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Capitol Insurrection Donald Trump Mike Pence

Former Pence Staffers Are Being ‘Particularly Cooperative’ With House Jan. 6 Committee

In what can only be seen as the ultimate irony, it now appears that the evidence most likely to result in criminal charges being filed against failed, twice-impeached former President Donald Trump may be provided by staffers who once worked for former Vice President Mike Pence.

According to Axios, members of Pence’s staff have been “particularly cooperative” with the House Select Committee investigating the January 6 Capitol insurrection:

People in and around former Vice President Mike Pence’s office have been particularly cooperative as the Jan. 6 select committee focuses on what former President Trump was doing during the more than three hours the Capitol was under attack, sources familiar with the testimony tell Axios.

The cooperation of those who had a front-row seat to what transpired on that horrible January day is key to the committee, which is on the verge of holding public hearings that could further expose Trump and members of his inner circle to criminal referrals the Justice Department would be hard-pressed to ignore.

Some of the former Pence staff members have even agreed to talk to the Jan. 6 panel without having to be subpoenaed:

  • Both Pence’s former chief of staff Marc Short, and former press secretary Alyssa Farah, who later served as White House communications director, are among those cooperating with the committee.
  • Keith Kellogg also has given a deposition.
  • One source familiar with their involvement said Short, who was subpoenaed by the committee, would not have cooperated without the approval of Pence.

The committee has received the most helpful information from “second- and third-tier administration staff who were not directly involved but were at the White House on Jan. 6 and had access to top administration officials.”

After speaking with the committee, Farah noted:

“You could see how much information they already had.

“Those who are refusing to cooperate likely are doing so out of complete fealty to Donald Trump and not wanting to piss him off.

“But, secondarily, because they’re realizing the committee has quite a bit more information than they realized. And their involvement is known to a much greater degree than they realized.”

The upcoming public hearings could prove to be a tipping point that will convince the majority of Americans Trump and members of his staff need to be held accountable and prosecuted for their crimes. And they should also make for the most fascinating television since the Watergate hearings back in 1974.

 


Categories
Capitol Insurrection Donald Trump Mike Pence The Trump Organization WTF?!

Trump Claims Threats To ‘Hang Mike Pence’ Were OK Because ‘People Were Very Angry’

Chants and threats to “hang Mike Pence” by insurrectionists who stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6 were no big deal, according to failed former President Donald Trump because “people were very angry.”

In an interview with Jonathan Karl of ABC News, the one-term, twice-impeached Trump said he was certain Pence was safe as thousands of pro-Trump supporters rioted and forced their way into Congress on the day that the 2020 presidential election was being certified.

Karl asked Trump:

Were you worried about (Pence) during that siege? Were you worried about his safety?”

Trump responded:

“No, I thought he was well-protected, and I had heard that he was in good shape. No. Because I had heard he was in very good shape. But, but, no, I think —”

That led Karl to interject:

“Because you heard those chants — that was terrible. I mean — “

Trump:

“He could have — well, the people were very angry.”

And then Trump began to further rationalize how close Pence came to being killed:

“Because it’s common sense, Jon. It’s common sense that you’re supposed to protect. How can you — if you know a vote is fraudulent, right? — how can you pass on a fraudulent vote to Congress? How can you do that? And I’m telling you: 50/50, it’s right down the middle for the top constitutional scholars when I speak to them. Anybody I spoke to — almost all of them at least pretty much agree, and some very much agree with me — because he’s passing on a vote that he knows is fraudulent. How can you pass a vote that you know is fraudulent? Now, when I spoke to him, I really talked about all of the fraudulent things that happened during the election. I didn’t talk about the main point, which is the legislatures did not approve — five states. The legislatures did not approve all of those changes that made the difference between a very easy win for me in the states, or a loss that was very close, because the losses were all very close.”

In other words, because Trump lost to President Joe Biden, Pence was expendable, little more than a pawn in the larger plan for a coup that the ex-president and his allies put in place shortly after it became clear that Biden had won by a landslide.

If the House Select Committee was looking for a smoking gun which proves Donald Trump’s culpability for what took place on Jan. 6, they don’t have to look any further than his remarks to Jon Karl.

 

Categories
Capitol Insurrection Donald Trump Elections Mike Pence The Trump Adminstration

Members Of Mike Pence’s ‘Inner Circle’ Appear Ready To Tell What They Know To The 1/6 Committee

In a move that could well spell big trouble for failed, one-term former President Donald Trump and those who conspired with him to arrange the rioting which took place at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, it appears that five members of former Vice President Mike Pence’s inner circle are ready to tell what they know to the House Select Committee investigating what transpired on that fateful day earlier this year.

According to CNN, the committee does indeed want to speak with top officials who served as senior advisers to Pence:

Among them is Pence’s former national security adviser, Keith Kellogg, who was subpoenaed by the committee on Tuesday and was with former President Donald Trump most of the day on January 6.

While Kellogg was subpoenaed, most of the other staffers are reportedly eager to provide testimony:

Multiple sources tell CNN that some individuals close to Pence may be willing, either voluntarily or under the guise of a “friendly subpoena,” to provide critical information on how Trump and his allies tried to pressure the former vice president to overturn the results of the 2020 election.

The other former Pence officials who are reportedly willing to talk to the committee include the ex-VP’s chief of staff:

Sources tell CNN the list consists of several people who are close to Pence, including former chief counsel Greg Jacob and former chief of staff Marc Short. Also of potential interest to the committee, according to a source with knowledge, are Pence’s previous chief of staff Nick Ayers, former legislative affairs director Chris Hodgson, political adviser Marty Obst, and former special assistant Zach Bauer.

