Vice President Mike Pence was repeatedly asked if he would utter the words, “Black Lives Matter,” during an interview with Philadelphia’s ABC affiliate on Friday.
But Pence refused, instead proclaiming at one point that “all lives matter.”
Channel 6’s Brian Taff began his interview with Pence by noting that America is in the midst of a movement fueled by the words “Black Lives Matter” — and yet only handful of elected Republican leaders in Washington have been willing to utter them.
“I wonder, sir, if those are words that you will utter right here today: ‘Black Lives Matter.’ Can you say those words?” Taff said.
“Well, Brian, let me just say that what happened to George Floyd was a tragedy, and in this nation, especially on Juneteenth, we celebrate the fact that from the founding of this nation, we celebrate the ideal that all of us are created equal, and endowed with certain inalienable rights, and so all lives matter in a very real sense,” Pence said, before rambling through some talking points.
“Forgive me for pressing you on this, sir, but I will note you did not say those words, ‘Black Lives Matter,’ and there is an important distinction,” Taff said, returning to his initial question. “Of course all lives matter, but to say the words is an acknowledgement that Black lives also matter at a time in this country when it appears that there’s a segment of our society that doesn’t agree. So why will you not say those words?”
“Well, I don’t accept the fact, Brian, that there’s a segment of American society that disagrees with the preciousness and importance of every human life,” Pence responded, before launching into even more talking points.
“And yet, one final time, you won’t say the words, and we understand your explanation,” Taff said, before moving on to another topic.
Watch it below.