Woodward book: Quayle advised Pence he had ‘no flexibility’ in overturning election
Former Vice President Dan Quayle reportedly told former Vice President Mike Pence that he had “no flexibility” in overturning the results of the 2020 presidential election, according to a new book from veteran journalist Bob Woodward and Washington Post reporter Robert Costa.
Pence reportedly sought advice from Quayle — who served in the George H.W. Bush administration — when grappling with pressure from former President Trump to reject the 2020 election results.
CNN obtained a copy of the new book, “Peril,” set to be released on Sept. 21, which details the exchange between the two vice presidents.
Pence reportedly asked Quayle a number of times if there was anything he could do, but the former vice president told him to “forget it.”
“Mike, you have no flexibility on this. None. Zero. Forget it. Put it away,” Quayle told Pence, according to the authors.
“You don’t know the position I’m in,” Pence reportedly said, again asking Quayle if he had any options.
“I do know the position you’re in,” responded Quayle, who was vice president to the last incumbent president to lose an election. “I also know what the law is. You listen to the parliamentarian. That’s all you do. You have no power.”
Pence ultimately bucked the president’s requests and certified the vote, which was delayed hours after a pro-Trump mob descended on the Capitol in an effort to thwart the constitutionally-mandated process.
Pence’s conversation with Quayle is one of a number of revelations in Woodward and Costa’s new book.
The authors write that Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley took action to limit Trump’s ability to order a military strike or launch nuclear weapons days after the Jan. 6 riot.
Woodward and Costa said Milley was concerned that Trump might “go rogue,” according to CNN.
The chairman reportedly convened a secret meeting at the Pentagon on Jan. 8 to review the process of military actions. During that gathering, the authors said Milley ordered senior military officials not to abide by orders from anyone, including Trump, unless he was involved.
“No matter what you are told, you do the procedure. You do the process. And I’m part of that procedure,” Milley said, according to the book.
Woodward and Costa said Milley “felt no absolute certainty that the military could control or trust Trump and believed it was his job as the senior military officer to think the unthinkable and take any and all necessary precautions.”