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Pence returns to Atlanta for business roundtable

VP starts with eulogy for Christian evangelist Ravi Zacharia
Credit: WXIA / pool
Gov. Brian Kemp, VP Mike Pence, and Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson in Atlanta Friday

ATLANTA — Another week, and there was another visit from Vice President Mike Pence. 

On Friday, he once again praised Gov. Brian Kemp for reopening Georgia businesses in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.

Pence started his Atlanta visit with a visit to Passion City Church in Midtown, for funeral services for evangelist and "Christian apologist" Ravi Zacharias. Zacharias had traveled the world making the intellectual case for faith in Jesus Christ. 

"He was my friend," Pence told the audience. "God put him at my side at just the right time."

It was the start of a whirlwind visit that moved the vice president from Midtown to Downtown to a branch of Unity National Bank that has helped lead the distribution of small business loans in Atlanta’s African American community. 

A story on 11Alive News featured its challenges – and from what we’re told, that story caught the eye of the vice president’s office.

RELATED: Small business loan helped keep afloat critical health clinic on Atlanta's West End

Pence was here to discuss the $15 billion in loans the Paycheck Protection Program has provided to Georgia businesses as part of the pandemic stimulus. 

"I think there was some sincerity there," said George Andrews, who runs Unity's Atlanta operations. 

"The (PPP) program has been successful. However with the problems that have been facing our community we need far more resources than the PPP program," Andrews said following the vice president's visit. 

Andrews says Pence promised a return visit.

This was Pence's second visit to Georgia in eight days. And it could forecast the type of attention Georgia will get from both political parties ahead of the November general election. 

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