“We ought to assure the public that we'll have a full and complete and transparent investigation whenever there's a loss of life because of police action, but, Senator, please, you know, enough of this seeking every opportunity to demean law enforcement broadly by making the accusation of implicit bias every time tragedy occurs,” Pence said. Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine said communities and police are made safer through “community policing,” adding that Clinton also has a “comprehensive mental health reform package” and will “fight the scourge of gun violence.” “The way you make communities safer and the way you make police safer is through community policing. You build the bonds between the community and the police force, build bonds of understanding, and then when people feel comfortable in their communities, that gap between the police and the communities they serve narrows,” Kaine said. “And when that gap narrows, it's safer for the communities, and it's safer for the police. That model still works across our country, but there are some other models that don't work – an overly aggressive, more militarized model,” said Kaine, criticizing GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump’s call for “more stop-and-frisk” policing nationwide.
“That would be a big mistake, because it polarizes the relationship between the police and the community,” Kaine said. Kaine, “a gun owner” and self-proclaimed “strong Second Amendment supporter,” recalled the mass shooting at Virginia Tech University while he was governor, saying “that painful situation” revealed “gaps in the background record check system” that could have been prevented. “So we're going to work to do things like close background record checks, and if we do, we won't have the tragedies that we did,” Kaine added. Pence said he and Trump will give the police “the resources and tools” they need to “restore law and order.” “Police officers are the best of us, and the men and women, white, African-American, Asian, Latino, Hispanic, they put their lives on the line every single day. And let me say, at the risk of agreeing with you, community policing is a great idea. It's worked in the Hoosier state, and we fully support that,” Pence said.
Police “also hear the bad mouthing that comes from people that seize upon tragedy in the wake of police action shootings as a reason to use a broad brush to accuse law enforcement of implicit bias or institutional racism,” Pence said, “and that really has got to stop.” Pence then referenced the shooting of Keith Lamont Scott in Charlotte, N.C., saying the officer involved in his shooting was “an African-American police officer in Charlotte named Brentley Vinson,” who followed his father into law enforcement. “It was a tragedy,” Pence said. “We mourn with those who mourn. We grieve with those who grieve, and we’re saddened at the loss of life, but Hillary Clinton actually referred to that moment as an example of implicit bias in the police force. “When she was asked in the debate a week ago whether there was implicit bias in law enforcement, her only answer was that there's implicit bias in everyone in the United States,” Pence said. “I just think what we ought to do is we ought to stop seizing on these moments of tragedy. “We ought to assure the public that we'll have a full and complete and transparent investigation whenever there's a loss of life because of police action, but, Senator, please, you know, enough of this seeking every opportunity to demean law enforcement broadly by making the accusation of implicit bias every time tragedy occurs,” Pence added.
The moderator, CBS News correspondent Elaine Quijano, asked Pence about Sen. Tim Scott’s (R-S.C.) personal account on the Senate floor of being stopped by law enforcement seven times in one year. “He said, ‘I have felt the anger, the frustration, the sadness, and the humiliation that comes with feeling like you're being targeted for nothing more than being just yourself.’ What would you say to Senator Scott about his experiences?” Quijana asked. “Well, I have the deepest respect for Senator Scott, and he's a close friend. And what I would say is that we need to adopt criminal justice reform nationally. I signed criminal justice reform in the state of Indiana, Senator, and we're very proud of it,” said Pence, adding that he worked on “a second chance act” while he was in Congress. “We have got to do a better job recognizing and correcting the errors in the system that do reflect on institutional bias in criminal justice, but what Donald Trump and I are saying is let's not have the reflex of assuming the worst of men and women in law enforcement. We truly do believe that law enforcement is not a force for racism or division in our country,” Pence added.