Vice President Mike Pence promised President Trump would continue to fight for the rights of the faithful, including rolling back the Johnson Amendment so churches can take more political stances.
Speaking to the annual gathering of the Faith and Freedom Coalition in Washington, D.C., on Saturday night, Pence touted the administration's progress on a number of issues. For the gathered crowd, religious freedom was top of the list.
The Johnson Amendment, named for then-Sen. Lyndon Johnson, prohibits 501(c)3 non-profit organizations — religious entities like churches — from endorsing particular candidates in political races. Trump has promised to end that amendment, and purported to do so in a showy White House press conference last month that had little legal effect.
However, Pence said that fight isn't done and Trump, who spoke to the group two days earlier, would spearhead an effort to repeal the amendment.
"Free speech shouldn't stop at the door of our churches, synagogues and places of worship," he said.
Pence touted other aspects of the Trump administration's religious agenda, such as the persecution of the free practice of religion becoming a major part of the administration's foreign policy.
Pence said the administration is committed to ending religious persecution around the world.
"Under President Donald Trump, America has made it clear this nation condemns persecution of any faith, in any place, at any time and we will confront it," he said.
Pence praised Trump's willingness to fight for the issues he believes in and ran through a litany of accomplishments from the early days of the Trump administration. The majority of his speech focused on an area he spoke about earlier in the day in Wisconsin — the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act.
Pence also promised a tax cut was coming that would put more money in the pockets of American families.
But, the message Pence sent the crowd home with was one that was a bit more melancholy.
He alluded to the widening partisan gap in government and politics, which appears to be spreading beyond political circles to the country at large. He called the country uncharacteristically divided and asked the crowd to go home and pray.
"In these times of widening challenges at home and abroad, seemingly unknowable threats and also a time of uncharacteristic division in America, I know you're the right people to encourage to do one more thing," he said. "And that is pray for America."