Pence pushes back on Trump’s call to terminate the Constitution
Former Vice President Mike Pence on Monday pushed back on former President Trump’s assertion that the Constitution should be disregarded to allow for him to return to the White House in the wake of new revelations about Twitter’s handling of a controversial story about Hunter Biden.
“I must tell you that I think that everyone that serves in public office, everyone that aspires to serve or serve again should make it clear that we will support and defend the Constitution of the United States,” Pence said on WVOC radio in Columbia, S.C., ahead of a visit to the state on Tuesday.
The former vice president, who has said he is contemplating a 2024 presidential bid, noted that every federal official takes an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution.
Pence added that he believes he upheld his oath to defend the Constitution throughout his four years as Trump’s vice president, particularly in the final weeks of his term as Trump pressured him to reject the 2020 election results.
Trump on Saturday reacted to the release of internal Twitter communications that showed company officials deciding to limit the spread of posts about the contents of a laptop belonging to President Biden’s son in the closing weeks of the 2020 campaign.
“A Massive Fraud of this type and magnitude allows for the termination of all rules, regulations, and articles, even those found in the Constitution,” Trump posted on Truth Social, suggesting there should either be a new election or that he should be declared the winner retroactively.
Trump has for years claimed the 2020 election was stolen and fraudulent and that Hunter Biden colluded with his father over his business dealings, though there is no proof of either. But his calls for the Constitution to be ignored marked a new level of incendiary rhetoric.
While Pence on Monday said that the handling of the Hunter Biden story was a “disgrace,” he joined a small list of Republicans to criticize Trump over his calls to disregard the Constitution entirely so he could return to power.
Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), who defeated a Trump-backed challenger in November, said suggesting the termination of the Constitution “is not only a betrayal of our Oath of Office, it’s an affront to our Republic.”
“Well, obviously I don’t support that,” Rep.-elect Mike Lawler (R-N.Y.) said on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday.
Many Republican leaders have yet to weigh in, and some, such as Rep. David Joyce (R-Ohio), shrugged it off.
“He says a lot of things, but that doesn’t mean that it’s ever going to happen,” Joyce said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week.”