Vice President Pence defends massive campaign rallies: 'We're in an election year'

Vice President Mike Pence discusses the administration's response to the pandemic, potential Supreme Court nominees and law enforcement with ABC News Live's Linsey Davis.
14:26 | 09/24/20

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Transcript for Vice President Pence defends massive campaign rallies: 'We're in an election year'
The United States crossing that 200000. Milestone the death of justice Ginsburg in the fight to fill her scene plus a decision in the Rihanna Taylor case. We traveled here to Washington to speak with vice president parents of course also serves as the head of the corona virus task force it's about tourists started. With the pandemic. So mr. vice president as you well know yesterday was a grim milestone marking 200000. Americans passing from home. 119. No other country has suffered as many deaths as we have. We comfort Bonnie. Percent of the death toll yet only 4% of the world population as head of the corona virus task force I explain. So heartbreaking milestone. I really are our thoughts are with all of the families. That have lost loved ones in the course of this pandemic. But Lindsay and all my time working on a White House corona virus task force I'm absolutely convinced. Because of the decisive action president trump because the dedication. Of health officials in the state and federal level. My heart doctors and nurses and hospitals around the country because of the sacrifices the American people made. That we saved hundreds of thousands. Of lives that could have been lost in the midst of this pandemic. So bush area picture. None of how well you can see that but this is picture of the president trump treated you've probably seen it done rallied last night in Maine Pennsylvania. Thousands of people packed closely together hardly any social distancing very few mass. Has again ahead of the corona virus task force when your recommendation is for. People from Americans. To stay away from large gatherings how do you justify scenes like this. Well the recommendations of corona virus task force from early on have been state specific. We've given our very best counseled each individual state and many times to. Individual communities because the circumstances are are very different from one state. Head to another we've trusted governors in our states and most importantly we've trusted the American people. We'll certainly Americans have that right but as vice president and president you have the responsibility. To not put Americans into harm's way and you said just a minute ago. You were listening to the governors the governor of Nevada. Urged the president not to have that indoor rally there and he said that quotes the president was putting countless lives in danger. Well we're in an election year hand not surprisingly some politics is being played because in Nevada. That governor actually saw to it that the president was denied access to. Three or four different outdoor sites which would have done our first choice. But just one more on this visit any of doctor Redfield doctor found she was surgeon general Paul urging Americans. To Wear masks to stay away from large gatherings you had president comes last night making fun of Joseph Biden for social distancing and and wearing a mask. Are you concerned at all about the optics of potential your putting your political aspirations above the American lives and also the misinformation. So many issues of great importance in this election. President trump and are absolutely. Committed. To carry this choice all across. The country. And hand continue to give. The American people read. The best information put your own health person. Encouraging people who Wear masks and practice good hygiene social distancing. Worst possible is gonna continuously but. As I said that every state is different we're continuing to have to see. Real progress all across the country because the American people. Are demonstrating every single day that we can put the health of our. Families and our neighbors first we can be opening our economy up again and we can be having an election which I believe this. One of the most important elections and the life of this nation. So just a put up an and that when you see images like that you're not concerned about those kind of large scale gatherings. President trump and I trust the American people. Truly do believe in this. Freedom loving nation that the American people know how to look after themselves look after their families. And look after their neighbors and look after the future of this country as we as we moved ever closer to election. So Monday night when president trump was at a rally in Ohio he was talking into the crowd about for a buyer since had post. That affects virtually nobody went on to say the virus affects elderly people elderly people with heart conditions. Do you agree with this assessment by the president or do you believe that potentially this is another example of him as he says playing down the virus. Well I've I've never. She heard the president to. Downplayed the corona virus have heard him speak. Confidently about the ability of the people of this country are and officials at every level to meet this moment. Every step of the way that the president's direction we raise the infectious disease standards at every nursing home. In America we deployed all 8000 of our inspectors. To focus exclusively. On infectious disease compliance. And in almost every state. We saw governors that really put the health of seniors first there were states like New York that made decisions that. That sadly cost lives as they returned. Corona virus patients back to nursing. Homes but is you know 21%. Of those Americans are under 65. Who've lost their lives to corona virus and 200000. People lost their lives is that virtually nobody. I think that what. What the president's made clear is that. This is an infectious disease that has affected people all across the country and nearly seven million Americans. Tested positive for the corona virus. And move some 200000 Americans that we lost his. Is a heartbreak to each one of us but. We always want to give the American people the facts and as doctor Tony found she said not long ago all along the way. Everything that he told the president in the Oval Office president trump told the American people and that'll continue to be our approach. At a press briefing on September 16 president trumps and the Blue States had tremendous death rates if you take the Blue States out. We're at a level I don't think anybody in the world would be at. Taking that. The factual accuracy out of every month because of according to the Washington Post 53% in the deaths have been in Blue States. 