17.05.2022

Mike Pence immediately fist-bumps crowd without mask after RNC speech

As figures showed more than 5.8m Americans had been infected with the coronavirus and that at least 180,000 had lost their lives, the vice president defended the Trump administration’s widely criticised response to the pandemic.

“Before the first case of coronavirus spread within the United States, President Trump took the unprecedented step of suspending all travel from China,” he said.

“That action saved an untold number of American lives. And bought us time to launch the greatest national mobilisation since World War II. President Trump marshalled the full resources of the federal government and directed us to forge seamless partnerships with governors across America in both parties.”

Kellyanne Conway speaks at the Republican National Convention

After completing his remarks, which appeared unlikely to stand up to the scrutiny of fact-checkers, Mr Pence was seen walking towards the audience gathered for his speech at Fort McHenry in Baltimore, and fist-bumping with well-wishers

He was also seen standing just a few feet from Donald Trump and Melania, the first lady, none of them wearing masks.

Mike Pence says Joe Biden does not understand ‘America is a nation of miracles’ as coronavirus deaths pass 180,000

The CDC recommends the use of face masks to prevent the spread of the virus when social distancing is not possible.

Mr Pence also found time to take aim at Democrats.

“As we speak, we’re developing a growing number of treatments, including convalescent plasma that are saving lives all across the country,” he said.

“Last week, Joe Biden said “no miracle is coming”. What Joe doesn’t seem to understand is that America is a nation of miracles and we’re on track to have the world’s first safe, effective coronavirus vaccine by the end of this year.”

Biden campaign calls Chinas treatment of Uighur Muslims genocide and pressures Trump to take action

The campaign of Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is labelling China’s treatment of the Uighurs “genocide” and calling on Donald Trump to take action.

The Chinese government long has been criticised by human rights groups and many US lawmakers over its treatment of the Uighur Muslims and other minority groups in its Xinjiang region.

“The unspeakable oppression that Uighurs and other ethnic minorities have suffered at the hands of China’s authoritarian government is genocide and Joe Biden stands against it in the strongest terms,” Biden campaign spokesman Andrew Bates told Axios.

“If the Trump administration does indeed choose to call this out for what it is, as Joe Biden already did, the pressing question is what will Donald Trump do to take action. He must also apologise for condoning this horrifying treatment of Uighurs,” the spokesman added.

The White House has yet to weigh in.

Mr Trump has been critical of Biejing’s handling of the coronavirus, often calling it the “China virus,” drawing allegations of racism from Democrats.

But during his term, he has been mostly complimentary of China and its president, Xi Jinping, as he sought a trade pact.

He got a mini-deal last year, but has since soured on that agreement.

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