Trump admits he wanted Pence to 'overturn' result of the 2020 election on January 6

Statement by former president contains unusually explicit explanation of what he expected from his vice-president

Eric Garcia
Monday 31 January 2022 19:43 GMT
Former Trump aide says Trump "gleefully" watched footage of the Capitol riot on 6 January

Former president Donald Trump railed against his former vice president and admitted he wanted Mike Pence to “overturn” the 2020 election outcome on 6 January last year.

Mr Trump made the remarks in a statement as a bipartisan group of senators seeks to reform the Electoral Count Act, which would explicitly make the vice president’s role ceremonial when Congress votes to certify election results. The goal is to prevent another attempt to overturn the election results as Mr Trump had hoped his vice president would.

The group of Senators includes Republican Sen Susan Collins of Maine, who voted to convict Mr Trump for inciting the riot at the Capitol.

“If the Vice President (Mike Pence) had ‘absolutely no right’ to change the Presidential Election results in the Senate, despite fraud and many other irregularities, how come the Democrats and RINO Republicans, like Wacky Susan Collins, are desperately trying to pass legislation that will not allow the Vice President to change the results of the election?” Mr Trump said in a statement released on Sunday.

“Actually, what they are saying, is that Mike Pence did have the right to change the outcome, and they now want to take that right away,” he said. “Unfortunately, he didn’t exercise that power, he could have overturned the Election!”

Mr Trump pressured Mr Pence to overturn the the election results when both houses of Congress convened to certify the election results – the day that hundreds of Trump supporters stormed the Capitol, some of them chanting “Hang Mike Pence”.

Ahead of the riot, Mr Trump spoke to rally-goers at the Stop the Steal rally that he hoped Pence would take steps to stop the certification of Joe Biden’s victory.

“And Mike Pence is going to have to come through for us, and if he doesn't, that will be a, a sad day for our country because you're sworn to uphold our Constitution,” he said.

During the riot, Mr Trump again slammed his vice president in a tweet.

“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,” he said.

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