The speaker of the National Veterans Day Observance speech is Michael Richard Pence (usually referred to as Mike Pence), the 48th and current Vice President of the United States of America, who has held this office since 2017. Pence frequently quotes President Donald Trump during his speech, which suggests that he is also speaking for the President. As Vice President, Pence is the second-in-command to the President, which makes it appropriate for him to stand in for President Trump at Arlington, and give the speech on his behalf and on behalf of all Americans: “To our veterans, on behalf of the President of the United States and a grateful nation, I say, thank you for your service.” (ll. 344-347)
Before being Vice President, Pence served as a member of the United States House of Representatives from 2001 to 2013 and as Governor of Indiana from 2013 to 2017. As he himself states, Pence has never served in the Armed Forces; however, he suggests that he understands what it means to be in the Armed Forces, since his father was a soldier, and his son is a Marine (ll. 249-262).
Pence is a Republican, a conservative, and a declared follower of the Christian faith. Some of his political, social, and religious views are also reflected in the speech. For example, his pro-family values are reflected in the fact that he mentions his family members – his father, his wife, and his son. Pence’s Christian faith is reflected in the speech in his repeated references to God, whom he mentions four times during the speech. He also quotes the Bible (ll. 46-48), including a Psalm (ll. 318-320). References to the national anthem and respected historical figures – former Presidents such as Abraham Lincoln (ll. 128-132), Ronald Reagan (ll. 234-238), and Franklin D. Roosevelt (ll. 240-241) - point to Pence’s patriotism, which helps him connect to his a...