Pence says he doesn't 'recall' being put on standby during Trump Walter Reed visit

Vice President Pence said Tuesday that he doesn’t “recall” being told to be on “standby” when President TrumpDonald John TrumpBubba Wallace to be driver of Michael Jordan, Denny Hamlin NASCAR team Graham: GOP will confirm Trump's Supreme Court nominee before the election Southwest Airlines, unions call for six-month extension of government aid MORE made an unannounced visit to Walter Reed Medical Center last year.

“I don’t recall being told to be on standby,” Pence told Fox News’s Bret Baier when pressed on an account included in a new book from New York Times correspondent Michael Schmidt. “I was informed that the president had a doctor’s appointment.”

“I’ve got to tell you, part of this job is you’re always on standby. You’re vice president of the United States,” Pence continued. “The American people can be confident that this president is in remarkably good health, and every single day I see that energy in high relief.”


According to Schmidt’s book, Pence was told to be on standby to assume the powers of the president last November in the event Trump had to be anesthetized during the visit to Walter Reed, which had not been on Trump’s schedule and prompted widespread speculation about the president's health.

Pence said Tuesday that he is “always informed” of Trump’s movements and insisted there was “nothing out of the ordinary about that moment or that day.” He referred other questions to the White House physician.

Trump sought to refute the report earlier Tuesday, denying in a tweet that he made an emergency visit to Walter Reed after suffering “a series of mini-strokes.”

“Never happened to THIS candidate - FAKE NEWS. Perhaps they are referring to another candidate from another Party!” Trump tweeted.

Schmidt did not, in fact, report that Trump visited the medical center after suffering a series of strokes.


The White House physician also issued a statement saying Trump has not experienced or been evaluated for "a cerebrovascular accident (stroke), transient ischemic attack (mini stroke), or any acute cardiovascular emergencies" and remains in good health.

The Trump campaign later called on CNN to fire political analyst Joe Lockhart after he asked on Twitter following the report from Schmidt’s book whether Trump had a stroke “which he is hiding from the American public.”

“CNN should fire Joe Lockhart, a lifetime failure who thought it was a great idea for fellow loser Michael Dukakis to put on that stupid helmet, for knowingly pushing a conspiracy theory about President Trump’s health,” the Trump campaign said in a statement.

“If another CNN employee said similar things about Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaTwitter investigating automated image previews over apparent algorithmic bias Donald Trump delivers promise for less interventions in foreign policy Rush Limbaugh encourages Senate to skip hearings for Trump's SCOTUS nominee MORE they’d be fired immediately, so the same standard should be applied here. That is, of course, unless CNN is complicit in the smear campaign in order to level the playing field against Joe BidenJoe BidenJoe Biden looks to expand election battleground into Trump country Trump puts Supreme Court fight at center of Ohio rally Special counsel investigating DeVos for potential Hatch Act violation: report MORE, somebody who truly has lost a step,” the campaign continued.