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Vice President Mike Pence issued a video message of support to Venezuelans on Tuesday to encourage those who are protesting against President Nicolas Maduro and underline U.S. backing for opposition leader Juan Guaido.

“On behalf of President Donald Trump and all the American people, let me express the unwavering support of the United States as you, the people of Venezuela, raise your voices in a call for freedom,” Pence said in his message. “Nicolas Maduro is a dictator with no legitimate claim to power. He has never won the presidency in a free and fair election, and has maintained his grip on power by imprisoning anyone who dares to oppose him.”

Maduro was sworn into another term as Venezuelan president this month; however, his government is considered largely “illegitimate” by much of the international community, who consider the elections held last year to be a sham.

Pence pledged U.S. support for National Assembly leader Guaido, who he called the “last vestige of democracy.”

“As you make your voices heard tomorrow, on behalf of the American people, we say to all the good people of Venezuela: estamos con ustdes,” Pence continued. “We are with you, we stand with you, and we will stay with you until democracy is restored and you reclaim your birthright of libertad.”

WIBC host Tony Katz:

“Venezuela has opportunity, but the people of Venezuela have to take on the Maduro regime directly. The United States recognizing someone else as their leader is a great way to help that along; I just don’t believe in any troops going into Venezuela.”

Click the link below to hear Tony’s full commentary: