After a group of former President Donald Trump’s supporters breached the US Capitol on January 6, forcing lawmakers to evacuate and leaving multiple people dead, questions have lingered about the timeline of events.
Some of those details have emerged in an internal Defense Department document that was obtained by the Associated Press.
Vice President Mike Pence, who was in the building when the Capitol riot began, made an urgent call amid the chaos.
“Clear the Capitol,” Pence told Acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller, the Associated Press reported. Pence was in a “secure location” when he made the call, but the Capitol had already been overrun by rioters for two hours.
The Associated Press pieced together the timeline of the siege based on the document and previously known details.
According to the outlet, the timeline “lays bare the inaction by then-President Donald Trump” and “shows that the intelligence missteps, tactical errors and bureaucratic delays were eclipsed by the government’s failure to comprehend the scale and intensity of a violent uprising by its own citizens.”
Pence was at the Capitol on January 6 to oversee the counting of electoral college votes and certify President Joe Biden’s victory. Trump encouraged his supporters to come to Washington, DC, to “stop the steal,” a reference to his unsubstantiated claims of widespread voter fraud.
Before the siege, Trump addressed a crowd of his supporters and told them to march to the Capitol. He also lashed out at Pence for not blocking the count of the electoral college, despite the vice president’s role being largely ceremonial.
Former President Donald Trump didn’t include his former vice president in his list of “very good” Republican leaders and potential 2024 presidential candidates during a new interview with conservative commentator Lisa Boothe.
Instead, Trump named Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, former White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, and South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem.
“Ron DeSantis is doing a really good job in Florida,” he said. “I think Josh Hawley has shown some real courage in going after big tech … Somebody that’s been really terrific is Ted Cruz.”
He added, “Rand Paul has been great … Sarah Huckabee is going to do great in Arkansas. I think that Kristi Noem has done a terrific job … The Republican Party is stacked.”
Trump said he’ll make his decision on whether or not to run for reelection “later.”
Pence is reportedly considering a 2024 presidential bid if Trump decides not to run. Following the election, Trump accused Pence of lacking the “courage” to illegally overturn the presidential election results, inciting pro-Trump rioters who stormed the Capitol building on Jan. 6 to call for Pence’s hanging.
During the interview, Trump also repeated his false claims that Pence could have rejected certain states’ Electoral College votes during the Jan. 6 joint session of Congress.
“It’s too bad Mike Pence didn’t go back, because you would have had a much different result had Mike Pence gone – he could have said, ‘I’m sorry, but this was not approved by the state legislature, and according to the Constitution, it had to be,'” Trump said.
Pence hasn’t publicly criticized Trump’s pressure campaign against him even as the former president has continued to lie about the election results and Pence’s role in certifying the election.
The former president took the opportunity to attack a few fellow Republicans, including Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Ben Sasse, who he called a “loser.”
Trump also said he’ll continue to endorse Republican candidates who support his agenda, even if they’ve “said something a little bit off-color with respect to me.”
Former President Donald Trump is seriously considering running for the White House again in 2024, and advisors are pushing him to drop former Vice President Mike Pence as his running mate if he does so, Bloomberg reported.
Three sources told Bloomberg that Pence likely won’t be on the ticket should Trump run again.
Close advisors want him to go with a Black or female vice presidential pick, sources familiar with the discussions told Bloomberg. Two advisors singled out South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem, an ardent Trump defender, per Bloomberg.
A person familiar with the matter told Bloomberg that they doubt Pence would run with Trump again, but that Pence hasn’t specified whether he’s interested or not. Trump teased a 2024 run at last week’s Conservative Political Action Conference.
But Trump advisor Jason Miller told Bloomberg that Trump “hasn’t made any decisions regarding a potential 2024 run” and contested that any conversations were happening about picking a new running mate.
Insider has contacted Trump’s office for comment on the Bloomberg report. Bloomberg said a Pence spokesperson did not respond to its request for comment.
Trump and Pence seemed to fall out near the end of their term, when the vice president refused to get behind the Trump’s plan to overturn the 2020 election result.
