VP Pence offers prayers, pep talk at Nevada base

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LAS VEGAS (AP) - Vice President Mike Pence offered prayers and a pep talk to military service members during a brief speech at Nellis Air Force Base outside Las Vegas.

Vice President Mike Pence listens to Nevada Sen. Dean Heller in a photograph tweeted by Heller's office.

In comments Thursday from a podium outside a hangar for the Air Force Thunderbirds aerial demonstration team, Pence told more than 1,000 camouflage-clad troops that President Donald Trump "has your back."

Pence drew applause when he said that under Trump, the era of armed forces budget cuts is over.

He says America now more than ever needs military excellence, expertise and dedication.

Pence earlier visited a newly opened Air Force testing, tactics and training development program near the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

He also offered words of support for two Nevada Republicans running for office this year.

U.S. Sen. Dean Heller is expected to face a tough re-election campaign, and state Attorney General Adam Laxalt is running for governor.


3:45 p.m.

Vice President Mike Pence is in Las Vegas, visiting a newly opened storefront testing, tactics and training development program and to speak to military service members at nearby Nellis Air Force Base.

Pence, Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson and Nevada's Republican U.S. Sen. Dean Heller stopped first Thursday at AFWERX, a nonprofit work space now open in office park near the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

Wilson outlined AFWERX during a visit to Las Vegas last July. It is designed as a storefront space for students, faculty, small business owners, entrepreneurs and military service members to share ideas and technological developments.

Officials say the goal is to cut costs while creating a conduit between industry, academia and the Air Force to speed development and testing of software and materials prototypes.

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