47%. Had been in red states and nearly have a talk about 90000 in red states do you think it's appropriate for the president at this time to be talking. In terms of red states and Blue States when he's the president of the United States. I think the president's. Approach here has always been to recognize that live. The success that we have been able to have to make sure that no American that ever require a ventilator was denied a battle later that. That hospitals have this capacity in the personal protective equipment and supplies. That we search thousands of military medical personnel. Into the area's most impacted this because we've taken a state by state approach and that they'll be continue to be the approach we have the future. Let's turn now the Supreme Court and you've said in the past and with regard to Roe vs. Wade. That it should be thrown into ash heap of history where it belongs if this nominee does get onto the court. Can you assure Americans that Roe vs. Wade will be overturned. Well first this week we will mourn as a nation of true public servant passing justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She led an inspiring life and she was. A tenacious advocate for her judicial philosophy and we honor her service. And mourn her passing. But now comes a time the president will. Have the duty under the constitution of the United States to. Appoint a new justice of the Supreme Court and this Saturday I have every confidence. Of the president from now we'll we'll introduce of the nation. A woman who will love bring a judicial philosophy in the tradition of justice Antonin Scalia. To uphold the constitution cannot legislate. From the bench to apply laws as written that's that's the approach that we're taking and I notice the president goes through the process of of making a decision. It'll be it'll be his focus entirely on on choosing a woman who brings a background. The intellect and the judicial philosophy. That is that is consistent with. Justices the president has appointed in the more than 200 federal judges who appointed the court's. It's been reported ended Amy coming Barry is the top contender for in the Supreme Court job there has been some scrutiny. From some about her alleged affiliation with religious group people praise it in Indiana. And some people have suggested that they have practices that many Americans might find extreme. Do you feel that there's any concern. That she would be able to potentially keep this covenant with the organization at the same time. Come serve the American people independently and objectively on the Supreme Court. Judge bear it is an extraordinary jurists. And she's among a number of women that are currently under consideration. President of the United States. I must say at the intolerance. Expressed during her last confirmation hearings muttered Catholic faith I really think was a disservice. Into the process and a disappointment to millions of Americans. Judge ferret and and other judges currently under consideration. We have every confidence. Are exactly the kind of jurists. President has appointed from early in this administration. Switching gears now in his speech yesterday you reiterated something years and actually during the RNC as well. Whether Sargent Joseph biting you says that. You said Joseph Biden says that America is systemically racism that law enforcement in America has an implicit bias against minorities you said it. In a manner that sounded like you you disagree with that. Is it your belief that a black man in America it gets the same treatment as a white man in America by police. President trump and I believe the men and women who serve in law enforcement. Of every race and creed color. Or some of the best people in this country. And and we reject the notion. From Joseph Biden and others that there's an and bliss implicit bias. Toward minorities. In law enforcement. That being said when tragic circumstances happen. While some want to defund the police this Joseph Biden is actually advocated cutting funding law enforcement. President trump and I have been working with leaders in law enforcement. At the state and local level. To provide them more funding and more resources. We've worked with senator Tim Scott on Capitol Hill. To develop legislation that would give only resources to law enforcement. To improve public safety to improve training and accountability. And that's why is this really unconscionable that the Democrats in the senate actually blocked. Senator Tim Scott's bill that would provide new resources to law enforcement. What do you say to the protesters are specifically in the case of Rihanna Taylor. You're saying things have to change and in particular reacting to the statistic which you've heard reports that pull a black person is three times more likely be killed by police and a white person. What happened of Rihanna Taylor was a tragedy. And we're very confident the justice will be served. For the protesters. What's heartbreaking to me. Visit the leading cause of death. For African American men under the age of 44 is homicide. Mean he it is black families. That are struggling and suffering under the scourge. Violent crime in many of our major cities it's why president trump launched operation legend earlier this year. Named after little boy was literally killed sleeping in his home we're gonna continue to work. To advance their calls and and again and remain very confident. That one tragic circumstances arise that are the justice will be served. But we have to have law and order on our streets most especially for African American families and other families can call our major cities home. Lastly in the Bible and Matthew chapter twelve verse it exports as out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. Obviously you'd understand that it needs if you want to determine where someone's heart is you just listen to what they say. How do you square that let a president who frequently resorts to name calling sleaze bag losers and far worse. Prisoner Donald Trump. Has a heart for the American people. No prison and I've ever. Known. I see it in the way that he's worked every day to keep the promises he's made the American. When we took office for our military was hollowed out by years of reckless budget cuts this president. Kept his word from the men and women of armed forces we rebuild our military we. We've restored the arsenal of democracy in fact passed the largest pay raise more than ten years and I can tell you as the father of the United States marine as the father in law the navy pilot I couldn't be more proud. Serve alongside a president cares so deeply about the men and women of armed forces their families. And our veterans. As president said the forgotten men and women of America would be forgotten no more not truly do believe that that's why you're gonna see. Four more years of president Donald Trump in the White House because the people live. People that are rallying around our cause and have supported us every step of the way you know with this president has vice president. Spent promises made promises kept thank you very much for your time really appreciate it thank you.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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