The Justice Department has contacted former Vice President Mike Pence and his legal team requesting Pence’s witness testimony as part of the ongoing criminal investigation of disgraced ex-president Donald Trump’s attempts to overturn the results of the 2020 election so he could remain in power.
According to The New York Times, “Thomas Windom, one of the lead investigators examining the efforts to overturn the election, reached out to Mr. Pence’s team in the weeks before Attorney General Merrick B. Garland appointed a special counsel on Friday.”
Garland appointed Jack Smith as special counsel to oversee the DOJ’s investigations regarding January 6, 2021 and his hoarding of classified documents at Mar-a-Lago in violation of federal law.
The Times notes:
“Mr. Pence, according to people familiar with his thinking, is open to considering the request, recognizing that the Justice Department’s criminal investigation is different from the inquiry by the House Jan. 6 committee, whose overtures he has flatly rejected.”
While the Justice Department has reached out to Pence’s attorneys, the report adds, “the discussions about questioning Mr. Pence are said to be in their early stages. Mr. Pence has not been subpoenaed, and the process could take months, because Mr. Trump can seek to block, or slow, his testimony by trying to invoke executive privilege.”
Pence could prove to be very important as the DOJ continues to weigh what actions it will take against Trump. Multiple federal grand juries are currently sitting to investigate both Jan. 6 and the classified document matter. Those could result in indictments against the former president for charges ranging from seditious conspiracy and violations of the Espionage Act.