Wednesday's speech was one of Mrs. Pence's most high-profile political moments since her husband was elected

By Adam Carlson
August 26, 2020 11:56 PM
Advertisement
Karen Pence speaking Wednesday night at the Republican National Convention
| Credit: RNC2020

Second Lady Karen Pence spoke Wednesday at the Republican National Convention and, in keeping with the night's theme on "heroes," she spoke about the military families and service-members she had gotten to know while in office.

It was one of the night's more personal addresses and stood in contrast to other speakers at this week's RNC who have attacked the Democratic Party in near-apocalyptic terms. (Later Wednesday, Vice President Mike Pence said that the November election would decide the existential fate of America itself.)

But Mrs. Pence spoke on a smaller scale, sharing stories of businesswomen and military spouses and veterans she'd met.

She said she drew from experience, citing her family's history.

"This evening, we look at heroes in our land," she said. "As second lady of the United States for the past there and half years, I have had the honor of meeting many heroes across this great country."

"The Pences are a military family," she continued. "Our son, Michael, serves in the U.S. Marines and our son-in-law, Henry, serves in the U.S. Navy. And one of my key initiatives is to elevate and encourage military spouses. These men and women, like our daughter, Charlotte, and our daughter-in-law, Sarah, are the home-front heroes."

"I have been privileged to hear so many stories of selfless support, volunteer spirit and great contributions to the Armed Forces and our communities," Mrs. Pence said. "Military spouses may experience frequent moves, job changes, periods of being a single parent while their loved one is deployed — all while exhibiting pride, strength, and determination and being a part of something bigger than themselves."

From left: Second Lady Karen Pence and Vice President Mike Pence
| Credit: SAUL LOEB/Getty Images

The second lady talked about the value of art therapy in helping veterans coping with post-traumatic stress disorder and she praised those who worked with the Veterans Crisis Line.

"In these difficult times, we've all seen so many examples of everyday Americans reaching out a hand to those in need, those who in humility have considered others more important than themselves," she said.

"One-hundred years ago ... women secured the right to vote," she went on to say. "So let's vote, America. Let's honor our heroes."

Wednesday's speech was one of Mrs. Pence's most high-profile political moments since her husband was elected.

In an interview last year with the Associated Press, she talked about her changing public image, campaigning for President Donald Trump and some of her causes as second lady.

She did not discuss a controversy over her working for an anti-LGBTQ Christian school — which circulated again on Wednesday night.

“I just feel like I want to do my part,” she said then.