Trump lashed out at Pence on social media for not trying to block the certification of the election results on January 6, an act that Pence had no constitutional authority to do.
But Pence’s former chief of staff, Marc Short, downplayed the tension in an interview with CNN, saying Trump and Pence “talked several times before they departed” the White House, and that they left things “amicably.”
Pence himself has been heavily discussed as a potential 2024 GOP candidate, but still lags in popularity to Trump. A recent Harvard-Harris poll found that 42% of Republicans wanted Trump as their 2024 nominee, compared to 18% who preferred Pence.
Former Vice President Mike Pence came out swinging on Wednesday, writing an op-ed that criticized House Democrats’ sweeping election reform bill as “unconstitutional power grab.”
The Democratic-backed House Resolution 1 (HR1), known as the For the People Act, would end partisan gerrymandering, expand early and absentee voting, establish national standards for voter registration, and blunt voter purges, among other reforms.
In his article for The Daily Signal, Pence argues that the bill would take away responsibilities that should be left to the states.
“Election reform is a national imperative, but under our Constitution, election reform must be undertaken at the state level,” he wrote. “Our Founders limited Congress’ role in conducting our elections for good reason: They wanted elections to be administered closest to the people, free from undue influence of the national government.”
He added: “While legislators in many states have begun work on election reform to restore public confidence in state elections, unfortunately, congressional Democrats have chosen to sweep those valid concerns and reforms aside and to push forward a brazen attempt to nationalize elections in blatant disregard of the US Constitution.”
Trump’s claims of voter and election fraud are false.
While Republicans hope to use their majorities in key states to cement new Congressional districts to their liking, HR 1 would take away that responsibility, mandating that states adopt independent redistricting commissions.
To Pence, such a move only adds to his staunch opposition to the bill.
“Congressional districts would be redrawn by unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats,” he wrote. “Leftists not only want you powerless at the ballot box, they want to silence and censor anyone who would dare to criticize their unconstitutional power grab.”
The former vice president says that having served in federal and statewide office, access to voting and secure elections are paramount.
(The 2020 election was among the most secure in modern history, and there is no evidence of widespread voter or election fraud.)
“HR 1 would turn a blind eye to very real problems at the state level, exacerbate existing vulnerabilities, and further undermine the American people’s confidence in the principle of ‘one person, one vote,'” he wrote.
Pence did not mention Trump in the op-ed, despite him still reportedly enjoying a warm relationship with the former president.
After the January 6 Capitol riots and the Electoral College certification process, which Trump tried to use to pressure Pence to overturn the election results, the former vice president initially kept a low profile, but has slowly emerged back into the political world.
Last week, he met with members of the conservative Republican Study Committee and told the group that he intends to start a political organization that will protect the legacy of the former administration, according to a CNN report.
Former vice president Mike Pence has declined an invitation to the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), where former president Donald Trump is scheduled to make his first public speech since leaving office.
The conference opens on Thursday in Orlando, Florida, and is one of the year’s most important conservative political gatherings.
As one of the most high profile conservatives in the US, Pence is usually a prominent speaker at the event.
Republican Sen. Tommy Tuberville on Friday repeated his assertion that he informed President Donald Trump of Vice President Mike Pence’s evacuation from the Senate during the Capitol siege. Trump’s team had cast doubt on the claim during their defense.
“I said: Mr. President, they’ve taken the vice president out. They want me to get off the phone, I gotta go,” Tuberville said, according to CNN and other accounts. Tuberville also said he was “probably the only guy in the world” to hang up on the president.
The phone call, and the timeline, have come under scrutiny during Trump’s impeachment trial, as senators question if Trump knew Pence was in danger from the violent mob when he sent out a tweet attacking the vice president.
“Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution,” Trump tweeted at 2:24 p.m. on January 6, as a mob of his supporters closed in on the Senate chamber. Pence was evacuated at about 2:15 p.m. local time.
Tuberville first revealed Wednesday evening he had informed Trump of Pence’s evacuation in real time. The president had called the Alabama senator to encourage him to protest the certification of the election.
