Griffith has a laundry list of adjectives to describe the ideal special education teacher:…
Lawmakers must find consensus on competing education spending plans

Lawmakers must find consensus on competing education spending plans

By Margaret O’Hara, The Santa Fe New Mexican A challenging task awaits New Mexico lawmakers in the next 30 days: Reconciling three very different…
Health workers fear it’s profits before protection as CDC revisits airborne transmission

Health workers fear it’s profits before protection as CDC revisits airborne transmission

Amy Maxmen, KFF Health News Four years after hospitals in New York City overflowed with covid-19 patients, emergency physician Sonya Stokes remains shaken by…
Lujan Grisham, Biden admin announce $10 million in federal funds for tribes, pueblos

Lujan Grisham, Biden admin announce $10 million in federal funds for tribes, pueblos

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced Friday $10 million in funding from the federal American Rescue Plan Act was awarded to six tribal nations and…
Proposal to curb executive powers moves to House Judiciary

Proposal to curb executive powers moves to House Judiciary

The House Government, Elections and Indian Affairs Committee discussed a potential constitutional amendment that seeks to limit the governor’s executive powers. The committee approved…
Abortion fund provider rebrands and holds open house

Abortion fund provider rebrands and holds open house

An abortion fund provider unveiled a rebrand and offered an open house in Las Cruces to celebrate the organization’s new name, mission and values. …
Stansbury introduces judicial ethics bill on U.S. Supreme Court steps

Stansbury introduces judicial ethics bill on U.S. Supreme Court steps

U.S. Rep. Melanie Stansbury announced a bill on Thursday that would, if enacted, establish judicial ethics to the U.S. Supreme Court. The Judicial Ethics…
Politics and abortion, how much will it matter?

Politics and abortion, how much will it matter?

At the national level, abortion is still a high-stakes issue with both major presidential candidates talking about it in their campaigns, but it may…
Abortion fund provider rebrands and holds open house

Abortion fund provider rebrands and holds open house

An abortion fund provider unveiled a rebrand and offered an open house in Las Cruces to celebrate the organization’s new name, mission and values. …
Politics and abortion, how much will it matter?

Politics and abortion, how much will it matter?

At the national level, abortion is still a high-stakes issue with both major presidential candidates talking about it in their campaigns, but it may…
How the AZ Supreme Court decision on abortion impacts New Mexico

How the AZ Supreme Court decision on abortion impacts New Mexico

The Arizona Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday that an 1864 abortion ban is enforceable, throwing another state bordering New Mexico into the situation of…
Effort to challenge six laws enacted last year comes to an end

Effort to challenge six laws enacted last year comes to an end

Earlier this month, the New Mexico Supreme Court denied and dismissed the effort to challenge six laws enacted in 2023. The New Mexico Supreme…
Vasquez calls out Republicans for ‘inaction’ on border policy

Vasquez calls out Republicans for ‘inaction’ on border policy

U.S. Rep. Gabriel “Gabe” Vasquez, a Democrat who represents the state’s 2nd Congressional District along the U.S.-Mexico border, cosponsored a resolution on Monday calling…
Politics and abortion, how much will it matter?

Politics and abortion, how much will it matter?

At the national level, abortion is still a high-stakes issue with both major presidential candidates talking about it in their campaigns, but it may…
Two PFAS chemicals designated hazardous substances under Superfund law

Two PFAS chemicals designated hazardous substances under Superfund law

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released a final rule Friday to designate two types of PFAS chemicals as hazardous substances. Those two chemicals are perfluorooctanoic…
New Mexico Voices for Children has new leadership

New Mexico Voices for Children has new leadership

New Mexico Voices for Children, an organization that focuses on tax policy and how it impacts children in poverty, has new leadership. Gabrielle Uballez…
Abortion fund provider rebrands and holds open house

Abortion fund provider rebrands and holds open house

An abortion fund provider unveiled a rebrand and offered an open house in Las Cruces to celebrate the organization’s new name, mission and values. …

GET INVOLVED

© 2023 New Mexico Political Report