I am 'proud' of Pence for leaving the Colts game

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Vice President and former IN state Governor Mike Pence left the Indianapolis Colts game early, after players refused to stand for the national anthem. VP Pence was there to watch his home state team, but left when several players from both teams knelt during the playing of the Star Spangled Banner.

"I am proud of him and second lady Karen", he said on Twitter.

A number of football players have started kneeling during the national anthem in recent weeks, as a form of peaceful protest.

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Pence, who has gone out of his way to demonstrate loyalty to Trump, said in his statement it was important to rally around the flag and things that unite the country. "I stand with President Trump, I stand with our soldiers, and I will always stand for our Flag and our National Anthem", wrote Pence.

As White House criticism of of the gesture continued Sunday, CBS walked back its report that Colin Kaepernick, the player who first employed it past year, had said he would stand for the anthem if he was signed by a new team.

It remains to be seen how this will play out in game attendance and television ratings, but it seems obvious that the National Football League has been hurt badly by its tacit endorsement of protests that most Americans see as wholly unjustified and anti-patriotic.

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Many franchises have also released statements of support for their players, and a poll has also indicated a majority of Americans disagree with Mr Trump's demand for kneeling players to be fired. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell criticised Mr Trump for his comments, calling them "divisive".

After his exit, Pence posted a photo of himself and his wife standing for the anthem at the game on Sunday.

Kaepernick said past year he hoped to spark a discussion about racism when he opted not to stand for the anthem.

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