GOP Sen. Bill Cassidy of Louisiana asked Trump’s lawyers and the impeachment managers specifically about the tweet during the questioning portion of the trial Friday.
“The tweet and lack of response suggest President Trump did not care that Vice President Pence was endangered or that law enforcement was overwhelmed,” Cassidy said. “Does this show that President Trump was tolerant of the intimidation of Vice President Pence?”
Trump’s defense lawyer Michael van der Veen disputed the facts of the timeline that Cassidy presented, calling Tuberville’s claim “hearsay.”
Following the exchange, reporters questioned Tuberville about the phone call, prompting him to reiterate his version of the events.
Some lawmakers were also dissatisfied with the response of Trump’s lawyers.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren told reporters she did not think the response was adequate and that the question was important, but “Donald Trump’s lawyers simply, once again, tried to distract, look another way, and take attention away from the underlying question about what the evidence showed that Donald Trump knew and when he knew it.”
Independent Sen. Angus King told also reporters he thought the question was important and that the response of Trump’s lawyers was insufficient.
Rep. Jamie Raskin on Sunday said US Capitol rioters were violently seeking House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Vice President Mike Pence during the Capitol siege on January 6.
“They built a gallows outside the Capitol of the United States,” Raskin said in an interview on CNN’s State of the Union with Jake Tapper Sunday. “There was an assassination party hunting for Nancy Pelosi.”
Raskin is the lead impeachment manager against President Donald Trump who on Wednesday faced a second impeachment for “incitement of insurrection.”
Lead impeachment manager Rep. Jamie Raskin said the US Capitol riot was “an attack on our country” and recalled how pro-Trump rioters violently sought out Vice President Mike Pence and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi during the Capitol breach earlier this month.
When asked about the timeline for the articles of impeachment, Raskin responded, “I know that everybody wants to focus on trial tactics and strategy and so on. I want people to focus on the solemnity and gravity of these events. Five Americans are dead because a violent mob was encouraged, exhorted, and incited by the President of the United States of America.”
The House of Representatives is poised to pass a resolution Tuesday demanding Vice President Mike Pence immediately invoke the 25th Amendment and remove President Donald Trump from office.
The vice president announced just before the vote that he won’t be doing so because it will set a “terrible precedent” and further “inflame the passions of the moment.”
The House will next move to impeach the president for “incitement of insurrection” and is expected to hold a vote on Wednesday.
Pence and Trump spoke by phone Monday evening — their first conversation since the insurrection — and “pledged to continue the work on behalf of the country for the remainder of their term,” a senior official told CNN.
Trump is facing a mountain of political and potential legal trouble after he incited a deadly riot at the US Capitol last week that resulted in five deaths.
The House of Representatives is poised to pass a resolution on Tuesday calling on Vice President Mike Pence and President Donald Trump’s Cabinet to invoke the 25th Amendment and remove Trump from office.
But Pence announced before the House vote that he would reject the effort and accused the House of playing “political games.” He argued that invoking the 25th Amendment would be divisive and set a “terrible precedent” that would further “inflame the passions of the moment.”
Tuesday’s resolution comes after Trump incited a deadly riot at the Capitol on January 6 while Congress was counting up the electoral votes in the 2020 election and preparing to finalize President-elect Joe Biden’s victory.
In their resolution, lawmakers accused Trump of inciting the mob and undermining the Constitution, demonstrating “repeatedly, continuously, and spectularly his absolute inability to discharge the most basic and fundamental powers and duties of his office.”
Rep. Jamie Raskin, a Maryland Democrat who helped author the resolution, said ousting the president for violating his oath of office was “the road to reconciliation” amid national turmoil. He praised Pence for ratifying the Electoral College vote last week – prompting Trump to accuse him of lacking “courage” – and urged him to “stand up again.”
“Can you imagine any other president in our history encouraging and fomenting mob violence against the Congress of the United States? Against our people? That’s the question,” Raskin said during a House Rules Committee hearing on Tuesday.
