In April, former Vice President Mike Pence testified to a federal grand jury investigating the aftermath of the 2020 election, and more specifically the actions of then-President Donald Trump. It marked the first time in modern history that a vice president had been compelled to testify about the president he served beside.
It is now increasingly likely that Mike Pence will testify against Trump in the Department of Justice’s (DoJ) election interference case.
Trump was charged by the DoJ in August on four counts in special counsel Jack Smith’s investigation into the former president’s efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election and for his role in inciting the January 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capitol. Trump has repeatedly claimed without evidence, that the election was stolen via widespread voter fraud, while he has maintained his innocence in the case.
Mike Pence Out of the Race
On Saturday, the former vice president announced that he was suspending his campaign for the 2024 GOP nomination. He had failed to gain support with voters and it was increasingly becoming apparent he would struggle to qualify for the third Republican debate, scheduled to take place in Miami, Florida, on November 8.
“It’s become clear to me it’s not my time,” Pence said during his speech Saturday at the Republican Jewish Coalition Conference. “I have decided to suspend my campaign for president effective today. We always knew this would be an uphill battle, but I have no regrets.”
Pence had failed to connect with independents and moderate Republicans likely due to his association with the Trump administration, while at the same time, he has seen little support from MAGA Republicans for his refusal to support Trump’s attempts to overturn the election.
Pence Could Hurt Trump’s Chances – Maybe
While Pence has realized he can’t reach the Oval Office, he can also work to ensure that Trump won’t either.
MSNBC legal analyst Danny Cevallos on Sunday suggested that it is “almost a certainty” that Pence will take the stand against Trump.
“I think that when he was opposing subpoenas in the past, he was doing so symbolically. He was really just putting on a front,” Cevallos explained. “If he was speaking candidly behind closed doors, he was probably saying, ‘All right, we’ve got to argue against the subpoena, just for the show, just for my candidacy. But secretly, I can’t wait to go in there and testify against the guy who put this tremendous fear into me and many other people in Congress on that fateful day well over a year ago now.’
“I don’t think there’s going to be much impediment to Mike Pence racing in to testify,” Cevallos continued. “There is absolutely nothing holding him back now.”
The MSNBC analyst is not alone in his opinion that the former VEEP will give testimony against his former boss.
“Pence has already flipped on Trump and he’s going to be the star witness in the election fraud cases. Pence was the target of the fake elector scheme, he’s already testified before the grand jury, and has said publicly that he told Trump that what he and his lawyers wanted to do was unconstitutional,” former federal prosecutor Neama Rahmani told Newsweek, adding, “Pence withdrawing from the presidential race doesn’t change his role as a witness in the cases. It probably makes it easier for him to testify without worrying about alienating potential voters.”
It is improbable that Pence would throw his support behind Trump, but the former president has already suggested his former VEEP should offer an endorsement.
“Everybody that leaves seems to be endorsing me. You know people are leaving now, and they’re all endorsing me. I don’t know about Mike Pence; he should endorse me,” Trump told a Las Vegas, Nevada, rally late Saturday night.
“He should endorse me, you know why? Because I had a great successful presidency, and he was the vice president. He should endorse me. I chose him, made him vice president, but people in politics can be very disloyal.”
Pence has not offered an endorsement, and instead took a sweep at Trump while announcing he was withdrawing from the race, “I urge all my fellow Republicans here, give our country a Republican standard-bearer that will, as Lincoln said, appeal to the better angels of our nature.”
That could just be a precursor of what Pence says on the witness stand.
Author Experience and Expertise
A Senior Editor for 19FortyFive, Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer. He has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites with over 3,200 published pieces over a twenty-year career in journalism. He regularly writes about military hardware, firearms history, cybersecurity, politics, and international affairs. Peter is also a Contributing Writer for Forbes and Clearance Jobs. You can follow him on Twitter: @PeterSuciu.
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