Pence blames Trump for endangering his family on Jan. 6

Pence’s book largely defends Trump, covering many of his most controversial episodes, but makes it clear that January 6, 2021 is a breaking point.

WASHINGTON — Former Vice President Mike Pence blamed Donald Trump for endangering his family “and all those serving on the Capitol” on January 6 in a new memoir released on Tuesday. .

In “So Help Me God,” Pence first recounts, in his own words, the extraordinary effort by the former Republican president to push him to overturn the results of the 2020 election and share His story of the day thousands of rioters stormed the Capitol, with some chanting “Hang Mike Pence.”

“They have come to protest the election results and prevent Congress from fulfilling its responsibility to open and count the votes of the Electoral College,” Pence wrote. And, I later learned, many people came to me.”

The book follows Pence’s political life — from serving as a youth coordinator for a local Democratic Party to witnessing then-Vice President Al Gore confirm his election defeat after Pence was sworn in as a member of Congress — largely in favor of Trump, criticized. over and whitewashed many of his most controversial episodes. The book begins: “I have always been loyal to President Donald Trump.

But Pence, who spent years refusing to publicly criticize his former boss, made it clear that January 6, 2021, was a breaking point, as he wrote, “Trump’s reckless words caused dangerous to my family and all who serve on the Capitol.”

“For four years, we had a close working relationship. It didn’t end well,” Pence wrote, summarizing their time in the White House. However, he added, “we parted amicably as our service to the country came to an end. In the months that followed, we spoke occasionally, but when the president turned around. Going back to the rhetoric he used before that tragic day and starting to openly criticize the defenders of the Constitution among us, I decided it was best to go our separate ways.”

The book, published by Simon & Schuster, comes as Pence is increasingly likely to run for president in 2024, a move that could put him in direct conflict with Trump, who is expected to officially run for president in 2024. kicked off his own re-election campaign in Florida on Tuesday night.

Pence, who in the book never directly claims that Democrat Joe Biden won fairly, writes that when Trump first suggested holding a campaign rally in Washington on June 6. January, the day that Pence was chosen to chair the election certification, he thought it was a good thing. idea. “My first thought was that a demonstration that day could be useful as a way to draw more attention to proceedings in the House and Senate,” he wrote.

Instead, Pence described sitting in the Senate chamber and presiding over the certification as the senator leaned over to inform him that rioters had broken into the building and that a member of the Secret Service had broken into the building. His officers rushed over to ask them to leave. Pence refused to leave the building and was instead taken to a Senate pier, where he spent hours, surrounded by staff and family members, phoning leaders military and congressional to coordinate the government’s response, as the president – who never bothered to check on Pence’s safety – sat in the convent, watching TV.

“All around was a blur and chaotic motion: security and police officers guiding people to safety, officers screaming and running for shelter. I could see the tension in my body. eyes of Secret Service details; that could also be heard in the Metropolitan Police’s voice. I could hear footsteps and angry chanting,” Pence wrote. However, Pence insisted he was “not afraid”, just angry at what was happening.

At 2:24 p.m., while Pence was still in hiding, Trump posted the infamous tweet saying that Pence “didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution.”

Mr. Pence replied: “I just shook my head. The truth is, as reckless as the president’s tweet is, I really don’t have time for that. Rioters are ransacking the Capitol. … The president decided to be part of the problem. I am determined to be part of the solution. I ignored the tweet and got back to work.”

Pence also described Trump’s campaign as an attempt to pressure him to deny election results by rejecting Electoral College ballots or sending them back to the states, even though the Constitution clearly states that The vice president’s role is purely ceremonial.

During a lunch on November 16, 2020, Pence said he had told Trump that “if the legal challenges are short-lived and if he doesn’t want to give in, then he can simply accept the results of the election, continue the transition and start a political comeback, win the Senate election in Georgia, the Virginia gubernatorial race in 2021, the House and Senate in 2022.”

“That done, I said, he can run for president in 2024 and win,” Pence wrote. He seemed unmoved, even tired, by the prospect.”

“‘I don’t know, 2024 is a long way off,’ Pence wrote that Trump told him “before returning to voting defiance in various states.”

During another lunch, Pence said he had encouraged Trump to “don’t view the election as ‘a failure – just a hiatus'” and said that if he “still failed” after using After running out of all legal options, Trump should “bow” and then run again.

“He nodded, pointed at me as if to say, ‘That’s worth looking into,’ and walked into the back hallway,” Pence wrote. “I will always wish he had.”

But as the lawsuits that Trump’s legal team is pushing continue to fail, Pence writes that Trump’s mood has turned dark and he has grown increasingly angry. Pence said that Trump berated him, telling him, “You’re too honest,” and predicting that “hundreds of thousands of people will hate you” and that “everyone will think you’re stupid.”

“As the days go by, it becomes clear that there will be real political costs to me as I preside over the 2020 election certification,” Pence wrote. “I have always known that I do not have the authority to overturn the decision of the election. I know it will hurt my friend if I join the certification. But my mission is very clear.”

After the Capitol was cleared of the rioters, Congress reconvened and Pence presided over the confirmation of his and Trump’s defeat. For days, the two men did not speak. But when they finally met, five days later, Pence said they had been alone for more than 90 minutes.

“I told him I’ve been praying for him for the past four and a half years, and I encouraged him to pray,” Pence said he told Trump. “Jesus can help you through this,” I said. .’ He didn’t say anything.”

“In a really sad tone, the president then mused, ‘What if we didn’t have a protest? What if they don’t come to the Capitol?’ Then he said, ‘It’s so horrible to end up like this.'” Pence blames Trump for endangering his family on Jan. 6

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