‘The 25th Amendment is of zero risk to me but will come back to haunt Joe Biden’
Trump refused to take any responsibility for last week’s deadly siege of the Capitol, telling reporters on Tuesday that “everybody” thought his speech egging on his loyalists was “totally appropriate.” During a speech in Alamo, Texas, on Tuesday, Trump dismissed the threat of his removal through the 25th Amendment.
“The 25th Amendment is of zero risk to me but will come back to haunt Joe Biden and the Biden administration – as the expression goes, be careful what you wish for,” he said.
Trump also warned that the effort to impeach him is “causing tremendous anger and division and pain” and is “dangerous for the USA especially at this very tender time.”
Business Insider reported last week that the vice president, who was presiding over Congress, is not inclined to take the drastic step of removing the president via the 25th Amendment. On Monday evening, he and Trump spoke by phone for the first time since the riot and pledged to continue their work until the end of their terms, again signaling that Trump will not be removed by his Cabinet.
This comes as an increasing number of Republican lawmakers have announced or suggested that they’ll vote to impeach the president for inciting an insurrection. Rep. Liz Cheney, the third-highest ranking House Republican, joined GOP Reps. John Katko and Adam Kinzinger in announcing on Tuesday evening that they support the president’s impeachment.
At a rally shortly before Congress convened last week, the president called on his supporters to march to the Capitol and stop the peaceful transfer of power.
“You’ll never take back our country with weakness,” he told thousands of people who had gathered to hear him speak. “You have to show strength, and you have to be strong.”
“We’re going to have to fight much harder,” Trump added, before unleashing the mob.
Thousands of Trump supporters overran the US Capitol, hunting for lawmakers
The attempted coup resulted in five deaths, including a Capitol Police officer who died after Trump supporters struck him with a fire extinguisher. Rioters breached barriers outside the Capitol, swarmed the building, ransacked lawmakers’ offices, vandalized property, and stole records that the Justice Department said may have contained “national security equities.”
Pence was quickly evacuated along with senior lawmakers, while other members of Congress sheltered in place or behind makeshift barricades with Hill staffers and reporters.
Additional footage and media reports that have come out since the riot indicate it could have been far deadlier had lawmakers not been evacuated in time. A crowd of Trump supporters chanted “Hang Mike Pence” outside the Capitol, and a Reuters photojournalist said he overheard three rioters talking about wanting to hang him “from a Capitol Hill tree as a traitor.”
One man who has since been arrested sent a text message before the insurrection saying he was going to “put a bullet” in House Speaker Nancy Pelosi “on live TV.” Another was arrested while carrying 11 Molotov cocktails. And several rioters who were photographed inside the Capitol were seen carrying zip ties used to take hostages and dressed in tactical gear.
After the insurrection, it surfaced that many members of the mob are active law enforcement officers and ex-military personnel, and police departments across the country have since launched investigations to determine if members of their forces took part in the attempted coup.
Pence, for his part, was livid with the president amid the riot and refused to be evacuated to a safe location outside the Capitol grounds.
“I’ve known Mike Pence forever,” Oklahoma Sen. Jim Inhofe told the Tulsa World newspaper last Wednesday. “I’ve never seen Pence as angry as he was today.”
President Donald Trump did not speak with Vice President Mike Pence for several days following the siege on the Capitol.
Pence was in the building at the time of the insurrection and was targeted by the pro-Trump mob over his refusal to interfere with the certification of the presidential election results, a point Trump himself brought up to his followers several times.
Trump actually targeted Pence during the siege and tweeted: “Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our country” as his supporters stormed the building.
On Wednesday, as a mob of Trump supporters staged a violent insurrection at the Capitol, President Donald Trump was tweeting – not in support of the hundreds of members of Congress trapped within the building, but against Vice President Mike Pence.
“Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution, giving States a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certify. USA demands the truth!” President Trump wrote at 2:24 p.m., as the pro-Trump mob was breaching the building.
Earlier in the day, he had discussed the vice president during a rally with supporters at the Ellipse, putting the success or failure of his plan to dispute the election on Pence’s shoulders.
“Mike Pence is going to have to come through for us,” Trump told the crowd. “And if it doesn’t, that will be a sad day for our country.”
