Mike Pence, the former Vice President, remembered his intense anger on January 6, 2021, when his running mate then-President Trump scolded him for what he claimed was lacking courage, calling the demands from Trump that he outright refuse to officially certify the 2020 election results as “reckless” in a highly candid interview made public this past Sunday.
In an interview slated to air Monday, ABC News World News Tonight anchor David Muir spoke with Pence just the night before the publication of his brand new book, “So Help Me God.” In the interview, excerpts of which were released early, Pence recounted his feelings on January 6, 2021 when he read a tweet from Trump saying Pence “didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution.”
“It angered me,” stated Pence. “But I turned to my daughter, who was standing nearby, and I said, ‘It doesn’t take courage to break the law. It takes courage to uphold the law.’”
“I mean, the president’s words were reckless,” Pence went on. “It was clear he decided to be part of the problem.”
Segments of the book from Pence that were published in The Wall Street Journal included a detailed description of Pence’s memories of January 6. Pence spoke about how he had lunch with Trump just two weeks after the 2020 elections and expressed to the former president that if the legal challenges to the results of the election failed, he could start a 2024 comeback campaign by assisting Republicans in taking victories in the Senate runoffs for Georgia, the 2021 Virginia governor’s race, and the House and Senate in 2022.
“He seemed unmoved, even weary,” explained Pence, remembering that Trump stated to him, “I don’t know, 2024 is so far off.”
Pence remembered an “irresponsible” ad put out by the Lincoln Project, a highly controversial group that purports to be anti-Trump Republicans but now stands against all GOP candidates, That suggested, when he stood over the joint session of Congress to count the electoral votes, he would only be “putting the final nail in the coffin” of Trump’s re-election.
“It was designed to annoy the president. It worked,” claimed Pence, going further to state that while attending a December cabinet meeting, “President Trump told me the ad ‘looked bad for you.’”
Pence answered that he had fully stood in support of the legal challenges to the election and would maintain that.
Pence expressed that he welcomed Missouri GOP Sen. Josh Hawley’s recent statement announcing that he would co-sponsor election objections because he thought the needed to be debated in Congress.
“On Saturday, Jan. 2, I instructed my chief of staff to issue a statement supporting the right of lawmakers to bring objections under the Electoral Count Act,” highlighted Pence, which he claimed pushed Trump to tell him, “You have gone from very unpopular to popular!” but seemed to urge him to reject the electoral votes, stating, “You can be a historic figure, but if you wimp out, you’re just another somebody.”
Pence stated that Trump spoke to him on January 6 in the late morning, and Pence expressed to Trump that he did not think at all that he had the power to choose which electoral votes would actually count, adding that he would put forth an official statement to that effect to Congress directly.