Pence told Trump he doesn't have power to block certification of Biden win: report

Vice President Pence has reportedly informed President TrumpDonald TrumpSchumer: Impeachment trial will be quick, doesn't need a lot of witnesses Nurse to be tapped by Biden as acting surgeon general: report Schumer calls for Biden to declare climate emergency MORE that he does not have the authority to challenge the results of the 2020 election, despite the president's efforts to protest President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenBudowsky: A Biden-McConnell state of emergency summit DC might win US House vote if it tries Inaugural poet Amanda Gorman inks deal with IMG Models MORE's win.

Pence told the president Tuesday during their weekly lunch that he does not have the power to block a congressional certification of the Electoral College results, The New York Times reported.

The meeting reportedly came hours after Trump falsely claimed on Twitter that the vice president “has the power to reject fraudulently chosen electors.” Trump said at a rally in Georgia the previous night that he hoped Pence would “come through for us” during the Wednesday certification of Biden’s Electoral College win.


The Hill has reached out to Pence’s office for comment.

Trump tore into the report in a statement on Tuesday night, saying it was "fake news" and maintaining that Pence never made the remarks.

"The Vice President and I are in total agreement that the Vice President has the power to act," Trump said.

“The November 3rd election was corrupt in contested states, and in particular it was not in accordance with the Constitution in that they made large scale changes to election rules and regulations as dictated by local judges and politicians, not by state legislators. This means that it was illegal."

Trump said that Pence "has several options," including decertifying results or sending them back to the states. 

Despite Trump's statement, Pence's role during the Jan. 6 joint session of Congress will be largely ceremonial under the Constitution.


However, during the certification, at least 13 GOP senators and more than 100 House Republicans are expected to object, triggering hours of debate and a formal vote.

Enough members of both the Democratic House and the GOP-held Senate have said they will oppose the objection, dooming any attempt to prevent Biden from taking office. Sen. John CornynJohn CornynMcConnell: Power-sharing deal can proceed after Manchin, Sinema back filibuster Manchin vows that he won't vote to kill filibuster 'under any condition' Leahy, not Roberts, to preside over impeachment trial MORE (Texas), one of several GOP senators who have said they will not object, tweeted The New York Times report Tuesday evening.

The objections are expected to cover Arizona, Georgia and Pennsylvania, all battlegrounds where Biden defeated Trump.

Pence has yet to comment on the public remarks by Trump, which follow weeks of similar calls by the president's supporters. However, Marc Short, the vice president's chief of staff, publicly pushed back on White House trade adviser Peter Navarro’s claim that Pence has the power to reject the results.

"Peter Navarro is many things," Short told The Wall Street Journal. “He is not a constitutional scholar.”

Updated: 10:16 p.m.