Pence says DOJ charges against Trump for Jan. 6 would be ‘terribly divisive’

Former Vice President Mike Pence on Monday urged the Justice Department against indicting former President Trump ahead of a House panel’s expected announcement to refer Trump on criminal charges related to the Jan. 6, 2021, riots at the Capitol.

“I hope the Justice Department understands the magnitude, the very idea of indicting a former president of the United States,” Pence said on Fox News. “I think that would be terribly divisive in the country at a time when the American people want to see us heal. At this time of year, we’re all thinking about the most important things in our lives, our faith, our family, and my hope is the Justice Department will think very carefully with how they proceed in that regard.”

Pence’s comments came shortly before the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol was set to convene for its final public meeting.

The committee is expected to release its final report and vote on criminal referrals, with the expectation that the lawmakers on the panel will vote to refer Trump to the Justice Department over his actions surrounding the riots.

NBC News reported that the committee is expected to vote to urge the Justice Department to pursue charges against Trump for obstructing an official proceeding, conspiracy to defraud the government and inciting or assisting an insurrection.

Trump spent the weeks after the 2020 election claiming there was widespread fraud and that the election was stolen from him, even as his legal challenges fell flat in court. He then spent weeks pressuring Pence to overturn the election result or refuse to certify the results during the proceedings on Jan. 6.

Pence has repeatedly referred to the riots as a dark day in history, and he has rebuffed Trump’s claims that the vice president has the authority to reject electoral results. But he has also been critical at times of what he views as the partisan nature of the House panel and its focus on Trump.

Tags Mike Pence

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