Pence seemed optimistic that the Supreme Court will rule in favor of the travel ban that has been blocked by the lower courts. The executive order temporarily halts travel from several majority-Muslim countries. A ruling on the matter could come as early as Friday.
“The ability to come in to the United States of America is a privilege, not a right,” Pence said.
He used recent terror attacks as part of the reason the travel ban and “extreme vetting” were so essential to U.S. interests.
“In both cases what we see if a grim reminder of the ruthlessness of those who threaten our country and threaten our allies,” Pence said.
Pence also praised Trump’s decision to leave the Paris Climate Agreement, a long-anticipated exit that was cheered on the right and protested on the left.
“What the world witnessed yesterday was an American president putting America first,” said Pence, who called the climate accord an “extraordinary burden on the American economy” that nevertheless allowed competing powers to go largely unchecked.
Pence said the U.S. intended “to lead in the world, not follow in the world.” But he also framed the climate deal announcement as another example of Trump not straying from the promises he made while campaigning for the White House.
“We’re putting the American worker and the American economy first,” Pence said.
The Vice President called it “humbling” to be part of the Trump team, listing what he saw as the administration’s numerous early successes, including stepping up the war on ISIS, establishing border integrity, tending to a surging economy and appointing a conservative justice to the Supreme Court.
“What’s startling to some of the elites in this country and around the world about President Donald Trump,” Pence said, “is he’s doing exactly what he said he would do.”