In addition, former Pence press secretary and Trump communications aide Alyssa Farah, who left the administration in early December 2020, has voluntarily met with Republicans on the House select committee and provided information.

All five of the former Pence staffers are believed to have important details about what took place on the day of the Capitol insurrection, including information regarding what they may have heard or see Trump doing as pro-Trump supporters stormed the Capitol and threatened to kill members of Congress and Pence:

The committee also stated that Kellogg was at the White House on January 6 as the attack unfolded and has “direct information” regarding Trump’s “statements about and reactions to the Capitol insurrection.”

While Kellogg served as Pence’s national security adviser, he is considered a key witness because of his proximity to Trump on January 6. The former president’s then national security adviser, Robert O’Brien, was out of town that day.

Jacob, as chief counsel to Pence, is also a key figure because he “played a critical role in countering efforts to persuade the former vice president not to certify the electoral results.”

That effort, according to committee member Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD), is important if the American people are ever to know exactly how close this country came to seeing a coup carried out by a sitting president:

“There was very clearly a plan on the political coup side to mobilize a campaign to get Mike Pence to block certification of the electoral college votes.”

Pence may also wind up being called to testify before the House Select Committee, which would set up an interesting quandary for a man who has tried to distance himself from his former boss but also needs Trump’s base of support if he hopes to run for the White House himself in 2024.

Categories
GOP Mike Pence The Trump Adminstration

The Disturbing Role Mike Pence Played In The Jan. 6 Insurrection Is Finally Coming To Light

The House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol is taking a closer look at the role former Vice President Mike Pence may have played in the events of that day, and some on the committee believe Pence was a big part of what took place.

Greg Sargent of the Washington Post notes that the Select Committee doesn’t see Pence as a “hero” for his actions on Jan. 6, as has been suggested by some:

The true contours of this emerge from a New York Times excavation of the role of John Eastman, the lawyer who wrote the Trump coup memo. It outlined how Pence supposedly could exercise unilateral power (that he did not have) over the process to refuse to count President-elect Joe Biden’s electors, throwing the election to Trump.

Buried in that piece is an important revelation: Pence apparently went further than previously known in probing whether he could execute a version of Eastman’s scheme.

Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) is especially interested in finding out what Pence knew and when he knew it, remarking:

“It’s an important part of the historical record to determine how close Trump actually came to achieving his scheme of getting Pence to declare unilateral power to reject electoral college votes.”

Pence, it now appears, wanted to be convinced that he could indeed delay counting and certification of the electoral votes. He didn’t reject the idea outright, as some have suggested. And in doing so, that makes him a co-conspirator in Trump’s scheme to remain in power despite the results of the 2020 election, when voters overwhelmingly rejected him and his administration:

Pence ultimately declared that he did not have this unilateral power. But the point is that, if Eastman is correct, Pence and Jacob sought to be convinced otherwise. It’s possible Pence simply went through these motions to placate Trump. But the Jan. 6 committee will have to find out the full truth.

And the very suggestion that Pence was indeed willing to play a role in subverting the Constitution may also lead to long-overdue election reform, most notably the the entire idea of an Electoral College deciding who wins presidential elections instead of letting popular vote decide the winner the way it does in every other election, Sargent concludes:

That would require reform of the Electoral Count Act. And so, it’s likely the committee will recommend that and other reforms to cut off the path to such schemes in the future. But whatever reforms it does recommend, nailing down how close we came to the worst can only build public support for them.

 

Categories
Crime Donald Trump The Trump Adminstration

Pentagon Report Lays Out Why Trump Should Be Charged With Treason For The Jan. 6 Attack

In the midst of the horrific mayhem that was taking place at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, Vice President Mike Pence telephoned the acting defense secretary and told him:

“Clear the Capitol.”

According to a leaked Pentagon document, the timeline of what transpired next makes it clear that Pence’s order was overruled, and could only have been countermanded by one man: President Donald Trump.

The Associated Press (AP) obtained the Pentagon document which lays out a very clear and damning timeline:

“But order would not be restored for hours.

“These new details about the deadly riot are contained in a previously undisclosed document prepared by the Pentagon for internal use that was obtained by The Associated Press and vetted by current and former government officials.

“The timeline adds another layer of understanding about the state of fear and panic while the insurrection played out, and lays bare the inaction by then-President Donald Trump and how that void contributed to a slowed response by the military and law enforcement. It shows that the intelligence missteps, tactical errors and bureaucratic delays were eclipsed by the government’s failure to comprehend the scale and intensity of a violent uprising by its own citizens.”

The inaction of Donald Trump. Just as he failed to control the COVID-19 pandemic, Trump also failed to protect everyone in the Capitol on that fateful day. That alone is a form of treason, because it violates the very oath of office a president takes when inaugurated while one of his hands is raised and other rests on a Bible.

As Trump dithered and encouraged the insurrectionists with his silence, Pentagon officials — along with White House aides, Congressional leaders, and Mike Pence — tried to manage the crisis from a secure underground facility. Trump never once called them or checked to see how they were doing. He abdicated his role as leader of the county and allowed a deadly riot to continue.

Some have suggested that Trump should be charged with sedition for stirring up the crowd that attacked the Capitol, but treason is a more fitting charge.

 

Here’s the difference between sedition and treason:

“While seditious conspiracy is generally defined as conduct or language inciting rebellion against the authority of a state, treason is the more serious offense of actively levying war against the United States or giving aid to its enemies.”

Donald Trump gave aid to domestic terrorists who were attacking Congress. If that’s not treason, then what in the hell is?