Pence was safely ferreted off the Senate floor by Secret Service and was hidden in a secure location for the duration of the attack, which left five people, including one police officer, dead.
“During the moment of the evacuation, he was adamant about staying in the building and not being taken away,” Pence chief of staff Marc Short told Insider on Friday. “He didn’t want to feel like we would allow that to happen in our country.”
Trump’s silent treatment of Pence is ‘unconscionable, even for the president’
The president and vice president had enjoyed a relatively good relationship up until recently – what Tim Phillips, the president of the libertarian group Americans for Prosperity, described to The Washington Post as “a durable, close relationship,” despite their clear stylistic differences and beliefs.
But as Trump slipped further and further into the baseless belief that there was widespread election fraud, the rift between Pence and Trump grew. Trump erroneously believed Pence had the ability to change the election, while Pence demurred in an 11-page letter sent to the president just before Wednesday’s rally and riot.
“It is my considered judgment that my oath to support and defend the Constitution constrains me from claiming unilateral authority to determine which electoral votes should be counted and which should not,” Pence wrote.
In the days following the siege, Trump, likely still fuming from what he perceived as Pence’s disloyalty, made no attempt to contact the vice president or check up on him, according to Reuters.
This did not sit well with aides, one of whom told the Wall Street Journal that avoiding the vice president was “unconscionable, even for the president.”
“If he had been replaced by someone as nuts as the people who have been surrounding the president as the primary advice givers for the last few months, we could have had even more of a bloodbath,” Grogan said. “Imagine what would have happened if Pence was devious and vile and didn’t stand up for the Constitution.”
On Monday, five days after the Capitol siege, Trump and Pence finally met face to face. Despite Trump not reaching out in the days following the Capitol Building riots, Pence appeared to have taken up the mantle of loyal vice president once more. The pair had what was described as a “good conversation” by observers, who said the vice president and president looked back on their accomplishments over the course of their term.
As Trump stares down a second possible impeachment trial, he may realize how important it will be to have Pence on his side.
President Donald Trump has not reached out to Vice President Mike Pence since the Jan. 6 riots at the US Capitol building, according to a NBC News report.
NBC News Senior Washington correspondent Hallie Jackson reported on Sunday that Trump did not contact Pence on Wednesday night, when the vice president presided over the Electoral College certification process.
For weeks, Trump has implored Pence to overturn the election results, with a public pressure campaign that included extraordinarily high levels of tweeting.
President Donald Trump has not reached out to Vice President Mike Pence since the Jan. 6 riots at the US Capitol building, according to a NBC News report.
NBC News Senior Washington correspondent Hallie Jackson reported on Sunday that Trump did not contact Pence on Wednesday night, when the vice president presided over the Electoral College certification process that was restarted after being disrupted by the pro-Trump rioters who breached the Capitol.
“I’m told that not only did the president not reach out to Vice President Pence on Wednesday night – he has not called him since, per a source familiar with the matter,” Jackson tweeted. “It’s an extraordinary detail.”
Jackson appeared on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” where she said that the relationship between the two men was “not good” and noted that after the Jan. 6 riots erupted, Pence was moved to a secure location with his family, who had come to the Capitol to attend the certification.
“I think it reflects … how acrimonious [their relationship] has become,” Jackson said.
For weeks, Trump has implored Pence to overturn the election results. Under the Constitution, Pence, who acts as president of the Senate in his role as vice president, is bound to announce the final Electoral College count before a joint session of Congress.
Early on Jan. 7, Congress ultimately certified President-elect Joe Biden’s 306-232 Electoral College victory.
Jackson detailed the extraordinary pressure that was applied to Pence.
“I’m told that as far back as December 15 – mid December, so weeks ago – there were behind-the-scenes maneuvering to try to essentially get the vice president to do what the president wanted,” she said.
Since the Capitol riots, a bipartisan group of lawmakers have asked for Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment and remove Trump from office, but Jackson stated that she’s been told that the vice president is skeptical of such a move.
“That’s what we’ve been hearing and reporting from people close to him allies,” she added. “But there is real concern, and anger here about how this moves forward.”