During the final weekend of campaigning before Tuesday’s U.S. presidential election, the frontrunners made appearances in battleground states, including campaign stops at some churches. In their speeches, the Republican incumbents and Democratic hopefuls urged Americans to vote by November 3 to choose the country’s leadership.
Former VP Joe Biden Is Heckled Outside Church
On Sunday, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden attended St. Joseph on the Brandywine, the church he belongs to in Greenville, Delaware. Though the visit wasn’t a campaign stop, several protesters held signs addressing Biden’s support for abortion rights. “No Catholic can vote for Joe Biden,” one sign read. A reporter tweeted that chants from hecklers included, “Repent for your soul” and “Joe! You’re a disgrace to the Catholic faith!”
Meanwhile, Biden’s wife, Jill, spoke outside Bethel Missionary Baptist Church in Tallahassee, Florida, as part of a “Souls to the Polls” event. Joined by the family of George Floyd, an African American man who died at the hands of white police officers in May, Jill Biden talked about racial injustice, saying, “Our hearts are broken for every life taken too soon.”
President Donald Trump Speaks in Five States
In his bid for re-election, Republican President Donald Trump spoke at rallies in five states this weekend. He emphasized that America is “rounding the turn” on the coronavirus pandemic, for which he said his administration has “done an A-plus job.” When a crowd started chanting “Fire [Dr.] Fauci!” Trump responded, “Don’t tell anybody, but let me wait until a little bit after the election. I appreciate the advice.”
At stops in hotly contested Pennsylvania, Trump criticized the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision about that state’s ballot-counting timelines. “We’re going in with our lawyers” as soon as voting ends, Trump said, casting doubt specifically on ballots cast in Philadelphia. While waiting for election results to be tabulated, the president said, Americans will experience “bedlam in our country.”
Kamala Harris Speaks at Baptist Church in Texas
Biden’s running mate, California Sen. Kamala Harris, made a campaign stop at First St. John Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Texas. Bishop Kenneth Spears, the pastor, led attendees in singing the gospel song “Never Would Have Made It.”
Harris addressed allegations of voter suppression in minority communities, accused President Trump of withholding key information about the pandemic back in January, and spoke about the need for health care that covers people with pre-existing conditions.
Harris’ husband, Doug Emhoff, recently stumped for the Democratic ticket in Boone, North Carolina, calling Biden a man of honor and Harris a “product of the American dream.”
VP Mike Pence Attends Church With Franklin Graham
Boone also was the site of a visit from Vice President Mike Pence, who accepted an invitation to attend church on Sunday with evangelist Franklin Graham. The worship service at Alliance Bible Fellowship wasn’t open to reporters, and Pence didn’t speak publicly afterward.
Also in attendance was U.S. Rep. Virginia Foxx, who says she’s “good friends” with the vice president. Calling this election season “a lot like a roller coaster,” Foxx added, “The difference between the [presidential] candidates is being shown right now.”
Pence, head of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, spoke at other North Carolina stops too, addressing topics such as his pro-life stance.