Posts tagged with "Hang Mike Pence"

At third hearing, January 6 committee focuses on Trump’s efforts to pressure Pence

June 17, 2022

The third hearing by the House select committee investigating the January. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol focused in on a wide-ranging pressure campaign that then-President Donald Trump put on his own vice president, Mike Pence, to disrupt the transfer of power that day, reports The Wall Street Journal.

The hearing on Thursday, June 16, was led by Representative Pete Aguilar (D-California), according to committee aides; while John Wood, a senior investigator for the committee, was involved in questioning witnesses.

The committee in its second hearing on Monday reviewed evidence that Trump was told repeatedly by White House insiders, including his own attorney general, William Barr, that his claims that the 2020 election was riddled with fraud weren’t true. Trump, who refused to acknowledge the lack of evidence of election fraud, continued to assert that the election had been stolen. The committee says those claims helped inspire the mob on January 6 to storm the Capitol.

During the second public hearing, former Attorney General William Barr said the voter fraud claims were “disturbing allegations.” Witnesses testified on former President Donald Trump’s efforts to cast doubt on the election, which the committee alleges triggered the attack on the Capitol.

Trump has denied wrongdoing related to the riot and called the committee’s probe a sham.

On Thursday, the committee detailed how Trump, over the course of several weeks leading up to January 6, pushed Pence—who as vice president presided over the counting of Electoral College votes—to refuse to accept votes for Joe Biden from a handful of battleground states, throwing the election into chaos. The former president was following a playbook sketched out by lawyer John Eastman in a memo entitled “January 6 scenario.”

The scheme detailed by Eastman was based in part on the existence of fake slates of electors from seven battleground states—including Pennsylvania, Arizona and Georgia—signed by Trump backers. The hearing outlined evidence from the committee’s investigation into efforts to submit those slates, according to committee aides.

Under Eastman’s plan, Pence would refuse to count ballots in states that had multiple slates of electors. That would leave Trump with a majority of votes, and “Pence then gavels President Trump as re-elected,” according to the memo.

After expected objections from Democrats, Pence would send the matter to the House, where each state would have one vote. Since Republicans at the time controlled the delegations of 26 states, “President Trump is re-elected,”  Eastman wrote.

Another version of the plan involved sending the electoral votes back to state legislatures, which would determine which electoral slates to send to Congress. More than 100 Republican House members and several Republican senators challenged votes from states such as Pennsylvania—challenges the House and Senate ultimately rejected.

Pence consulted with several experts about Eastman’s plan, including former U.S. Court of Appeals Judge J. Michael Luttig, who hagreed to appear at the committee’s hearing Thursday.

In a letter distributed to members of Congress on January6, Pence wrote that, while some thought he could accept or reject electoral votes unilaterally, he didn’t think he had the “authority to decide which electoral votes should be counted during the Joint Session of Congress.”

In a speech to the pro-Trump crowd at the Ellipse near the White House on January. 6, Eastman said, “All we are demanding of Vice President Pence is this afternoon at 1:00 he let the legislators of the [states] look into this so we get to the bottom of it.”

“All Vice President Pence has to do is send it back to the states to recertify and we become president,” Trump said in his January 6 speech to the crowd, which followed Eastman’s.

After Trump’s speech, a large crowd started moving toward the Capitol. Trump later tweeted that Pence “didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution.” Members of the mob that broke into the Capitol began chanting “hang Mike Pence”—and Trump was said to have privately agreed that they “might be right.”

Indeed, Representative Liz Cheney (R-Wyoming), vice chairwoman of the select committee, in her opening statement at the panel’s first hearing said that Trump, aware of the chants, responded: “Maybe our supporters have the right idea.”

At the Thursday hearing, the committee planned to feature video evidence showing the danger Mr. Pence faced on January 6, committee aides said.

Research contact: @WSJ

Trump slams Ivanka and denies saying Pence ‘deserves’ to hang in ‘Truth Social’ meltdown

June 13, 2022

After a video clip displayed by the January 6 House Committee plainly showed  Ivanka Trump testifying that she didn’t believe her dad’s wild theory that the 2020 election was stolen—but instead that she accepted former Attorney General Bill Barr’s assurance that there had been no fraud connected with the 2020 election—her father, former President Donald Trump returned the favor by attacking her credibility as a witness, reports The Daily Beast.

Specifically, Ivanka told the congressional panel that she had changed her mind about whether or not the election was rigged after Barr, Trump’s AG for most of 2020, told her that it wasn’t. “I respect Attorney General Barr,” Ivanka said on the video of her testimony shown by the committee during a prime time special on Thursday night, June 9, “So I accepted what he was saying.

In immediate reaction, the following morning, Trump did not hesitate to throw his supposed favorite child under the bus: The former president rushed to tell his followers that they should pay no mind to what his daughter had said. “Ivanka Trump was not involved in looking at, or studying, Election results,” the former president wrote. “She had long since checked out and was, in my opinion, only trying to be respectful to Bill Barr and his position as Attorney General (he sucked!).”

In a flurry of missives sent via his Truth Social channel early on Friday, June 10, Trump also denied having agreed with rioters’ chants to hang Mike Pence and—just for good measure—reaffirmed his baseless claim that the election was stolen.

And it wasn’t just Ivanka’s testimony that left Trump all hot and bothered. Representative Liz Cheney (R-Wyoming) revealed that former Trump aides said the president had reacted to mob chants to hang his vice president with shocking approval, including with the ice-cold phrase: “Mike Pence deserves it.” Again, Trump contradicted the testimony with all-caps fury. “I NEVER said, or even thought of saying, ‘Hang Mike Pence,’” he wrote. “This is either a made up story by somebody looking to become a star, or FAKE NEWS!”

“The so-called ‘Rush on the Capitol’ was not caused by me,” Trump continued, “It was caused by a Rigged and Stolen Election!” Returning to another familiar refrain, the former commander-in-chief also appeared to sum up his feelings toward the bipartisan House select committee generally as: “A one sided, totally partisan, POLITICAL WITH HUNT!”

He earlier used the platform to claim that the panel “refuses to play any of the many positive witnesses and statements, refuses to talk of the Election Fraud and Irregularities that took place on a massive scale,” before adding: “Our Country is in such trouble!”

At the hearing Thursday, committee Chair Bennie Thompson (D-Mississippi) directly blamed Trump for the attack on the Capitol after the 2020 election. “He spurred a mob of domestic enemies of the constitution to march down the capital and subvert American democracy,” Thompson said.

Representative Cheney further pointed to Trump’s repeated claims that the election was stolen as the reason the attack took place. “Those who invaded our Capitol and battled law enforcement for hours were motivated by what President Trump had told them: that the election was stolen, and that he was the rightful president,” Cheney said in her opening statement. “President Trump summoned the mob, assembled the mob, and lit the flame of this attack.”

Research contact: @thedailybeast