Former Vice President Mike Pence has directly denied Donald Trump’s false claims that he may have somehow overturned the results of the 2020 election, saying the former president was simply “wrong.” “.
In a speech to a meeting of the conservative Federalist Association in Florida on Friday, Pence said Trump’s Intensified Effort this week to give the false story that, as vice president, he has the power to unilaterally block President Joe Biden from taking office.
“President Trump was wrong,” Pence said. “I have no power to overturn the election.”
Pence’s statement marks his strongest response yet to Trump, who has spent his presidency making up for the lie that the 2020 campaign has been stolen from him. And it comes as Pence begins to lay the groundwork for a potential 2024 presidential run, which could put him in direct competition with his former boss, who is also gearing up for a The race is back.
The relationship between the two men took on a new impetus this week as Trump escalated his attacks on Pence.
In a statement Tuesday, Trump said the committee investigating the deadly January 6 attack on Capitol Hill should instead probe “why Mike Pence did not return the ballot for recertification or approval.” Browser.” And on Sunday, he criticized Pence, falsely claiming that “he could have overturned the Election!”
The vice presidents only have a ceremonial role in counting the votes of the electors, and any attempt to interfere with the counting of votes would represent an unusual violation of the law and attack the democratic process. .
Pence, in remarks Friday to the legal team in Lake Buena Vista, described January 6, 2021, as “a dark day in the history of the United States Capitol” and framed his actions. that day was in keeping with his obligations as a constitutional conservative.
“The American people must know that we will always keep our oath to the Constitution, even when doing otherwise is politically appropriate,” he told the group on Friday. He noted that, under Article II, Section One of the Constitution, “elections are conducted at the state level, not by Congress” and that “Congress’s sole role in the Electoral College is to open and tally of votes submitted and certified. by the states. Not much, not less.”
He went on to appeal to those who have insisted that is not the case.
“Honestly, there is no more un-American idea than the notion that anyone can choose the president of the United States,” he added. “Under the Constitution, I have no power to change the outcome of our election. And Kamala Harris won’t have the power to overturn the election when we beat them in 2024.”
The audience applauded Pence’s quote about beating Democrats in the upcoming presidential election, but remained silent when Pence said earlier that “Trump was wrong.”
When Pence protested against Trump in Florida, Republican officials gathered in Utah to engage them more closely with the former president. Republican National Committee censored Representatives Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois for participating on the committee investigating the January 6 uprising. The GOP also criticized the panel for leading a “suppression of ordinary citizens.” engage in legitimate political discourse.”
Pence was inside the Capitol on January 6, presiding over a joint session of Congress to certify the presidential election, when a mob of Trump supporters violently smashed inside, assaulting soldiers. police officers and hunt down legislators. Pence, who released a letter shortly before the session began, making it clear he had no authority to overturn the will of voters, was taken to safety as some rioters chanted “Hang Mike Pence!”
In his speech on Friday, the former vice president acknowledged the lingering anger of many in Trump’s base, even as he said it was time to “focus on the future.”
“The truth is, there is more at stake than our party or political fortunes,” he said. “Men and women, if we lose faith in the Constitution, we will not only lose elections – we will lose our country.”
Trump aides did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the speech. Trump issued a statement shortly afterward shutting down the committee on January 6, but notably made no mention of Pence.
Trump’s escalating rhetoric comes as he is under increasing scrutiny by the committee, which has now interviewed hundreds of witnesses, issued dozens of subpoenas and obtained documents. government that Trump tries to keep hidden.
It also comes as a bipartisan group of lawmakers push for an update to the Voter Count Act to remove any ambiguity about the vice president’s role.
Pence has so far attempted to thread a needle into his actions on January 6, further infuriating much of Trump’s base, posing a potential complication if he runs for president in 2024 .
In recent months, he has often involuntarily brought up the events of that day but has defended his actions when pressed, saying he adhered to his constitutional role. Last year, he said in a statement that he would “always be proud that we did our part on that tragic day to reconvene Congress and fulfill our obligations under the Constitution and the law.” of the United States.”
He also accused Democrats and the media of continuing to focus on the uprising to score political points against Republicans and divert attention from Biden’s agenda.
While a basic statement of fact, Pence’s decision to describe Trump as “a mistake” is particularly significant given Pence’s standing in the White House. As Trump’s vice president, Pence has special respect for him, never voicing dissent publicly and defending even his most controversial actions.
After spending a few months on edge after leaving the White House, Pence is back in the spotlight. He founded his own political advocacy group and has traveled the country, visiting early voting states, giving speeches and organizing fundraisers for midterm candidates. Pence, unlike some possible 2024 presidential candidates, has refused to rule out running against Trump. He is also working on a book.
Democratic Representative Bennie Thompson of Mississippi, who chairs the Jan. 6 committee, and Democrat Adam Schiff of California have both said they plan to call Pence to testify as part of their investigations. . So far it is unclear what Pence will do.
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https://www.winknews.com/2022/02/05/pence-trump-is-wrong-to-say-election-could-be-overturned/ Trump was ‘wrong’ to say the election could be overturned