Pence: ‘Congress has no right to my testimony’ about Jan. 6
Former Vice President Mike Pence said he was closing the door on appearing before the House Jan. 6 committee in a new interview, saying Congress “has no right” to his testimony.
In an interview with CBS “Face the Nation” moderator Margaret Brennan, parts of which were aired on Wednesday, Pence said he was “concerned” about the members all being appointed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).
“I am closing the door on that,” Pence told Brennan of testifying before the panel.
“But I must say again, the partisan nature of the January 6 committee has been a disappointment to me,” he added. “It seemed to me in the beginning, there was an opportunity to examine every aspect of what happened on January 6, and to do so more in the spirit of the 9/11 Commission, nonpartisan, nonpolitical, and that was an opportunity lost.”
Efforts to create a bipartisan commission on the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol riot failed amid GOP opposition in the Senate.
Pelosi subsequently proceeded with a select committee and rejected two Republican picks from House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (Calif.), who responded by pulling his other selections.
The panel has made Pence a central figure in its public hearings, detailing a pressure campaign from former President Trump and others urging the then-vice president to reject electors from certain states, and then the threats he faced for refusing to do so.
Pence previously said he would consider an invitation to appear, but at the time Pence cautioned he would weigh it against the “unprecedented” nature of a vice president testifying on Capitol Hill.
“I never stood in the way of senior members of my team cooperating with the committee and testifying,” Pence told Brennan. Multiple Pence aides, including his former chief of staff Marc Short and legal counsel Greg Jacob, have testified before the panel.
“But Congress has no right to my testimony,” Pence told CBS. “We have a separation of powers under the Constitution of the United States. And I believe it would establish a terrible precedent for the Congress to summon a vice president of the United States to speak about deliberations that took place at the White House.”
The Jan. 6 committee has also sought testimony from Trump, issuing a subpoena last month that the former president has sued to block.
With Republicans taking control of the House and likely to not reauthorize the committee, the panel is wrapping up its work after a series of public hearings and hundreds of private interviews in recent months.
Lawmakers are now working to prepare the panel’s report and offer legislative recommendations for how to prevent future insurrection attempts.
Copyright 2023 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.