Schiff Issues Warning To Mike Pence Over Jan. 6 Testimony

0
650

The House committee investigating the Capitol riot will be seeking the voluntary cooperation of former Vice President Mike Pence, as confirmed by committee member Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) during a recent appearance on CNN. Pence was the subject of a substantial pressure campaign in the lead-up to January 6, with then-President Trump and others seeking to get the then-vice president to block the certification of Biden’s presidential election victory — but, in his role overseeing the Congressional certification process, Pence did not actually have the legally established power to do so. In speaking with the riot investigation committee, Pence could provide insights about abuses of power within the Trump administration.

Asked on CNN whether the riot panel would be pursuing voluntarily provided testimony from Pence, Schiff commented as follows:

‘Yes, I think our chairman has now acknowledged that we will be. And that’s our practice, which is to invite people to come in voluntarily, hope that they’ll do so. And [Pence] would have, I think, very undoubtedly relevant testimony for us about that pressure campaign. No one would be in a better position really to speak to it than he would. All of the efforts to get him to violate his constitutional duty to count [electoral] votes and instead reject votes without basis. And so we hope that he’ll be willing to do so. And as the chairman has indicated, we intend to extend that invitation fairly soon.’

Schiff did not definitively answer whether the panel would subpoena Pence in the event that he refused to appear for testimony. Instead, Schiff just commented as follows when asked about possibly subpoenaing the former vice president:

‘We don’t like to speculate about that until we have a chance to see whether people will come in on their own volition. And he did the right thing on that day. I certainly have a lot of differences with Mike Pence, and I think for four years, he was tragically a dutiful yes-man for the president. But on one day that really, really mattered, he said “no.” So I think he’s got a good, important story to tell. I think it’s a story the American people should hear, and it would be invaluable to our work. So let’s hope that he’s willing to do the right thing.’

Check out Schiff’s remarks below:

Pence ultimately — as Schiff references — declined to go along with the schemes that were laid out for him involving the attempted takeover of the election process at the certification stage. For that, he received harsh pushback from Trump, who issued a public statement via Twitter that sharply criticized the then-VP as rioters swarmed the Capitol, putting Pence’s life in danger. Despite the real dangers to Pence — members of the mob chanted that he should be hung, the ex-vice president has remained committed to the GOP with Trump at the helm, and he has complained about outrage over January 6. On Fox, Pence claimed that “the media wants to distract from the Biden administration’s failed agenda by focusing on one day in January. They want to use that one day to try and demean the character and intentions of 74 million Americans who believe we could be strong again and prosperous again and supported our administration in 2016 and 2020.”