While speaking with host John Dickerson on CBS News' Face the Nation Sunday morning, Vice President Mike Pence refused to repeat the phrase "black lives matter" because he believes the leaders of the BLM movement are pushing a "radical left agenda."
After Dickerson asserted that protesters would like to hear leaders say the words "black lives matter," he asked the vice president why he would not say it. Pence said that "it's really a heart issue for me."
"I cherish the progress that we have made toward a more perfect union for African-Americans throughout our history. And I've aspired throughout my career to be a part of that ongoing work," Pence said. "And as a pro-life American, I also believe that all life matters, born and unborn. But what I see in the leaders of the Black Lives Matter movement is a political agenda of the radical left that would defund the police..."
He added that those who belong to the BLM movement are "tearing down monuments" in order to "press a radical left agenda."
"[Black Lives Matter] support calls for the kind of violence that has beset the very communities that they've said they are advocating for," Pence said.
Toward the conclusion of the interview, Dickerson circled back, asking, "So you won't say black lives matter?"
"John, I really believe that all lives matter," Pence responded. "And that's where the heart of the American people lies."