Pence took inspiration from Madison, Bible on Jan. 6
Former Vice President Mike Pence said he took inspiration from former President James Madison when he certified the results of the Electoral College vote despite intense pressure from former President Trump and his allies to not do so.
Pence, who has come under enormous criticism from Trump for not challenging the Electoral College results, said Madison and the Bible guided his decisionmaking, according to a report from CNN.
Speaking at an event at the University of Iowa on Monday evening, Pence, asked who had told him to buck Trump’s plan, answered, “James Madison.”
Pence also mentioned the Bible: “Psalm 15 says he who keeps his oath even when it hurts.”
The former vice president was presiding over the Electoral College count in Congress, traditionally a ceremonial role, when Republican members of the House and Senate challenged the votes in certain states, leading to debates and votes in both chambers.
It also led to the invasion of the Capitol by a pro-Trump mob, which forced the lawmakers to evacuate. Many in the crowd chanted for Pence’s death during the melee.
Pence has sought to keep in good standing in Trump’s orbit despite the differences and noted that he wrote a letter to Congress expressing worry over voting integrity in some states, reports CNN.
“I continue to share those concerns and I support efforts in states to improve voter integrity as has been done in places like Georgia and Arizona and elsewhere,” Pence said, according to CNN. Georgia and Arizona were two of the states narrowly won last year by President Biden over Trump, who has falsely claimed the election was “stolen” from him.
Pence defended his actions, saying in Iowa that the “only role of the federal government is to open and count the electoral votes that were sent by the states. You’ve got to be willing to do your duty.”
Pence has said in June that he and Trump have spoken “many times” since they left office but noted that “I don’t know if we’ll ever see eye-to-eye” when discussing the events of Jan. 6.
A former lawyer for Trump, John Eastman, sent an email to an aide in which he said that Pence was to blame for the Jan. 6 insurrection due to the fact that Pence refused to block Biden’s certification. The Washington Post first obtained the email.